IDERA's ER/Studio Business Architect allows you to draw both Conceptual Models and Business Process Models. Business Process Models use the BPMN standard. The first version of BPMN was released in May of 2004. Since then organizations have been using this notation to help to identify their business processes.
In case you are unfamiliar with BPMN, here is a 3 ½ minute BPMN primer that explains what BPMN is/does:
As mentioned in the video, BPMN 2.0 is a 537 page standard that outlines the BPMN elements and when you should use them. Organizations can then use this standard to easily communicate business processes across their organization. Additionally, since it is the industry standard for communicating business processes, new Business Analysts who have worked for different companies and different industries can quickly come up to speed in reviewing your processes.
BPMN covers 4 different types of diagrams:
- Standard Process Diagrams – used to indicate one group’s processes
- Collaboration Diagrams – used to indicate the processes that flow between groups/participants
- Choreography Diagrams – used to indicate processes that require input/feedback between groups/participants
- Conversation Diagrams – complex diagrams used to indicate the processes that flow between a variety of different groups
Creating Business Process Models with ER/Studio Business Architect
Most people know about ER/Studio Data Architect but few people know about Data Architect's little sister – "ER/Studio Business Architect". Business Architect is currently available as a standalone product as well as part of the ER/Studio Enterprise Team Edition collection of tools.
Business Architect includes modeling tools for Conceptual Models and Business Process Models.
Conceptual Models are a great tool to explain complex data at a very high level to business users. Currently you can convert Conceptual models to Logical models (and vice versa) between Business Architect and Data Architect.
Business Process Models can be used to help explain what is happening within a business via its processes and how those processes interact with each other as well as how they interact with the business data.