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ISSN 2587-814X (print),
ISSN 2587-8158 (online)

Russian version: ISSN 1998-0663 (print),
ISSN 2587-8166 (online)

Andrey Mikheev  1, Valeriy Pyatetskiy 1
  • 1 National University of Science and Technology MISiS , 4, Leninsky Prospect, Moscow, 119991, Russian Federation

Designing executable business processes as a programming paradigm 

2016. No. 1(35). P. 45–56 [issue contents]

Andrey G. Mikheev - Associate Professor, Department of Business Informatics and Industrial Management Systems, National University of Science and Technology MISiS
Address: 4, Leninsky Prospect, Moscow, 119991, Russian Federation 
E-mail: andrmikheev@gmail.com

Valeriy E. Pyatetskiy - Professor, Head of Department of Business Informatics and Industrial Management Systems, National University of Science and Technology MISiS
Address: 4, Leninsky Prospect, Moscow, 119991, Russian Federation 
E-mail: 7621496@gmail.com

      This article discusses techniques used to design business processes that are directly executable on the computer system of an enterprise (executable business processes). It also describes the experience of teaching the elements of this technology. This experience was accumulated within two years of teaching process disciplines to bachelors and masters in National University of Science and Technology MISiS and Moscow State University of Economics, Statistics and Informatics (MESI).
      One of the reasons to choose the process way of enterprise automation is reducing the cost of automation. In traditional automation, at first the business analyst describes the functionality of the designed system in the form of text, then the programmer translates it into code.  The use of executable business processes would make it possible to avoid duplication of work in many ways. In this case the business analyst with the customer uses visual graphic software to develop the business processes of automated functionality which will then be executed directly in the computer environment. Schemes of executable business processes are the human-readable graphical description of the corresponding functionality and it’s not necessary to translate them into code. Therefore, the cost of analytical work in this case is the same while the cost of programming is significantly lower. If the business environment changes, the business analyst can quickly change the schemes of business processes accordingly without involving the programmer. In addition, in many cases, the business analyst can independently (without programmer) develop new business processes. Therefore, the cost of development, maintenance and support of such IT-solutions is significantly lower than the cost of traditional solutions, while the speed of development, implementation and subsequent changes is significantly higher.
      These advantages (faster, cheaper, easier to maintain and support) are the same advantages the paradigm of object-oriented programming has over the procedural programming paradigm. By analogy, we can call the development of software solutions based on executable business processes a new programming paradigm with respect to the traditional approach.
      Process automation based on executable business processes requires process thinking from business analysts that differs from the thinking of IT specialists in the traditional enterprise automation. In addition to knowledge of business process notations, business analysts should be able to implement the typical situations in enterprise business in the form of executable business processes. This article presents the methodology that was used to teach students the process thinking.

Citation:

Mikheev A.G., Pyatetskiy V.E. (2016) Designing executable business processes as a programming paradigm. Business Informatics, no. 1 (35), pp. 45–56. DOI: 10.17323/1998-0663.2016.1.45.56. 

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