Displaying items by tag: process model

Thursday, 25 April 2024 09:00

Transaction Modelling with BPMN 2.0

Often, when I am out and about delivering BPMN training to our clients, I am asked if it is possible to model the ability to “undo” certain actions within a process model.

The answer is of course yes, BPMN 2.0 provides us with the necessary tools to show this kind of action via transaction modelling.

As you may or may not know, BPMN 2.0 is broken down into several disciplines, see below:

The tools offered by the notation that allow us to undertake transaction modelling fall firmly into the realm of Analytical Modelling.

This means that for users of Sparx Systems Enterprise Architect, we will find everything we need in the toolboxes for BPMN Collaboration and Process diagrams.

Elements for Transaction Modelling

When we say Transaction in reference to BPMN 2.0, we are in fact talking about a Transaction Sub-Process.

A Transaction Sub-Process refers to the coordinated execution of multiple activities such that they will all complete successfully or, in the event of a cancellation, the activities are rolled back to a state equivalent to none of them completing.

To create a Transaction in Enterprise Architect, you first need to create a Sub-Process and then set the Tagged Value isATransaction in the element properties:


The Cancel Event is an interrupting boundary event that can only be used on the boundary of a Transaction Sub-Process.

This event will be triggered should the Transaction reach a state in which a Cancel End Event has been reached. The event will then Cancel (not just a clever name) all successfully completed activities within the Transaction that have defined compensating activities and undo them so that they are in a state equal to none of them having been completed.


Note for Enterprise Architect Users: despite Enterprise Architect allowing you to set any intermediate event as a Cancel, this event type cannot be used used mid-flow and must be attached to a Transaction Sub-Process.


Transaction Modelling with BPMN 2.0 - Cancel End Event
The Cancel End Event is a type of BPMN 2.0 End Event that is used within a Transaction Sub-Process.

Should this End Event be reached within a Transaction Sub-Process, it will then trigger the Cancel Event attached to the boundary of the Transaction.


Transaction Modelling with BPMN 2.0 - Compensation Event
Transaction Modelling with BPMN 2.0 - Compensating Activity
When undertaking Transaction Modelling, should we wish to undo the Activities contained within the Transaction Sub-Process, then alongside the Cancel event types we will also need to employ Compensation Events and Compensating Activities.

An Activity can only be rolled back if it has a Compensation Event set as an interrupting boundary event. This will then need to be connected to a Compensation Activity (or Sub-Process) via the Association relationship.

To mark an activity for compensation in Enterprise Architect, you will need to access the element properties and set the tagged value isForCompensation to true:
Compensation Tagged Value


Transaction Modelling with BPMN 2.0 - Compensation End Event
The Compensation End Event allows us to model a process where we have an option to defer rollback until later on in the process.

When triggered, this End Event will terminate the process and will itself trigger any Compensation Events within the process, and by association any Compensating Activities, allowing us to rollback after the successful completion of our Transactions.

Approaches to Transaction Modelling


When talking about transaction modelling and the phrase “self-cancelling activities” comes up, it is referring to any activities (including Sub-Processes) within a transaction that can be undone should a Cancel End Event be triggered.

A Transaction can contain a single or multiple self cancelling activities.

In the example below we can see that we have a Transaction Sub-Process (modelled as expanded) that contains multiple activities that can be undone when the Compensation Events are triggered by the Cancel Events.

Each of these compensable activities is then linked to a Service Task that is marked for compensation, and it is this Compensation Activity that roles the others back to a state where none of them have been completed.

Note: Whilst it is good practice for an Activity to have one sequence flow in and one out, the same is not true for Associations as can be seen in the example below.

Transaction Modelling with BPMN 2.0 - Self Cancelling Activities

Deferred Cancellation

Deferred cancellation of activities happens when we model a way for our Transaction Sub-Processes to be undone after they have been successfully completed. We do this by implementing a Compensation End Event somewhere in our possible sequence of events. An example of this is shown in the process below:

Transaction Modelling with BPMN 2.0 - Deferred Cancellation

Note: Whilst the example above has been modelled with the Transactions in expanded fashion this is has been done for illustrative purposes. It is better practice to keep things simple and model the Transactions in collapsed fashion and link to the other diagrams via abstraction.

It is also worth noting that we do not model any link between the Compensation and Cancel End Events and the events that they trigger. I recommend using the same names for each, as per the examples above, to show that there is a logical link between them.

This concludes our look at Transaction Modelling in BPMN 2.0, I hope you found it a useful explanation.

How can Dunstan Thomas help you with BPMN 2.0?

