Business Process Management, PLM and Open Source Track

Business Process Management, PLM and Open Source Track

BPM (Business Process Management) is another interesting topic I’m following already many years. I found it connected to PLM and other product development disciplines. PLM usually contains some elements of Business Process Management. I’ve been discussing the topic on my blog early. Look on few previous posts such as PLM Software and Business Process Scalability and How to increase business process technology adoption rate for PLM? BPM wasn’t on the list of hot announcements that PLM vendors are doing these days. It was kind of “considered done” action. Was it that, in reality? I don’t know. Process management is an inside topic in PLM implementation. IT and engineering system management people are interested in how to make it right. The same people can also decide what tools and infrastructure will be used for process management. Does it come from PLM vendor? Maybe IT will decide to use some alternatives in addition to that? Who knows? The decision will be hidden deep in IT department…

Nevertheless, I found the following article in CNET interesting – Open Source BPM startup BonitaSoft raised $11M. For me the importance of the event was mostly because of it is another example in a wider trend – finding simpler and more affordable solutions for complicated problems. BPM is one of them. There is plenty of tools that can be used to get BPM done in a complex way. This is where IT is going. This is where complex PLM implementations are going. I found the following passage interesting:

Gartner explained the market growth by pointing to increased interest in software-as-a-service (SaaS) tools, which offer a cheaper entry point, and a shift toward funding BPM projects from business-unit budgets rather than IT, reflecting an emphasis on BPM’s business benefits.

The combination with open sources creates another confirmation that IT (or even departmental management) is seriously considering such a type of solutions to become part of implementation.

What is my conclusion? Think about mindshare PLM vendors. The solution portfolio they are selling combined from multiple layers, components and functional pieces. BPM is one of them. IT is the organization PLM vendors need to convince as part of their selling process. I think, we can see an evidence of how this pattern is going to change. A simpler and cheaper solution is going to challenge larger BPM vendors. Open source play a revolutionary role in this trend. PLM vendors learned from large ERP companies how to sell solutions to large manufacturing firms. Is it going to change? I don’t know. Just my opinion…

Best, Oleg

Image: tungphoto /


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