Workflow Resource Patterns: Identification, Representation and Tool Support

  • Nick Russell
  • Wil M. P. van der Aalst
  • Arthur H. M. ter Hofstede
  • David Edmond
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 3520)


In the main, the attention of workflow researchers and workflow developers has focussed on the process perspective, i.e., control-flow. As a result, issues associated with the resource perspective, i.e., the people and machines actually doing the work, have been largely neglected. Although the process perspective is of most significance, appropriate consideration of the resource perspective is essential for successful implementation of workflow technology. Previous work has identified recurring, generic constructs in the control-flow and data perspectives, and presented them in the form of control-flow and data patterns. The next logical step is to describe workflow resource patterns that capture the various ways in which resources are represented and utilised in workflows. These patterns include a number of distinct groupings such as push patterns (“the system pushes work to a worker”) and pull patterns (“the worker pulls work from the system”) to describe the many ways in which work can be distributed. By delineating these patterns in a form that is independent of specific workflow technologies and modelling languages, we are able to provide a comprehensive treatment of the resource perspective and we subsequently use these patterns as the basis for a detailed comparison of a number of commercially available workflow management systems.


Workflow Patterns Resources Business Process Modelling 


  1. 1.
    van der Aalst, W.M.P.: Don’t go with the flow: Web services composition standards exposed. IEEE Intelligent Systems 18(1), 72–76 (2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    van der Aalst, W.M.P., ter Hofstede, A.H.M., Kiepuszewski, B., Barros, A.P.: Workflow Patterns. Distributed and Parallel Databases 14(1), 5–51 (2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    van der Aalst, W.M.P., Kumar, A.: Team-Enabled Workflow Management Systems. Data and Knowledge Engineering 38(3), 335–363 (2001)zbMATHCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    van der Aalst, W.M.P., Kumar, A., Verbeek, H.M.W.: Organizational Modeling in UML and XML in the context of Workflow Systems. In: Haddad, H., Papadopoulos, G. (eds.) Proceedings of the 18th Annual ACM Symposium on Applied Computing (SAC 2003), pp. 603–608. ACM Press, New York (2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Bussler, C., Jablonski, S.: Policy Resolution for Workflow Management Systems. In: Proceedings of the 28th Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences, p. 831. IEEE Computer Society, Los Alamitos (1995)Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Curbera, F., Goland, Y., Klein, J., Leymann, F., Roller, D., Thatte, S., Weerawarana, S.: Business Process Execution Language for Web Services, Version 1.0. Standards proposal by BEA Systems, International Business Machines Corporation, and Microsoft Corporation (2002)Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Ferraiolo, D.F., Sandhu, R., Gavrila, S., Kuhn, D.R., Chandramouli, R.: Proposed NIST Standard for Role-Based Access Control. ACM Transactions on Information and System Security 4(3), 224–274 (2001)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Kumar, A., van der Aalst, W.M.P., Verbeek, H.M.W.: Dynamic Work Distribution in Workflow Management Systems: How to Balance Quality and Performance?. Journal of Management Information Systems 18(3), 157–193 (2002)Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    zur Muehlen, M.: Workflow-based Process Controlling: Foundation, Design and Application of workflow-driven Process Information Systems. Logos, Berlin (2004)Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Rosemann, M., zur Muehlen, M.: Evaluation of Workflow Management Systems - a Meta Model Approach. Australian Journal of Information Systems 6(1), 103–116 (1998)Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Russell, N., ter Hofstede, A.H.M., Edmond, D., van der Aalst, W.M.P.: Workflow Data Patterns. QUT Technical report, FIT-TR-2004-01, Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane (2004),
  12. 12.
    Russell, N., ter Hofstede, A.H.M., Edmond, D., van der Aalst, W.M.P.: Workflow Resource Patterns. BETA Working Paper Series, WP 127, Eindhoven University of Technology, Eindhoven (2004),
  13. 13.
    WFMC. Workflow Management Coalition Workflow Standard: Workflow Process Definition Interface – XML Process Definition Language (XPDL) (WFMC-TC-1025). Technical report, Workflow Management Coalition, Lighthouse Point, Florida, USA (2002),

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nick Russell
    • 1
  • Wil M. P. van der Aalst
    • 1
    • 2
  • Arthur H. M. ter Hofstede
    • 1
  • David Edmond
    • 1
  1. 1.Centre for IT InnovationQueensland University of TechnologyBrisbaneAustralia
  2. 2.Department of Technology ManagementEindhoven University of TechnologyEindhovenThe Netherlands

Personalised recommendations