Support for Workflow Process Collaboration

  • Jay Ramanathan


Global competition has created a tremendous need to streamline the total collection of activities (or the workflow process) by which high-quality products are designed, maintained, and serviced. To meet this need, companies are embarking on practices like integrated product-process design and team-oriented management. These practices attempt to identify and address different types of constraints early during design to reduce problems and iterations in “downstream” activities. Numerous individuals must then apply these practices when developing each product component. Given that various disciplines and departments are also involved, the problem of managing the workflow process is quite complex. Furthermore, existing applications developed over the years must somehow be leveraged in any solution. A fundamental challenge addressed here is to develop process-driven information systems to actively assist the way in which each worker, within each department or job category, performs each one of these activities correctly. By ensuring correctness and timeliness within the context of the overall workflow process, dramatic cost and cycle-time reductions are achievable while producing quality products.


Concurrent Engineering Product Data Management Activity Decomposition Provide Decision Support Queue Time 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. [ACM, 1991]
    Computer supported cooperative work. Communications of The ACM,34(12).Google Scholar
  2. [Almy, 1991]
    Almy, D., and Ramanathan, J. “Enterprise Workflow Management: Implementation and Observations.” IDEF Users Group Conference.Google Scholar
  3. [Althoff, 1990]
    Althoff, J. L. CPIM. An implementation of the ANSI/SPARC threeschema architecture. Conference Reading, Society of Manufacturing Engineers.Google Scholar
  4. [AMICE, 1989]
    Open system architecture for CIM. ESPRIT Consortium AMICE (Eds.). New York: Springer Verlag: Project 688, AMICE, Vol. 1.Google Scholar
  5. [Ashok, 1987]
    Ashok, V. A knowledge-based software development assistant. DECUS Symposium, 1987.Google Scholar
  6. [Blattner and Ramanathan, 1979]
    Blattner, M., and Ramanathan, J. Attributed meta-forms for high level design and analysis of algorithms. Proceedings of the Conference on Information Sciences and Systems, April.Google Scholar
  7. [Buffmn, 1981]
    Buffum, H. E. Air force computer-aided manufacturing (AFCAM) master plan. Volume III Analytic Tools, AFML-TR-74–104, AFWAL/MLT, WPAFB, OH 45433, 1981.Google Scholar
  8. [CALS, 1991]
    A framework for concurrent engineering. CALS Technical Report 003, CALS Industry Steering Group, Suite 300, 1025 Connecticut Avenue, NW Washington DC 20036, Tel. (202) 775–1440, Report of the CE Framework Task Group of the CALS/CE Industry Steering Group, CALS TR 003 March 13, 1991.Google Scholar
  9. [Chandrasekaran and Johnsonson, 1992]
    Chandrasekaran, B., and T. R. Johnsonson. Communications of the Association for Computing Machinery,35(9), 124–136.Google Scholar
  10. [Chen, 1976]
    Chen, P. P. S. The entity-relationship model: Towards a unified view of data. ACM Transactions, Database Systems,1(1), 9–36.Google Scholar
  11. [Codd, 1979]
    Codd, E. F. Extending the database relational model to capture more meaning. ACM Transactions, Database Systems,4(4), 395–434.Google Scholar
  12. [Curtis, 1992]
    Curtis, B. Process modeling. Communications of the ACM,35(9).Google Scholar
  13. [EIF, 1990]
    Enterprise integration framework workshop briefing. IBM Federal Sector Division, Route 17C, Owego, NYB827–1298, 1990.Google Scholar
  14. [Fisksel, 1989]
    Fisksel, J., and Kayes-Roth, F. Knowledge systems for planning support. Cimflex Teknowledge Corporation, IEEE Expert, Fall, 1989.Google Scholar
  15. [Gupta and Madnick, 1987]
    Gupta, A., and Madnick, S. Knowledge-based integrated information systems development methodologies plan. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Knowledge-based Integrated Information Systems Engineering (KBIISE) Report, Vol. 2, 1987.Google Scholar
  16. [tars and Scheer, 1992]
    Hars, A., and Scheer, A.-W. Extending data modeling to cover the whole enterprise. Communications of the ACM, 35(9).Google Scholar
  17. [IRDS, 1991]
    Information Resource Dictionary System. ANSI X3H4, Working Draft, ATIS, October, 1991.Google Scholar
  18. [Ishii, 1991]
    Ishii, H. Toward an open-shared workspace: Computer and video fusion approach of team workstation. Communications of the ACM, 34(12) Google Scholar
  19. [Kannapan, 1993]
    Kannapan, S. M. Structuring and coordinating information in product development.Google Scholar
