Requirements engineering for business workflow systems : a scenario-based approach
Workflow implementations require a deep understanding of business and human cooperation. Several approaches have been proposed to address this need for understanding, but largely in a descriptive way. Attempts to use them in software development have had mixed results. The work reported here proposes that these approaches can be used in a generative way, as part of the requirement engineering process, by (a) extending requirements engineering modelling techniques with underlying cooperation properties, (b) integrating these techniques through the use of a derivation modelling approach, and (c) providing pragmatic heuristics and guidelines that support the real-world requirements engineering practitioner to ensure a high probability of success for the business workflow system to be developed. This thesis develops and evaluates a derivation modelling approach that is based on scenario modelling. It supports clear and structured views of cooperation properties, and allows the derivation of articulation protocols from business workflow models in a scenario-driven manner. This enables requirements engineering to define how the expectations of the cooperative situation are to be fulfilled by the system to be built - a statement of requirements for business workflow systems that reflects the richness of these systems, but also acts as a feasible starting point for development. The work is evaluated through a real-world case study of business workflow management. The main contribution of this work is a demonstration that the above problems in modelling requirements for business workflow systems can be addressed by scenario-based derivation modelling approach. The method transforms models through a series of properties involving cooperation, which can be addressed by using what are effectively extensions of current requirements engineering methods.