Ajax, RSS and Microsoft Office integrations target business-process tools to users, not just analysts and developers.
The new Ajax tools and RSS integration will likely prove particularly useful, as many of the people implementing BPM are not developers; the browser-based environment enables them to add business processes without installing Eclipse or understanding XML. Users will also be helped by the integration with Microsoft Office, though competitors such as Lombardi also offer this. Appian can work with most of the major Enterprise Service Bus (ESB) and service-oriented architecture (SOA) vendors, but is extremely skeptical of the proposed BPEL4People standard, which aims to add BPM to ESB and SOA, describing it as little more than a short whitepaper. Andy Dornan NWC Senior Technology Editor
Appian this week launched a new version of its business process management (BPM) suite that includes a slew of tools focusing on end-user, rather than developer, interaction with the software.
BPM software is complex, but in the end is designed to help users improve how a business runs. To address that issue, Appian Enterprise 5.6 focuses strongly on end-user productivity tools to help casual business users interact with the software, Appian said.