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Business Process and Workflow

Definition

The Capability of “Business Process and Workflow” is defined as the ability to codify, automate, and standardise business processes and rules, including the orchestration of multiple workflows and management of extended business processes within a digital environment.

Purpose

The Capability of Business Process and Workflow is realised through:

  1. Enterprise Workflow Engines that orchestrate workflows, often spanning multiple systems, to control and audit the beginning-to-end process outcomes, and
  2. Rules Engines that dynamically define and control the application of complex sets of conditions that can be executed remotely by systems to ensure consistent application of rules without duplication.

Objective

The objectives of this Australian Government Architecture content are to:

  • Adopt, where suitable, low-code to no-code solutions that allow the development of complex workflows and rulesets through a human centred interface rather than programmatically.
  • Implement build-once-use-many solutions that allow for consistent application and maintenance of rules and workflows across different systems and channels.
  • Ensure traceability and auditability across complex systems and processes without having to embed these functions in all parts of the solution.
  • Reduce implementation risk through the reuse of proven modular designs within government.
  • Ensure that new Business Process and Workflow solutions draw efficiency from preceding investments, implementations, and learnings.
  • Consolidate and standardise Business Process and Workflow solutions with aligned functions to increase efficiency and reduce the complexity of government service delivery.
  • Establish whole-of-government purchasing arrangements for Business Process and Workflow products and services.

Whole of Government Applicability

(Digital) Business processes and workflows contribute to the seamless delivery of government services across different systems and processes through:

  • Low-code and no-code opportunities for skills development of business subject matter experts into technology fields.
  • Multi-agency shared services arrangements (business process, platform-as-a-service, infrastructure-as-a-service).
  • Reuse of business process design and rules validations.
  • Reuse of commercial engagements, including whole of government arrangements.
  • Replication and redeployment of proven technology platforms, data ontologies and workflows.
  • Mobility of APS employees to support knowledge sharing.
  • Reuse of lessons learned from prior implementations.

Policy Elements

Policy:
POL33
Business Process and Workflow Policy Mandate:
Endorsed
Status:
Core
  • Develop a comprehensive understanding of the business and workflow processes targeted for automation. 

    Before commencing any technology investigation, agencies should analyse and assess the processes themselves, understanding their specific needs and determining suitability and requirements for automation.

  • Check for existing re-useable Business Process and Workflow designs before engaging in new development processes. 

    Business Process and Workflow solutions are a capability commonly repeated in the delivery of services in the public sector. Consideration must be given to minimising risk, improving consistency, accelerating delivery, and lowering total cost of ownership of workflows and ruleset management through leveraging existing standards and designs prior to considering alternative new developments.

  • Build for reuse. 

    Where reuse is not possible, provide evidence of which systems across government have been investigated (specifically across the usage and users, scale, and security classification of the system), and demonstrate how any new investment may be extensible and operationalised for reuse and how any new investment may benefit agencies seeking similar capability moving forward.

  • Lower development and maintenance complexity of government solutions. 

    Low-code/no-code documented process and business rules logic that may be invoked across many channels and systems must be considered for suitability prior to programmatically developing a unified software unit that is self-contained and independent from other applications (monolithic).

  • Understand the existing technology environment. 

    Initiatives utilising Business Process and Workflow solutions must demonstrate engagement and applicability of the solution in the context of the technological environment within which they will operate, informing the technology decision and implementation approach.

Domains

This capability is part of the following domain.
DOM3

Government Service Delivery

Policies

The following policies have requirements that impact this capability.
Mandate: Endorsed
Status: Core

Standards

The following standards support development of digital solutions in this capability.
Business Process and Workflow solutions can consolidate one or more business processes and utilise workflow management or allow for the consistent definition and application of rulesets to facilitate user-centric transactions from beginning to end. They support commonly used functionality needed by…

Designs

The following designs include examples of how digital solutions in this capability can be delivered.
Tranche 1 of the modernisation of the Australian Electoral Commission’s ICT systems and infrastructure.
The Dataplace website has integrated SurveyJS for easy content development of new web forms, in a solution that protects the privacy of form data from third party providers.
Establishment of the ICT infrastructure necessary for a national worker screening and registration scheme from 1 July 2024.
The Parliamentary Document Management System (PDMS) provides a service delivery capability to connect Australian Government agencies and Parliament under the Whole-of-Government (WofG) Parliamentary Workflow Solution (PWS).
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