IT Systems and Data Objects


After completing this lesson, you will be able to Know how to model IT systems and data objects.

IT Systems and Data Objects

Artifacts as Extra Notes or Remarks

According to the BPMN specification, it is possible to introduce custom elements that are based on individual modeling conventions, containing further information about the process model, such as IT systems.

Besides individual artifacts, BPMN offers Data Object, a standard element for information and documents that are used or created in the process.

Data Object (BPMN Standard)

Data objects represent all kinds of information, regardless of their physical nature. For example, paper documents, abstract information, or digital data. They are connected with flow objects, such as a task, through (data) associations. The figure shows a data object representing an "employment contract", which is required as an input for doing the first task. Next, we show you different ways to represent IT systems in a process model from a modeling perspective.

IT System Object (SAP Signavio Element)

This custom SAP Signavio element simply indicates the support and usage of an application or system at specific process steps. It is connected with activities via associations and it doesn't matter in which Lane this object is placed. The figure shows an HR system that supports several steps in the process. It is linked to activities with associations.


The IT system and Data object must be used moderately, otherwise the model looks cluttered.

In practice, lanes are often equated with responsibilities, but BPMN does not define lane semantics. These competencies can be general roles and departments as well as IT systems and applications. For example, a CRM system. In this example, an IT system is performing communication activities and handles customer data within its representative lane.

In this example, an interaction and exchange of information between human and system is shown. However, the internal behavior of the system is unknown or not desired.

Key Takeaways - IT Systems and Data Objects

Modeling Exercise - Order Processing (Part 3)


The management of MyStore Inc. is still not completely satisfied with the revised process. We must increase their understanding of the process by focusing on communication with the customer. In addition, the visualization of IT systems and data objects is desirable. Finally, to reduce the complexity of the main process, the payment processing is to be outsourced to a sub-process. Goods are only sent after receipt of payment.

Assignment (Based on the Two Previous Modeling Exercises)

Visualize the information flow between MyStore Inc. and the customer.

The entry of the order data, the invoice creation, and the cancellation of an order take place through an ordering system.

A data object is created for both invoicing and cancellation.

Payment processing is outsourced to a sub-process.

Estimated time effort: Approximately 25 minutes.

If you feel confident with your results, view the sample solution and compare with your own.


There are several solutions for this exercise. Hence, the names of the individual elements and the overall design may differ.

Solutions to the Order Processing Exercise - Part 3

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