Thursday, May 30, 2013

Graphic Work Flows with Athento

Eng. Manuel Rueda
Having complex work flows – not those which are included as defaults in any DMS or ECM platformis a question of coding. That means that these phases and tasks need to be coded into a work flow so that the system begins to work with them. That’s the reason why there are tools which allow for the modeling of work flows in a more visual manner and which leave the boring work of coding behind; the application performs that work itself while users drag and drop the tasks, events, activities, etc., within their business processes.

The issue is that, after designing a work flow, it’s necessary to put it to work in a document management system or an ECM.

This week, our engineer Manuel Rueda, presented us with a new functionality for Athento which allows for the design of work flows in the JBoss open source tool, Drools. Manuel told us how it’s possible to graphically design a work flow in Guvnor, so that it can be used in Athento.

Guvnor is a Business Rules Manager, which means that it’s the part of Drools which can help us with our BPM (Business Process Management) flows. Below, you can see a screen grab of a Guvnor screen. 

What you see on this screen is the visual editor of Guvnor flows and an example of a work flow modeled with this tool. This work flow is, in reality, an XML file, as you can see in the next screenshot:

Athento has the ability to interpret this XML file (with its start events, end events, gateways, activities, adHoc subprocess, tasks, service tasks, connecting objects, sequence flows) in execution timewithout needing to re-boot the system so that it takes in the new work flow – and gets it to work. This saves a lot of time for both developers and business analysts.

Once the file with the work flow is uploaded, system users can start to use it. In the following screen grab, you can see a request within a process for requests for grants. The flow that the document is going through has been created by uploading an XML file which was generated in Drools.

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