Services -> BPO
By: Simon Holloway, Practice Leader - Process Management & RFID, Bloor Research
Published: 15th August 2011
Copyright Bloor Research © 2011
During the last month, I have had two briefings from OpenConnect around their Comprehend product which overlaps not only the Automated Business Process Discovery (ABPD) but also business intelligence and also workforce analysis and optimisation. The company describes Comprehend as a process intelligence and workforce analytics solution.
Who are OpenConnect? They have their headquarters on the LBJ Freeway in Dallas, Texas. They were founded in the 1980s and initially concentrated their software development on products to make using the mainframe easier. The company has an impressive technology development record with 9 patents granted and multiple patents pending. They sponsor a research chair at the Katholieke Universiteit, Leuven in Belgium on Business Process Discovery & Intelligence.
Figure 1: OpenConnect product development timeline (Source: OpenConnect)
With Comprehend, OpenConnect have concentrated on the financial services and healthcare insurance sectors where 6 of top 20 US healthcare players are customers as well as a leading global property and casualty provider. As an example, major healthcare insurance players include WellPoint, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Florida, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota and multiple others.
From an alliance perspective, OpenConnect is a supporting member organization to America's Health Insurance Plans (AHIP), the national trade association representing the health insurance industry and with NASCO, the integrated membership and claims processing system for some of the largest Blue Cross and Blue Shield Plans.
OpenConnect has 3 primary technology partners:
So how do OpenConnect go to market? In the US, the company has its own sales personnel. OpenConnect's key markets in Europe, which include Germany, France, the UK, Austria and Switzerland, also have direct sales. Its EMEA headquarters resides in Munich, Germany.
So what does Comprehend do? The product was first released in 2005 at the prestigious DEMO Conference and was specifically aimed at discovering processes in mainframe based systems. Although the mainframe is still a major part of their story, OpenConnect are able to cover other types of systems as well. The product can be broken down into a number of components as shown in Figure 2.
The first component - The Collectors - captures information about an organisation's business processes using passive techniques. They are system-specific solutions to capture keystroke/click level activity from web, desktop or mainframe based systems. Currently the following collectors are available out-of-the-box and the others shown in Figure 2 are in development:
Figure 2: Comprehend Architectural overview (Source: OpenConnect)
Comprehend contains 4 intelligence engines which form the knowledgebase to carry out the analysis of the information gathered and produce the process maps.
OpenConnect have taken their experience of working with their customers using Comprehend to deliver specific services and preconfigured versions of Comprehend to the market. These include:
OpenConnect Comprehend has an impressive set of capabilities that shows the company's pedigree and knowledge of their target market. The diagrams and reports are very comprehensive and easy to understand.
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