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Business Process Framework

In Depth

The Business Process Framework (eTOM) is a widely deployed and accepted model and framework for business processes in the Information, Communications, and Entertainment industries. As a key part of TM Forum's Frameworx, the Business Process Framework represents the whole of a Service Provider's enterprise environment in a hierarchy of process elements that capture process detail at various levels.

At the conceptual level, the framework has three major process areas, reflecting major focuses within typical enterprises:
  • Strategy, Infrastructure, and Product, covering planning and lifecycle management
  • Operations, covering the core of operational management
  • Enterprise Management, covering corporate or business support management.

Business Process Framework

The Business Process Framework groups processes as follows:
  • Vertical groupings: Focus on end-to-end activities (e.g., Assurance). Each group links customer, supporting services, resources, and supplier/partners. These vertical groupings represent a ”lifecycle” view moving left to right across the Framework.
  • Horizontal groupings: Focus on functionally related areas (e.g., Customer Relationship Management). These groupings represent a “layered” view of the enterprise’s processes, moving from top to bottom, with the customers and products supported by the underlying services, resources, and interaction with suppliers and partners.
  • Where a vertical process grouping and a horizontal process grouping intersect across the map further process detail can be applied in either that horizontal or vertical context, according to the user’s needs.
The Framework process structure uses hierarchical decomposition, so that enterprise business processes are successively decomposed in levels that expose increasing detail.

The Business Process Framework defines the process structure, with descriptions, linkages between these processes, identification of potential interfaces, inputs and outputs, as well as other key elements.

TM Forum together with the itSMF community have defined the integration of Business Process Framework and ITIL in a way that leverages the best of both. As a result, the Business Process Framework has embedded direct support for ITIL processes by integrating these as Best Practices processes within the Business Process Framework.

Also, the Business Process Framework has been absorbed into a formal ITU-T Recommendation M.3050 and has been published by the ITU-T as an international standard.
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