Lightweight Process Support with Spreadsheet-Driven Processes: A Case Study in the Finance Domain

Universität Ulm

Presentation at the 10th Workshop on Social and Human Aspects of Business Process Management (BPMS2'17), BPM 2017 Workshops;

Michael Stach, Barcelona, Spain, 11 September 2017, 9:30 AM

The use of process management technology constitutes a salient factor for a multitude of business domains as it particularly addresses the flexibility demands of the digital enterprise. Still, spreadsheet applications are more likely to be used in many scenarios in which process management technology appears to be a more appropriate solution. Especially in the context of human-centric and knowledge-intensive processes, spreadsheets are widely used, even if more business-tailored applications exist. For example, financial service providers, like banks or insurers, prefer spreadsheet applications for accomplishing their daily business. However, this kind of usage reveals drawbacks when working collaboratively based on the same spreadsheet document. To remedy these drawbacks, we suggest the use of spreadsheet-driven processes, which shall combine the advantages of traditional process management technology with the ones of spreadsheets. Using a sophisticated scenario from the financial domain, this paper shows how spreadsheet-driven processes improve collaborative work, as required in the context of business processes, significantly. Moreover, a proof-of-concept prototype is presented to evaluate the approach in practice. Altogether, first results indicate that spreadsheet-driven processes may be a promising technical solution for everyday business involving human resources.

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