Thursday, March 5, 2015

Paper: Evidence that virtual worlds improve business process elicitation

Our paper "Virtual Business Role-play: Leveraging Familiar Environments to Prime Stakeholder Memory during Process Elicitation," has been accepted for CaISE 2015 in Stockholm, Sweden.  This paper is a product of an Honours thesis by my student Joel Harman, in collaboration with Stefanie Rinderle-Ma (Uni. Vienna), Daniel Johnson (QUT) and Udo Kannengiesser (Metasonic GmbH).  

The paper is stored here at QUT eprints, contact me on if you want a pdf copy.

Abstract. Business process models have traditionally been an effective way of examining business practices to identify areas for improvement. While common information gathering approaches are generally efficacious, they can be quite time consuming and have the risk of developing inaccuracies when information is forgotten or incorrectly interpreted by analysts. In this study, the potential of a role-playing approach for process elicitation and specification has been examined. This method allows stakeholders to enter a virtual world and role-play actions as they would in reality. As actions are completed, a model is automatically developed, removing the need for stakeholders to learn and understand a modelling grammar. Empirical data obtained in this study suggests that this approach may not only improve both the number of individual process task steps remembered and the correctness of task ordering, but also provide a reduction in the time required for stakeholders to model a process view.

Not only is this is a great achievement by Joel, CaISE is a very competitive conference, but the preliminary evidence is very encouraging.  Virtual worlds do indeed work well as a process elicitation tool, especially, we believe, for naive stakeholders.


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