As I mentioned in September, I’ve been engaged by the stewards of the Process Knowledge Initiative (PKI) to expedite the boring, yet critical, start-up activities to create the foundation for the development of an open source body of knowledge focused on business process management.
Over the last month, we’ve progressed on the “more interesting” aspects, including defining the technical (really content) team structure and announcing the technical (again, content) experts and advisors.
This morning, in the BPTrends Advisor, Paul Harmon, co-chair of the technical integration team, published an update on the PKI (PDF), which included his perspective on the value of the to-be-delivered body of knowledge (PKBoK).
“As I have watched the PKI initiative gather momentum, I have become more excited about the potential of this effort. When I first began to talk about the PKI effort I emphasized that it would support the creation of a common understanding of process and process work. One hardly needs to edit a website like BPTrends.com to be aware of the variety of definitions that are in widespread use and the belief that anything that standardizes usage will make it easier to communicate the process perspective to business managers.
As I have worked with the PKI during the last few months I have begun to evolve a slightly different understanding of the value of the effort. I continue to believe that standard definitions are important, but I begin to see where PKI can contribute even more to the process field. The PKI is focused on defining a high level overview of the field and specifying high level tasks and techniques. We do not plan on defining the tasks and techniques in great detail since most of the tasks and techniques have already been defined by other groups. What I now envision is a circular target with a process definition in the center. Surrounding that, there are knowledge areas where process concepts are used. In the next circle, there are the tasks that describe the work process people undertake. In the next circle out, each task is associated with techniques. And, beyond techniques there are pointers to organizations and books that define specific techniques. Figure 1 below, represents a pie shaped slice from such an imaginary target.”
I think Paul’s pie slice is a great depiction of our intent. We don’t want to reinvent the process field. We want to help navigate it. Think of the PKBoK as ‘the Wikipedia of BPM’.
Want to help? Visit the Process Knowledge Initiative website for more information.
[Disclosure: The Process Knowledge Initiative is a client of Elemental Links.]