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Business and IT Alignment is important challenge, as we are facing a dramatic change in the way we rely, depend and interact with ICT that influences our everyday life. Although “digital natives” will soon enter the workforce, there is still a huge gap between the business domain and ICT domain in terms of awareness, common understanding or expertise. This hampers the take-off of technology such as Cloud Computing. This is particularly true for startups, that have to focus on their core business instead of investing in IT infrastructure.

Business processes are commodity when defining business activities in human understandable way in form of “sequences of manual, semi-automatic or automated tasks with the aim to achieve the company’s goal”.

CloudSocket envisions the idea of “Business Process as a Service”, where business processes like invoicing, sales, procurement, employee recruitment are supported by workflows that optimally match the ICT support for the selected process. BPaaS that fulfills the business process needs thanks to smart alignment techniques. CloudSocket covers the discovery, orchestration, deployment and execution of BP services on the cloud. It represents a learning cycle which improves cloud individualization over time. With CloudSocket, the level of integration is lifted from the technical to the business level. Hence, the vision is to “plug business” into the “Cloud”.

The project aims to encompass a "hybrid process" modelling framework that reconciliates semantic inference, rule-based inference, meta-modelling management techniques and knowledge management techniques in order to bring SMEs closer to the Cloud by making it attractive for them to incorporate cloud resources and components for their realization of their goals.

The Cloud Service Brokerage platform offers customers and their end users a service marketplace from which to select and provision BPaaS, SaaS and IaaS services. Behind the scenes, there is a middleware orchestrating the execution of services by also enabling their adaptation at the different possible levels (business, service and infrastructure).

Cloud service solutions are highly individualized and their behaviour may vary in unexpected ways, increasing the complexity of integration or composition, hence an adaptation framework is introduced. The CloudSocket framework covers the entire lifecycle of brokering service products, from provisioning of tenants, users and applications/services, going through management of such entities and enriching these with product specific effects and operations abstracted in a generic way, all the while providing information about monitoring and metering events useful for the evaluation of KPIs and SLOs.

Innovation Items and tools are made accessible in the innovation shop at the project website.

The role of FHNW

Research and Innovation partner. Responsible for the semantic modeler, the development of the business-IT alignment in the cloud and the cloud-readiness assessment.Research and Innovation partner. Responsible for the semantic modeler, the development of the business-IT alignment in the cloud and the cloud-readiness assessment.

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Prof. Dr. Knut Hinkelmann
Prof. Dr. Knut Hinkelmann

Programme Head Master of Science in Business Information Systems, Lecturer Programme Head (a. i.) BSc Business Artificial Intelligence

Telephone +41 62 957 23 01 (direct)