I was researching workflow tools for a proposal and Larry Beck pointed me towards K2.NET from SourceCode Technologies. On Monday they gave me a live demo of the tool and I was suitaly impressed!
Very cool tool. BizTalk's workflow capabilities are more appropriate for system-to-system business processes. K2.NET is more about human-to-system and human-to-human workflow management. K2.NET really complements BizTalk well and the two are tightly integrated. Here are some highlights:
- K2 leverages BizTalk's Business Rules Engine for it's own rules management
- K2 leverages and complements BizTalk's BAM
- K2 workflows can trigger BizTalk orchestrations and vice-versa
- K2 also integrates with Active Directory, InfoPath, SharePoint, Content Management Server, Exchange, Outlook, and MSN Messenger.
- K2 integrates with Visual Studio.NET and ASP.NET and supports both C# and VB.NET.
- K2 generates .NET code and allows you to do things like integrate an InfoPath form and SPS site into a workflow and call orchestrations, all without writing a line of code
- K2 can manage assigning work items to people, exceptions processing, escalating items based on business rules or schedule, managing work queues for groups, load balancing and optimizing work distribution, and service level management.
- K2 offers exxtensive monitoring, tracking, and auditing of workflows and reporting on performance and quality of work.
When you combine K2 with BizTalk's integration prowess, you end up with a very compelling combination for building complex workflow based applications like call-centers and customer service systems.
I'm hoping to use it on my next project, and I'll report back when I have some real-life experience with it. But based on what I;ve seen so far, I highly recommend you take a look at it!