Using IBM Business Process Management 7.5 platform Process Designer

In the first post of this series we have described capabilities of IBM’s BPM platform and today we will take a closer look at Process Designer component, capable of designing and executing BPMN business processes. IBM Process Designer (PD) is a heritage of WebSphere Lombardi Edition and according to IBM enables you to model and implement your business processes and easily demonstrate process design and functionality during development efforts. In this post I will show you how to create and execute a simple process using PD.

First, we need to create a new Process  App – a container for all business process artifacts. To do this, we open Process Center perspective in PD and click Create New Process App in top right corner of the screen.

Enter the required details and click Create.

After Process App has been created, select Open in Designer.

Now we need to create a new Business Process Definition. To do so, move to Processes section in the right menu, click the + sign and select Business Process Definition. Enter process name (Order Confirmation) and click Finish.

Now we have a process pool with two lanes, one for human participant and one for system activities and we can begin to construct business process flow by dragging activities from toolbar on the right.

For the purpose of this demonstration we will use a simple order conformation process, consisting of the following activities:

  • human participant will submit a new order
  • system will check if the order is valid
  • if order is valid, system will execute it, other ways it will reject it
  • participant will be notified about success or failure

To design abovementioned business flow, we drag and drop five Activities and two Conditional splits/joins and appropriately link them together. Be careful to select Decision Gateway (XOR) behavior in properties for the first split/join and Conditional Join (OR) for the second one.

Now we have to prepare business objects and variables for our process. To do this, we select Variables tab and click Add Private. We name our variable order and click new for Variable Type. We create a new Business Object named Order and containing four fields – id (String), description (String), value (Decimal) and status (String). When defining variables, we preferably also check the Has Default box in the settings on the right, so that we avoid potential null pointer exceptions when accessing uninitialized parts of variables.

With business object and variable ready, we can now implement our activities. First, we will implement Submit casino online canada Order as human service. To do so, right click on activity and select Activity Wizard. This opens a new dialog, where we can edit service name and type. Click next to proceed to parameters definition. Here, we have listed all available variables (in our case only one) and we can select which variables we want to pass to activity and which will be returned. Submit order activity will receive and return same order variable, so make sure that both input and output are set to true. After confirming the dialog, we can double click the activity to open its implementation. Human task forms are called Coaches and provide quite a lot of customization capabilities, but for our demo we will only use the default layout.

Receive Feedback activity is also a human task, therefore we implement it in the same manner as we implemented Submit Order.

Validate Order, Confirm Order and Reject Order are automated activities and for the purpose of this demonstration we will implement them using javascript. To do so, we select an activity and go to Implementation tab in Properties view. We select JavaScript from available implementation types and write custom script. Using tw object, we can access variables or process details.  In Validate Order activity we will check whether user has provided description and value of an order. If yes, we will set order status to valid and invalid other ways.

In Confirm Order activity we similarly set order status to approved and we provide an id for an order using process instance identifier.

tw.local.order.status = “approved”;

tw.local.order.id = “O#”+tw.system.currentProcessInstance.id+”/11”;

In Confirm Order activity we only set order status to rejected.

 

We are almost done, all there is left to do is to provide a condition to determine whether order is valid or not. To achieve this, select gateway and open Implementation tab in Properties view. Using arrows on the right make No(Reject Order) path the default one and then enter condition for the Yes path as shown in picture.

Now we are ready to execute our process using orange play button in the top right corner of the screen. At this point we are transferred into Inspector perspective, where we can monitor the current state of the process and execute human tasks, available in the upper right part of the screen.  We open an available task using play button and after we complete a task, we need to refresh process to view the progress it has made.

Till next time :)

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5 Comments for Using IBM Business Process Management 7.5 platform Process Designer

Coach Views in IBM BPM v8.0-SOA Competence Center | May 30, 2012 at 9:13 am

[…] For demonstrational purposes, we will use an existing proces app and an empty Process Order business process definition (bpd) as shown in figure 1. In version 8.0, the procedure of creating these is fairly similar than in version 7.5, which is described here. […]

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