December 4, 2009

Archimate and type-instance

A while ago I blogged about why Archimate needs type-instance. The "specialization relation" already exists, but I hardly ever see it used consistently at the business process level. However, it can be quite convenient to use this type of relation when modeling generic processes which can be specialized for specific circumstances.

For one of my clients I am currently working with a group of architects who wish to model such a thing. The problem they face is the following:
  • clients of the organization report changes in their situation (e.g. moving abroad, getting married, etcetera). This is called a "customer event" and is modelled using the business event type in Archimate
  • customer events are always dealt with in a similar manner. In other words, there is a generic "handle customer event" process
  • depending on the event, different products may be applicable to the client. This implies that, depending on the event, different versions of the handle customer event must be assembled
I've been working on different ways of modeling this. What I've come up with so far is this solution:

The model uses a color-view to show which processes / events are generic and which are specific. The idea is that specific events (e1, e1) trigger specific processes (handle e1, handle e2). Even more, specific delivery processes are "plugged in". The type-instance relations between events and the different processes are "modelying hygene" that, for example, make sure that the plugged in processes are connected to their generic counterpart (process event).

Note: in more realistic settings I wouldn't use this view to inform stakeholders as it probably contains too much detail. It does show the structure that I'm thinking off, though.
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