Friday, 13 March 2009

FREE Mapping & Modelling Survey Report Now Available

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At last, after weeks of poring over the details and reading the responses, the report is now available. The report gathers together the thoughts and responses from over 500 people around the globe, making it probably the most comprehensive report on the subject to date. In addition to the collation of the survey response I have also included commentary on a number of the topics raised by the survey.

The report at 48 pages provides a detailed analysis of what tools people are using, which methods they are using and what features they rate or use in their tools. Some of the results may surprise you, they certainly surprised me!

Process mapping and modelling is a key skill for successful BPM or SOA projects, yet it is still one of the least understood and least valued disciplines. Given the long history this might be surprising, but it also seems that at least some of the indifference may be down to the number of methods in use and the large number of people who do non-technology process improvement and for whom many of the tools are just too complicated and too expensive.

One of the early readers of the report Dave Curry, Director of Process at Vertex says "The report provides an excellent analysis of survey results relative to the use of process modelling tools. The comparison of perceptions by end users, consultants, and vendors along with the commentary analyzing the results provides the added value." While Jerome Pearce, Executive Director Process Mapping Pty Ltd added "This is fascinating. I don't think I have seen the results of a survey that interested me quite as much."

It was certainly fun to contrast the views of end users with those of vendors and consultants and I am very grateful to all those who shared their thoughts and opinions so freely.

You can access your own personal copy of the report from


Anonymous said...

Process Modeling is still little understood, as you suggest in your article, for several reasons.

Firstly, much of what is modeled and called "process' is in fact "procedure". Sadly, few people in the industry know the difference. Basically Process is "What" and Procedure is "How".

Secondly, Processes Modeling is often used to model trivial processes. This makes it a sledge hammer to crack a walnut.

Thirdly, using Process Modeling as a Primary Business Modeling technique is a flawed approach that creates over 300% more diagrams than are necessary and misses out up to 50% of core business activity. This causes confusion and and complication that result in lack of credibility.

The Core modeling technique for any Business should be Function Modeling. The Integrated Modeling Method takes this approach and provides a much simpler, powerful and elegant approach than the "process centric" approach.

Mark McGregor said...

Hi John

Thanks, you can find more of my comments on Procedure vs Process on an earlier blog post at

I agree with most of your first three paragraphs, but perhaps not so much with your last paragraph.

I think that when we have people talk about function modelling there is a tendency for them to be able to stay in their functional/organisational mindset and thus become too focussed on the who does what rather than just the "what". Instead my personal preference is to educate people on how better to look at their process structure from top to bottom. This may be because I am not trying to sell a method, just trying to teach/help people to make better use of what they already have. It is difficult to see really how the IMM you have is different without buying your eBooks.

My personal aim through my own writing, reports and talks is to aid understanding and provide as much of that understanding free of charge as possible. Yes, I confess I hope it leads to training revenue for me :-) but in the main my focus is on re-use rather than suggesting or selling new methods.

Unknown said...

Post is so informative. I like your survey report.