Similarity of Activities in Process Models: Towards a Metric for Domain-Specific Business Process Modeling Languages
In the course of business process management, processes can be represented by models in order to document, analyze and improve processes. Many analyses of business process models require the calculation of similarity values between activities of different process models. Process models can be created using domain-specific business process modeling languages. These languages provide predefined domain-specific sets of activities and their properties and allow the annotation of property values based on glossaries. Since this information describes activities in detail, it enables a precise calculation of similarities between process model activities. However, the literature does not provide a suitable similarity calculation for two activities in different process models created with the same domain-specific process modeling language. Consequently, relying on design science research the contribution of this paper is to propose such a similarity metric. The metric incorporates annotated property values of activities and considers the properties' different relevance, takes into account the characteristics of quantitative properties and analyzes the contexts of activities. The metric is conceptualized and demonstrated by an example. Future research requires its technical implementation and evaluation.