Model-Based Business Engineering, Blog by Dr. Juergen Pitschke, +49 351 30935193 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.g

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Complex or complicated - Make complexity your friend

We live in a world of slogans which are just empty. Frequently prominent voices are used for such slogans. E.g., Steve Jobs is often used with his quotes about "creating user interfaces as easy as possible". Many of these quotes are of context and doesn't tell a lot.

Do you think about these examples, everybody agrees, that using a system should be as easy as possible. But in the same way, everybody agrees, that controlling a nuclear power plant with an iPod is not a good idea. The solution has to be in sync with the problem. Sometimes a complex problem has a complex solution.

The slogan sometimes heard in the Business Analysis community "Complexity is the enemy" is not comprehensible to me as our example, that it should be possible to control a nuclear power plant with an iPad. We describe Business Processes taking different views. Sometimes the Flow of Activities, the collaboration of different participants in the Business Process, conformity with legal requirements, automation of parts of the process or complete Business Process are frequent questions. We describe the different views on different abstraction level.

For me, the meaning of complex is different to the word complicated. Complexity is a precondition for the development of organizations, the stability of solutions. The human organism is complex by reason more complex (and more complicated) as the organism of an amoeba.

We speak a lot about Agility, Agile Development, Business Agility, Agile Innovation, ... These are buzzword everybody connects an own meaning. A connecting element is the request to be able to react fast to changing requirements and change in the business context. But not only fast, but with less effort as in the past, conform to legal requirements.

Complexity can be a blocking point. A more complex solution can be difficult to maintain, it is more difficult to recognize improvements and to realize them. But this means that we should avoid complicated solutions if possible and do them only when necessary, and that also complex solutions must be maintainable, adaptable and ready for improvement.

In model-driven engineering, I experience frequently the request, that a certain "thing" (system, collaboration, business process, business decision) must be described "on one page". Such models are simple and not complicated. But often such models are not easy to maintain. Possibly they miss important aspects. We speak about "Separation of Concerns" for a long time to make also complex models easy to maintain and complete. E.g., we argue that Business Rules and Business Decisions should not be mixed with Business Processes. How are these artifacts connected is an essential question we have to answer in our Business Architecture. How does the Business Strategy influence the design our Business Processes? Which Business Rules are relevant for which Business Activity? Which Systems are needed for which Business Processes?

So I change my statement to "Embrace complexity - make it your friend!".

Agile Teams – Generalists – Specialists – Generalizing Specialists

Agility – Business Agility – Agile Modelling

Some days ago Scott Ambler published a post, talking about “Generalizing Specialists”. (

Even is Scott is talking about IT Skills and Agility in software development, I’m a fan of Scotts ideas and believe that they are also valid and important in Business Analysis. Scott is always formulating to the point. We can learn a lot in Business Analysis too.

The strong separation between „Business Agility” (see „The Business Agility Manifesto“ by R. Ross, R. Burlton, J. Zachmann;  and classical Agile approaches is inexplicable for me. If we talk about digitization and automation, both teams need to work together.

The question of agile development and specialization was raised by me a long period ago already once. (


Agile Teams – Generalists – Specialists – Generalizing Specialists

Especially in the business world we always pretend that Business Analysts are Jack-of-all-Traits, having all skills, able to do everything. I believe that we expect too much from our analysts and miss possible results.

There are more and more concepts of interest. A process is more than a flow; we are interested in flexible, knowledge intense processes. Legal requirements and possible improvements require the systematic management of decisions.

To handle all these concepts we need skills and knowledge about notations and working techniques-

Sure every analyst should know about Business Process Management. But special questions require special skills.

More essential for me the term „Agility“ is associated with working techniques and organization of teams and collaboration.


BCS/Qualiware Webinar 25.1.2018, 3 pm CET

unternehmensarchitekturQualiware and BCS - Dr. Juergen Pitschke started a cooperation. Two important elements in the area "Enterprise Architecture" come together. Qualiware offers a leading software solution, supporting different notations - from BPN to DMN - and offering essential functions for creatinng, maintaining and using an Enterprise Architecture. This inckudes not only creating such models on different levels of abstraction, but also functions for creating reports and analysis or web collaboration. BCS offers a comprehensive method, containing proven working techniques securing long term usage and maintainance. Together we want to support customers in Germany in a better way.

In our joint webinar "Creating a structured business architecture with QualiWare" we present us and show how you can benefit. The webinar will be held in English.
Please register at:

Look forward to meet you