Translate Models and Diagrams

Convert content between different tools and standards.

In these times of global business and IT’s increasing use of cloud techniques organizational and enterprise business process architecture are best described by models and diagrams. This is very valuable meta-information describing the organization in various business and IT aspects. It is common practice within large organizations to have different modeling and governance tools, repositories and execution engines which are used for Enterprise Architecture Management (EAM), Business Process Analysis (BPA), Workflow Design (BPMN, XPDL, BPEL) or Software Design (UML, SysML) Just to mention some disciplines where models and diagrams are used to describe the reality of business, IT and compliance. The different modeling and execution tools can be summarized by the term Enterprise Management tools.

BPM-X provides universal translation of existing documentation assets like model data and visual diagrams. Data can be converted and exchanged between different Enterprise Management tools, technical formats, modeling languages or frameworks.

BPM X Translate Models

Common use cases for BPM-X are:

  • An Enterprise Management tool is in the end-of-lifecycle phase and should be replaced by another tool.
  • A system integrator offers best practices and model deliverables from the blueprint phase of an application program that should be integrated into the organization’s standard (tool, modeling language and framework).
  • There is content available in tools that should be used as an accelerator for an upcoming BPM or SOA project and needs to be translated into a new format.
  • For publishing of process models and handing over project deliverables, the widely used Microsoft Visio® with BPM-X’s built in and robust extension can be used instead of expensive tools.

Usually model data and diagrams are exported from tools into a specific XML data scheme. The BPM-X tool reads the model and diagrams from this data and translates them into the technical data format suitable for the desired target format. Along with the technical data transformation, the model object structure that is governed by a meta-model is converted as well. In addition the translation of the visual diagram is performed.
The BPM-X Universal Translator tool provides much more sophisticated conversion compared to simple ETL (extract load transform) tools: in addition to the technical format the object structures and visual appearance of diagrams are translated.

Strategic advantages

Translation of models and diagrams move initiatives forward faster, guarantee continuous improvement and establish agility to react faster on business requirements bringing and keeping you ahead of the competition. BPM-X offers unique market capabilities that offer:  

  • Independence from tool vendors; not being locked-in.
  • Substantial time and money savings resulting from high quality automatic translation of models.
  • Sustainable investment in model and diagram assets conforming to standards.
  • Cost reductions by enabling the coexistence and cooperation of appropriate tools for specific EAM and BPM initiatives.
  • Optimization of license fee structure, maintenance efforts, training and support costs by linking preexistent Office tools with more complex tools.
  • Building integrated landscapes of Enterprise Management tools for more agile projects.

Manage model and diagram translation

BPM-X conducts the translation of models and diagrams by the deployment of tool specific plug & play adapters used for the technical processing of specific data formats. The data can be a flat file, XML, CSV, web services like REST, RFC or SOAP, database services or any other interface technology.  In addition to the technical processing the two built-in BPM-X mapping engines are translating object structures and diagram layouts by a set of translation rules, specific to the modeling languages.

With the BPM-X Administrator tool these translation rules are described and stored in a configuration file. In this way it is possible to specify which concepts of a source format should be translated into concepts of the target format. As in the simplest example; it can be defined that an "activity" object shall be converted into a "function" object, an "actor" into a "role". Additionally more complicated transformation rules described by source and target patterns can be designed. This pattern-based transformation comes into the game if transformation rules between objects are dependent on the objects relative context. In this manner different model descriptions can be transformed into each other such as flowcharts, EPC, BPMN or UML as well as the numerous specific or legacy formats of different tools.

Predefined transformation rules are available for most of the Enterprise Management tools to be used as best practice accelerators and customized for the needs of projects.

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