The Internet of Things and Process: Process Must Step Up the Awareness Factor

Jim   Sinur
Jim Sinur VP and Research Fellow, Aragon Research Read Author Bio || Read All Articles by Jim Sinur

While the Internet of Things (IoT) promises more process participation, processes are not being designed with enough awareness to step up to the coming demands.  Processes need to step up their cognition another level — beyond simply responding to being called or just being triggered when needed.  I see a need for processes to have the ability to have the following three kinds of increased awareness.

1.  Through Pre-planned Signals and Patterns

Processes do well when they respond to planned stimulation (through data, triggers, or beckoned response).  Analysts, designers, and programmers know how to get this done, but they do not understand the amount of trigger points (external or internally-generated) that are going to emerge with fury as the relation of process and IoT grows.  This may become overwhelming at some point as unknowns become visible and understood as something to respond to in the future.  This may become explosive in nature as organizations learn to deal with the volume generated by the IoT and agents.

2.  Through Reactive Unknown Signals and Patterns

How many times are business professionals, analysts, and developers taken by surprise signals and patterns that need attention?  This is going to happen and accelerate over time, so those organizations that can transform the unknowns to knowns the fastest will out-perform those that don't. Processes need to be equipped to catch unknown signals and patterns and inform the process managers and participants who need to consider measured responses.

3.  Through Proactive Context Scans for Signals and Patterns

Another approach to awareness is to have processes check context for new and unusual patterns and to have those patterns match against expected and unexpected threats or opportunities.  Organizations that do scenario planning, both likely and unlikely, will have an advantage to seek out patterns that represent scenarios of interest.  This will allow organizations to turn way from reactive approaches only.

Net; Net

The best approach is to employ all three of these methods of building awareness in the proper balance for a point in time.  But any increase in process awareness is a good thing.  As we head into a very interactive world, rife with M2M, H2M, M2H, and H2H interactions, the awareness to identify better alternative practices will become important.

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Standard citation for this article:


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Jim Sinur , "The Internet of Things and Process: Process Must Step Up the Awareness Factor" Business Rules Journal Vol. 16, No. 2, (Feb. 2015)
URL: http://www.brcommunity.com/a2015/b798.html

About our Contributor:


Jim   Sinur
Jim Sinur VP and Research Fellow, Aragon Research

Jim Sinur is an independent consultant and thought leader in applying business process management (BPM) to innovative and intelligent business operations (IBO). His research and areas of personal experience focus on business process innovation, business modeling, business process management technology (BPMT), processes collaboration for knowledge workers, process intelligence/optimization, business policy/rule management (BRMS), and leveraging business applications in processes. Mr. Sinur was critical in creating the first Hype Cycle and Maturity Model, which have become a hallmark of Gartner analysis, along with the Magic Quadrant. He has been active in the rules, data and computing communities, helping shape direction based on practical experience. Mr. Sinur has vertical industry experience on the investment and operational sides of the insurance and financial services.

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