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Did you know? – Attaching external resources within the Business Process Blueprinting tool

The following blog outlines how powerful the Project Documentation feature within the Business Process Blueprinting (BPB) tool can be. In general, it is about attaching external resources, such as URLs or SAP Notes. As an example the process flow visualization of a SAP NetWeaver BPM process will be used.

Objective:

Quite often “End-2-End” business scenarios span multiple systems – SAP and Non-SAP. To provide more transparency into those business scenarios, business blueprints can be used as the single point of access.

Let’s assume that a Business Process Expert has sketched a business blueprint with the BPB tool. The business blueprint contains a business scenario in which a specific business process shall be implemented by SAP NetWeaver BPM.  Once the Process Modeler has transformed the business requirements into an executable BPMN model (for more information see the blog http://scn.sap.com/people/markus.richter/blog/2012/01/16/part-2-re-use-business-blueprints-within-sap-netweaver-bpm), it would be quite convenient to have that executable BPMN process flow linked to the blueprint. This will allow business departments to verify whether certain business requirements have been correctly transformed.

The project documentation feature of the BPB tool provides this kind of transparency – even in heterogeneous landscapes. Consider the SAP NetWeaver BPM process visualization just as an example. You might have other web enabled artifacts that shall be linked to the business blueprint and shall be visible within the BPB tool itself.

How to attach external resources to a blueprint?

The Project Documentation section is located on different levels – Business Scenario and Business Process level. For attaching the process flow visualization to a business process, select the target business process and click on the Overview icon.

projectDocumenation.png

This will launch the General Documentation and Project Documentation screen. Switch to the Project Documentation and toggle to the Edit mode.

projectDocumenation2.png

Enter the URL from the process flow of the SAP NetWeaver BPM process into the BPB tool. Click on the Add button. Now enter a name, pick a documentation type, copy & paste the URL from the process flow visualization and click the OK button.

Note: The process flow visualization URL can be retrieved from the SAP NetWeaver Administrator tool. Below you will find a small description on how to do it.

BPB_InsertURL.png

A new item will appear within the Project Documentation section. The nice thing about this is that a click on that particular item will show the process visualization of the SAP NW BPM process inline the BPB tool. Clicking on the just created entry and entering the credentials for accessing the SAP NetWeaver Administrator, launches the attached process flow- like the following one:

SAPNW_ProcessFlow.png

Retrieving the process flow visualization URL

Getting the appropriate URL of the process flow is critical to the described use case. So where do you get it from? With respect to the process flow of SAP NetWeaver BPM, the SAP NetWeaver Administrator can be used for this purpose. Open it and navigate to SAP NetWeaver Administrator -> Configuration -> Processes and Tasks -> Process Repository. You will see a list of all deployed processes including their versions.

SAPNWAdmin_ProcessFlow.png

Highlight the target process flow and click on the Process Flow button. A new Browser window opens and shows the visualization of the process flow. Use the URL within this Browser window as the entry for the BPB tool.

Additional SDN References:

2 Comments
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  • Marcus,

         Great posting. This shows some hidden nuggets of being able to connect BPB with NetWeaver Process Orchestration. As you well point out, this could be used with another tool that makes the implementation of specific blueprint process steps. In our case, the natural extension is indeed with NW BPM.

         This enforces that Solution Manager continues to be the system of record when it comes to documenting the blueprint of processes and how different personas in the lifecycle can collaborate in bringing the end to end full picture from a documentation and implementation perspective.

         It is also worth pointing out that NW BPM processes can also be physically connected to blueprint processes from the BPB perspective distributed with NWDS so that from a IT perspective these assets are indeed linked and can be easily navigated.

         Great work !

                   Eduardo.

  • Hi Marcus,

    Great to see postings on BPB and Process Orchestration - to me this is one of those marriages that makes the total SAP BPMS more than just a workflow solution.  And this is exactly the sort of thing we need to be able to do on site.

    Looking forward to seeing more from you.

    Thanks!

    Jocelyn