While I’m not doing much these days in the BPM space, I did recently have lunch with a friend of mine who works for Genesys Lab. I don’t normally talk about vendor products by name, but the iWD (intelligent Workload Distribution) product had a different enough approach from things I’ve seen that I thought I’d share it. In the spirit of full disclosure, I’m doing this on my own time (and dime), simply because I thought the solution was interesting. Hopefully you will too.
In the past, the BPMSs that I dealt with (and the businesses trying to use them) were primarily focused on process automation and process management. Process automation tries to automate as many of the tasks within the process as possible. More importantly, the tools tried to put a process centric view around collections of tasks so that they could be more effectively managed. When successfully applied, these tools have delivered an increase in productivity, but there’s still plenty of room for more improvement. This is where iWD comes in.
iWD, as the name implies, focuses on the distribution of the manual tasks associated with business processes. It is not a BPM tool on its own, rather, it is solely focused on the distribution of tasks from your systems to the individuals that will execute them. Based on what I saw, you can think of iWD as a context-aware distribution engine. In some tools, a “worker” logs into the queue associated with a particular process and takes the next item off the queue. What if they’re not the most qualified for that task? What if there are other tasks associated with another process that are more important? What if customers have varying SLAs that cause one customer’s tasks to take precedence over another’s. By taking into account the customer and any associated SLAs, the skills and location of the workforce, and other factors, tasks can be distributed from across all processes to the global workforce in a more efficient manner.
Anyway, with context become increasing important in today’s systems, most commonly associated with location-based services, I thought this was a great example of using a variety of contextual items to improve the distribution of tasks in a BPM system. You can learn more by visiting the Genesys Lab website here. I’d love to hear other examples of context-aware computing, feel free to comment or send me a message.