Semiotic notation principles for business process modelling

  • Jaffar A
  • Shah H
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Abstract

Business Process Models use symbolic notations to represent business processes. Influenced by system engineering and mathematics, the application of these notations involves technical processes designed by engineers, undertaken by technically trained analysts for the use of largely technical people. However, the majority of business process stakeholders are non-technically inclined with a business or administrative background. While some notations are comprehensive, they can be visually and technically complex hindering effective understand. Others are arbitrary geometrical symbols where their intended semantics are unclear and confusing. While such representational constraints prevent effective communication of process knowledge, there is a lack of research evidence on theoretical principles justifying the choice and application of notations which can help to overcome the identified constraints. This paper proposes semiotics principles to overcome this deficiency in representing business process model. As the theoretical foundation for this proposal, it advocates the use of Peirce's semiotics triadic principles and Solomonick's principles on evolution of signs. A quantitative and qualitative comparative analysis confirmed that the proposed notation principles successfully identified the intuitively comprehensible notations and able to guide analysts to effectively model processes.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Business Process
  • Business process model
  • Business process modelling
  • Business process notations
  • Comparative analysis
  • Effective communication
  • Effective communications
  • Information systems
  • Mathematical models
  • Process knowledge
  • Semantics
  • Semiotics
  • Technical process
  • Theoretical foundations

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Authors

  • A Jaffar

  • H Shah

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