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Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Blurry Vision of Future of Work (Workflow, eLearning 2.0, Web 2.0, Decision Systems)

I've not been posting recently because I've been attending the HandySoft Bizflow user's conference. This is a workflow tool that allows you to easily specify workflows involving people and systems and provides a reasonably good capability for quickly creating human interfaces. We've done quite a bit of work on top of this application related to performance, scalability, reliability and new user interfaces.

What was interesting was hearing a keynote speech that could have been lifted right out of a presentation at a Training conference. The main theme was:

We need agility and execution to be able to respond to the ever increasing pace of change
What is interesting about this is that there is a natural intersection going on in corporate IT solutions where there is a natural synergy between:
  • Workflow, business rules modeling and execution - to be able to rapidly specify how work is done
  • Human workflow interfaces - to be able to present work to people in order for them to perform
  • Web 2.0, Lightweight components, Composition - easier composition to form applications
  • Decision systems - helping people to have the information available and put them in the context of the decision that they need to make

But because of this agile kind of environment where we will be able to more rapidly change processes, rules, applications, interfaces, decision support, the key barrier will remain our ability to support the understanding of the newly formed processes, what is needed, what will happen next, etc. That's right, the key lynchpin for all of this is:

Embedded Learning

This is already being done in these systems in some forms, but will rapidly grow so that the learning follows the process descriptions. This is what I believe Jay Cross and Tony O'Driscoll talk about with workflow learning, but a particular application of it.

It will be interesting to see how this moves forward.

I would very much invite your comments or pointers to related information.

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