bupaR: Business Process Analysis with R

Organizations are nowadays storing huge amounts of data related to various business processes. Process mining provides different methods and techniques to analyze and improve these processes. This allows companies to gain a competitive advantage. Process mining initiated with the discovery of work-flow models from event data. However, over the past 20 years, the process mining field has evolved  into a broad and diverse research discipline.

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Why should we trust your algorithm?

There is no doubt about the current role of Machine Learning in the fascinating world of Business Intelligence. Predicting whether a customer will be loyal to the company or not, understanding customers’ behavior or anticipating market fluctuations are typical examples on which Machine Learning may be pivotal. Unfortunately, most successful Machine Learning algorithms like Random Forests, Neural Networks or Support Vector Machines do not provide any mechanism to explain how they arrived at a particular conclusion and behave like a “black box”. This means that they are neither transparent  nor interpretable. We could understand transparency as the algorithm’s ability to explain its reasoning mechanism, while interpretability refers to the algorithm’s ability to explain the semantics behind the problem domain.

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From relational database to valuable event logs for process mining – A procedure

The huge potential of process mining applications is -luckily- already discovered in a variety of business settings. In industry, more and more companies are learning about its potential value. In meanwhile, academic researchers continue their quest to the best algorithm, the most meaningful metrics, the most understandable visualisations, etcetera. Whatever ‘best’, ‘meaningful’, and ‘understandable’ may be… These are food for thought and discussion on their own. But I’d like to address a different mini-research-topic-on-its-own: the event log.

An implicit assumption in process mining (both research and applications), is the existence of an event log.

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How to select activities for your process model – Some BPMN guidelines


Should everything that happens within your company be represented as an activity?

The picture above shows a list of possible actions that might be going on in an organization. As a process modeler, would you include all of them as activities in your diagram? Or do you think some are too detailed or rather not detailed enough to be considered an activity? Maybe you even argue that some of them are not relevant enough to figure in a process at all…

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