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+++ Obsolete - the Cloud platform supporting this service is no longer available. +++

This is the first blog in series.

My favorite non-fiction book last year was "Switch: How to change things when change is hard"  by Dan Heath. I've seen plenty of those principles put into practice around me which is a great sign.

But I've also seen change fail, because not everyone has the gift for making the right decisions, and fewer still have the gift for seeing through their execution. That's where tools come in. It's no secret that I believe the most effective tool for making decsisions is SAP StreamWork. So much so, that not only do I use it to make decisions myself, but also coerce my superiors into using it, too.  When you are forced to articulate your goal, articulate the choices, collaborate with experts to determine the best result - then you have a winner for those making the decision, and for those consulting to reach the decision, and for those who simply want to know what was decided.

SAP StreamWork does just that by providing a battery of useful widgets in a collaborative environment (the right people,  in the same context - even if geographically distributed or even distributed across company boundries). Pros/cons tables, mindmaps, cost/benefits/agenda makers/keepers, checklists, SWOT, discussions....they're all there.

Now enter a new tool in SAP StreamWork, which not only helps you design the process to reach a decision, but also to design the process to execute on the decision.  That is what Dan's book is all about. The tool is not an alternative to the book - go read! But it supports you designing and making these decision processes  transparent. Not just for you but everyone involved in the activity irrespective of company, location, .... I can't repeat that enough.

The new tool, which was developed under the project name Gravity, is the collaborative process modeling tool in SAP StreamWork - and we'd like to invite you to test-drive this beta release for yourselves.

What it offers is the ability to model process flows graphically and intuitively. And not just you, but the others in the StreamWork activity can work on the same process at the same time without the discontinuity of having to use additional tooling to get this collaboration working. So if you are presenting a suggested process flow to other experts (and experts are typically widely dispersed and difficult to buttonhole down for meetings) and one of the experts suggests a change , there is no awkward "hang on will I try to give you control in this web conference" - they just reshuffle the shapes themselves. Not happy with the changes? Just undo. It's as simple as that. They can  comment, rearrange, add process steps, new paths... there is virtually no limit to what can be done.

And the real beauty is that whenever you are in the Web 2.6 is presence-aware for context (thank you SAP StreamWork) by design or accident - then you don't block each others work, but work even more effectively.

*** We've re-opened submissions for beta accessj. Submissions already made will be automatically included in the next batch. ***

If you would like to try this and you've got the mozilla firefox browser installed (that is temporary prerequisite) then you can request access.  Please press the "feedback" ribbon in SAP StreamWork and then the "contact" button at the bottom of the popup. Now you can add your StreamWork ID (normally e-mail) and in the body of the mail include the word "Gravity" and either "BPMN" or "No-BPMN" depending on whether you are at all, even a little familiar with the BPMN notation format (not at all a prerequisite).  After a couple of days (we process in batch-mode) the new tool will appear in your StreamWork tools catalogue. You'll receive a welcome e-mail with additional useful details, such as how you can give feedback.

*** How to get access to the new SAP StreamWork tool for modeling process flows ***

*** The specified item was not found. ***

The reason I ask about BPMN (Business Process Modeling Notation) is that the tool supports this standard (the Esperanto of business process modeling) but does not require you to be familiar with it. So it's kind of interesting for me know which camp you are in, later, when you give feedback.

Next blog in series