Open-source BPM pioneer Tom Baeyens (jBPM, Activiti) today announced the launch of his new company Effektif, aiming to dramatically lower the cost and effort of human-centric process automation. Unlike jBPM and Activiti, which targeted BPM developers, Effektif looks to empower ordinary end users with a cloud-based BPM tool. Initially Effektif will limit processes to simple flows of human tasks only with no integration. Integration with selected apps such as Salesforce and Google Apps will follow. The tool and sandbox runtime are free; deployed apps are charged some amount per activity instance, not yet announced. Effektif received initial funding from Signavio, the cloud-based BPMN tool provider (and a partner in my BPMessentials training).
This looks to me a bit like the automation piece of IBM’s Blueworks Live – the part you don’t hear that much about – but obviously Effektif has a greater incentive than IBM does to expand its capabilities into the BPM/case mainstream. Effektif allows ad hoc activities, and given his stint at Alfresco, Tom knows everything you need to know about content integration, so I would expect Effektif to wind up in the “case management” column ultimately. But they don’t want to position there right now. To start, 5-minute BPM in the cloud is the differentiation. Effektif plans initial product release this summer.