  20. [KIDS, 1990]
    Knowledge integrated design system, WRDC, Contract No. F33615–89-C-5619,1990.Google Scholar
  21. [Klein, 1993]
    Klein, M. Capturing design rationale in concurrent engineering terms. Computer, 226(1),39–47.Google Scholar
  22. [Krasner, 1992]
    Krasner, H. Lessons learned from a software process modeling system. Communications of the ACM,35(9).Google Scholar
  23. [Kyung, 1991]
    Kyung, M. Designing for cooperation. Communications of the Association for Computing Machinery,34(12), 65–73.Google Scholar
  24. [Mayer, 1989]
    Mayer, R. J. Ed. Analysis of methods. Knowledge-based Systems Laboratory, Department of Industrial Engineering, Texas AandM University, College Station, Texas, 77843, 1989.Google Scholar
  25. [Mayer, 1993]
    Mayer, R. J. Information integration for concurrent engineering (IICE). IDEF3 Process Description Capture Method Report, AL-TR-1992–0057, Knowledge-based Systems Incorporated, 2726 Longmire, College Station, Texas 77845, 1993.Google Scholar
  26. [Monarchi, 1992]
    Monarchi. A research typology for object-oriented analysis and design. Communications of the ACM, 35(9), September, 1992.Google Scholar
  27. [Navathe, 1992]
    Navathe, S. B. The evolution of data modeling for databases. Communications of the ACM, 35(9), 112–123.Google Scholar
  28. [Ramana, 1993]
    Ramana, Y. V. Reddy, Srinivas, K., Jagannathan, V., and Karinthi, R. Computer support for concurrent engineering. Computer, 26(1).Google Scholar
  29. [Ramanathan, 1987]
    Ramanathan, J. Knowledge-based assistance for design-in-the- large. Second International Symposium on Knowledge Engineering, Spain, 1987.Google Scholar
  30. [Ramanathan, 1992]
    Ramanathan, J. Process versus data management technologies. Conference Proceedings, Autofact, Society of Manufacturing Engineers, P.O. Box 930, Dearborn, MI, 48121, 1992.Google Scholar
  31. [Ramanathan, 1993]
    Ramanathan, J. Object-based integrated design workstation. Final Technical Report, 1993.Google Scholar
  32. [Ramanathan and Sarkar, 1988]
    Ramanathan, J., and Sarkar, S. Providing customized assistance for life-cycle approaches. IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering, SE 14(6),749–758.Google Scholar
  33. [Ross, 1977]
    Ross, D. T. Structured analysis (SA): A language for communicating ideas. IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering Google Scholar
  34. [Sarkar, 1989]
    Sarkar, S. The design of a software environment architecture based on executable process descriptions. The Ohio State University, Computer and Information Sciences Department, 2036 Neil Avenue Mall, Columbus, Ohio 43210, 1989.Google Scholar
  35. [Seybold, 1992]
    Seybold, P. B. Office Computing Group Report, Vol. 15, No. 9, 1992.Google Scholar
  36. [STARS, 1991]
    Software Technology for Adaptable, Reliable Systems (STARS) Program, Software Process Tools and Techniques Evaluation Report, Version 1.0, Contract No. F19628–88-D-0032, ESD/AVS, Electronic Systems Division, Air Force Systems Command, Hanscom Air Force Base, MA 01731–5000, 1991.Google Scholar
  37. [U.S. Department of Commerce, 1993]
    Functional Process Improvement, DOD 8020.1–M, Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense, Washington, DC 203013040. U.S. Department of Commerce, National Technical Information Service, 5285 Port Royal Road, Springfield, VA 22161, Commercial Telephone: 1–703–4874650, 1993.Google Scholar
  38. [Waldron, 1988]
    Waldron, M. B. Modeling of the design process. In Yoshikawwa and Gossard (Eds.), Proceedings of IFIP Working Group 5.2 Workshop on Intelligent CAD. North Holland, 1988.Google Scholar
  39. [Waldron and Waldron, 1988]
    Waldron, M. B., and Waldron, K. J. A time sequence study of complex mechanical system design. Design Studies, 0142–694X18810209512, Butterworth and Company (Publishers) Ltd., Vol. 9, No. 2, April, 1988.Google Scholar
  40. [Williams, 1990]
    Williams, T. J. The purdue reference model for computer integrated manufacturing from the viewpoint of industrial automation. SME Conference Proceedings, 1990 Update Standards in Industrial Automation Status and Future, May 14–16, 1990.Google Scholar
  41. [WRDC, 1990]
    DAPro project integrated information support system (IISS) enterprise integration framework. Technical Report Prepared by Control Data Corporation for Manufacturing Technology Directorate, WRDC, Air Force Systems Command, WPAFB, Dayton, Ohio, Vol. V, Part 50, September 30, 1990.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jay Ramanathan

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations