Cordys 4.2: BPM Suite For The Enterprise - InformationWeek

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Cordys 4.2: BPM Suite For The Enterprise

The product has a style all its own for business process management (BPM); its platform is actually many enterprise products working in concert.

Cordys 4.2 is one of the most unique business process management (BPM) servers on the market today. Its entire platform is a hodgepodge of many enterprise products working in concert. At its core, Cordys uses an enterprise service bus (ESB) to run all of its packaged services and manage its entire application platform.

Beyond BPM, Cordys also arrives with integration services and integrated tools to develop composite applications that ride on top of its main services. Cordys ESB facilitates services-oriented-architecture-driven applications, and its enterprise services suite helps customers build applications without having to rely on multiple vendors.

Cordys has a single uniform application stack that is fully integrated. Each enterprise service layer in the Cordys platform uses an open framework that solution providers can extend or integrate with any enterprise product to provide extra functionality. Cordys' security service, for instance, provides the same menu structure for every end-user role and is based on a Web service API. In fact, in the background, every function is driven by a Web service. When a user clicks on a menu, the tree structure output is displayed by evoking a Web service that provides the menu choices. Every message that gets sent internally from one service to another is a Web service call. Every layer in Cordys' application stack relies on SOAP and XML.

To extend legacy systems, Cordys supports various communication protocols and provides connectors such as IBM MQSeries and Java Message Service (JMS).

The Cordys data service layer provides metadata access and browsing capabilities. The Cordys Orchestrator arrives with an XML application server that is used to interface with multiple data sources. Developers can point to data structures or model XML objects and link them to data structures.

Cordys' BPM engine can process high-level modeling with human activity workflows and system components. Developers can add Web services components on workflows. To develop workflows, Cordys has wizard-driven development and design tools, including a versioning tool. Cordys' form-driven approach works with XSDs that drive form controls and other form elements using an XML format. In the XForms Designer, developers can integrate multiple components into single forms by combining Web service applications in its Process Model tool, and develop UIs with multiple languages.

Solution providers can take advantage of the extensive integration work needed to coordinate Web services between BI products and Cordys' BI component. For example, when interoperating with Crystal Reports, developers can use Cordys' Scheduler to execute reports and provide reports to Cordys' Portal. Developers also could embed the Crystal Reports engine into Cordys' UI, or query the Crystal Reports engine for results using a Web service interface into Crystal's API.

Cordys' U.S. partner program was launched in August 2004 and is fairly mature. The program is divided by partner function and uses different

criteria such as revenue-sharing, royalties and lead-sharing to distinguish between partner levels. Cordys provides margins of about 50 percent for license-driven revenue and up to 100 percent for service revenue, depending on sales and post-sales support. The starting price is $35,000 per CPU for the core platform and $75,000 per CPU for all the services.

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