webMethods, HP Co-author Business Process Integration Spec

Enterprise application integration vendor webMethods Inc. Wednesday unveiled its Global Business Visibility initiative, a two-pronged approach to bringing critical business functions together under one umbrella.

The first component to the Visibility initiative is a specification, Open Management Interface, which essentially allows an enterprise to communicate service-level agreements electronically with its partners and suppliers. Co-authored by Hewlett-Packard Co., the OMI is also backed by the three other leading systems management software developers: BMC Software Inc., Tivoli Systems Inc. and Computer Associates International Inc.

The second part of webMethods initiative is its Global Visibility workbench, which enables non-programmers to design business views. The centerpiece is a module that performs analytics across applications that are integrated through webMethods integration backbone. This enables enterprises to obtain metrics globally, rather than moving from point-to-point among applications for analysis.

The analytics module will be included in Version 5.0 of webMethods core application integration platform, expected in November. That platform, which will also support OMI, will incorporate the analytics dashboard, as well as a human workflow element that enables an IT manager to write in a business process for human interaction.

While webMethods, of Fairfax, Va., will be the first to introduce a product that supports the OMI, software makers HP, BMC, Tivoli and CA pledged to release products--essentially connectors to webMethods platform -- that support the OMI specification.