Dunstan Thomas have been Sparx Systems partners for the last 18 years, delivering training and consulting services around Enterprise Architect to organisations spanning multiple markets.

Leverage the knowledge and experience of our expert consultants to supplement your teams with services such as:

Published in Tutorials


Panorama 360 for Insurance and Wealth Management has a new website with new offerings and services. InsuranceFrameworks.com offers the most complete set of reference material, called Panorama 360, to the Insurance and Wealth Management industry, globally. Panorama 360 allows organizations to plan, design, develop and manage organizations, processes and technology.

On the website, we provide an import file to Sparx Systems Enterprise Architect with Enterprise Capability model, Enterprise Business Architecture Framework, information Models, an Organizational Integration map and more than 35 core business processes. Not only do we have an import file for Sparx Systems Enterprise Architect, we have added online courses that explain how Panorama 360 works so you can get the most out of your Sparx Systems Enterprise Architect tool. 

  1. Architecture Frameworks (4.5 hours)
  2. Business Process Models (4.5 hours)

The Panorama 360 Enterprise Business Architecture Framework and Business Process Models courses are also offered live-online or on your premises. 

For more information, go to https://www.insuranceframeworks.com. I can also be contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Join my network on LinkedIn at: https://www.linkedin.com/in/pierre-gagn%C3%A9-fcip-fpaa-077701/.

You can also join the Insurance Frameworks Group on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/groups/7418443/ to get the latest news.

Published in News

We recently published Panorama 360 Insurance and Wealth Management Enterprise Business Architecture Framework as a book (456 pages) which is globally available on Amazon. It covers all functional  (Capabilities) and informational aspects of the industry. This enterprise business model is also available on Sparx Enterprise Architect.

Here is a link to an article that was published by Insurance Innovation Reporter's Anthony R. O'Donnell relative to the value of Panorama 360.


For any questions on the Panorama 360 Enterprise Business Model and the Sparx Enterprise Architect version, contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Published in News
We recently published Panorama 360 Insurance and Wealth Management Enterprise Business Architecture Framework as a book (456 pages) which is globally available on Amazon. It covers all functional  (Capabilities) and informational aspects of the industry. This enterprise business model was also introduced on Sparx EA a couple of years ago.
The new Version 4.0 of Panorama 360 Insurance and Wealth Management Enterprise Business Architecture Framework is now available as a book on all Amazon sites for $95.  If you are interested in viewing the model before purchasing a Sparx Systems Enterprise Architect version, you can go to Amazon. Here is the link to Amazon:
You can buy paperback and soft copy formats. Subsequently, if you are interested in a Sparx Enterprise Architect version, you can contact us directly. We have attached a file showing screen shots of Panorama 360 on Sparx Enterprise Architect to this news.
Panorama 360 will give business and IT projects more speed, at lesser cost and with more quality. Panorama 360 is the definitive reference for managing organizations and planning, designing, developing, and implementing business processes and technology in Insurance and Wealth management.
As an insurance company, a consulting organization, an independent consultant or a technology vendor, Panorama 360 Enterprise Business Architecture Framework is a key resource to create value, reduce costs while increasing quality and speed.
The Panorama 360 Enterprise Business Architecture Framework is successfully used in several situations such as:
·         Strategic planning
·         Organizational planning
·         Business and IT architectures
·         Digital transformation
·         Process Improvement
·         Business requirements
·         Software evaluations
·         Information management
·         Mergers and acquisitions
·         Training new employees
·         Activity Based Costing
·         Risk Management
·         Management of Change
For more information, you can write us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Published in News
Thursday, 18 September 2014 10:50

Panorama 360 Showcased by Trisotech

Panorama 360, a world known Insurance and Wealth management enterprise business architecture framework, capability map and process models will be showcased at the BPM,com in Banking, Finance and Insurance and the BPM Bootcamp, Sept 29-Oct 2 in Chicago. Trisotech will be demonstrating their Discovery Accelerator http://lnkd.in/daShuxj with Panorama 360 which was developed by Insurance Frameworks (www.Insuranceframeworks.com) .

Panorama 360 is currently being used by more than 1,000 insurance and wealth management organizations globally. Insurance Frameworks Inc. has also available in a Sparx Enterprise Architect version which can also be purchased.

Insurance Frameworks is now making its Panorama 360 knowledge suite available to platform vendors, technology developers and consulting companies so they can assist they clients during their projects or distribute the product. Panorama 360 is the most extensive suite of business architecture frameworks, capability map, process models and methodologies for the insurance and wealth management industry.


If you have any questions, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Published in News