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Which BPMN elements do you actually use?

By on Mar 1st, 2009
Filed Under Industry Trends // Tags:

The research Michael zur Muehlen conducted and presented in “How much BPMN do you need?” validates my practical experience: “the average BPMN model uses less than 20% of the available vocabulary”.

This statistic is not a bad thing.  The fact that BPMN can be useful to so many people without requiring a complete understading of every element of the standard is indeed a great indication of the relevance, simplicity, and flexibility BPMN provides.  Some feel a lack of training contributes to the average model consisting “of just 9 different symbols”, which suggests that people “need” more than they actually use.  That may be the case, and if it is, as BPMN becomes more commonplace, more of the vocabulary will certainly be utilized broadly.

So, perhaps the article would have been more concretely titled “How much BPMN do you acually use?”, which is precisely the time-sensitive, practical information that vendors, organizations, and people can use in determing the maturity of their own BPMN efforts.

Though we are not a typical BPMN “software vendor” in the way that Michael zur Muehlen refers, we are indeed faced with understadning the most important and critical features users take advantage of while modeling business processes.  Supporting multiple specifications as we do requires a huge effort, helped only by educated prioritizing on where to spend our energy.

Following is part of the chart you can find at “How much BPMN do you need?” showing the most used elements from BPMN. Thank you, Michael zur Muehlen, for sharing your findings.

BPMN Construct Usage

BPMN Construct Usage

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