Press Release

OASIS Members Form Web Services Business Process Execution Language (WSBPEL) Technical Committee

Boston, MA, USA; 29 April — Members of the OASIS open standards consortium will advance a specification to formally describe interoperable business processes and business interaction protocols for Web services orchestration. The new OASIS Web Services Business Process Execution Language (WSBPEL) Technical Committee will continue work on the Business Process Execution Language for Web Services (BPEL4WS) specification, an XML-based language that allows users to describe business process activities as Web services and define how they can be connected to accomplish specific tasks.

BEA, IBM, Microsoft, and SAP intend to formally submit BPEL4WS version 1.1 under royalty free terms to the new OASIS Technical Committee at its first meeting on 16 May 2003. The committee is open to submissions of other in-scope contributions and will establish liaison relationships with related Web services efforts within OASIS and other standards organizations including the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C).

Ted Schadler, analyst at Forrester Research, described the move as good news for firms focused on Web services. "The co-authors rightfully view customer adoption as the most important hurdle in making a business process standard meaningful–and that means ubiquitous ISV support. So they’re submitting this spec under a royalty-free license, permitting any ISV to use it without cost," (from "BPEL4WS: The Right Web Services Process Standard," 15 April 2003, Forrester Research, Inc.).

"To solve real-life business problems, companies may need to invoke multiple Web services applications inside their firewalls and across networks to communicate with their customers, partners, and suppliers," said Diane Jordan of IBM, co-chair of the OASIS WSBPEL Technical Committee. "BPEL4WS allows you to sequence and coordinate internal and external Web services to accomplish your business tasks. Thus, the result of one Web service can influence which Web service gets called next, and successful completion of multiple Web services in a process can be coordinated."

John Evdemon of Microsoft, co-chair of the OASIS WSBPEL Technical Committee, added, "The participants in this Technical Committee are committed to building and delivering standards-based interoperable Web services solutions to meet customer requirements. Business processes are potentially very complex and require a long series of time- and data-dependent interactions. However, BPEL4WS allows companies to describe sequential interactions and exception handling in a standard, interoperable way that can be shared across platforms, applications, transports and protocols."

OASIS WSBPEL Technical Committee members include Booz Allen Hamilton, BEA Systems, Commerce One, E2open, EDS, IBM, Microsoft, NEC, Novell, SAP, SeeBeyond, Sybase, Tibco Software, Vignette, Waveset, and others. Participation remains open toall organizations and individuals, and OASIS encourages both vendors of business process automation software as well as end users interested in automating and integrating their internal or external business processes to join this effort. OASIS will host an open mail list for public comment.

"Through OASIS, a large group of organizations are joining together to further the evolution of BPEL4WS from specification to standard–within the context of an open, publicly vetted process. Active participation from the OASIS membership at-large, which includes many business process solution vendors as well as customers, will provide valuable input on usage cases and implementation scenarios that will result in the broadest possible industry adoption," commented Karl Best, vice president of OASIS. "We plan to work closely with organizations such W3C, UN/CEFACT, and others in completing the ‘big picture’ of Web services."

"W3C’s members believe coordination is vital to ensure the delivery of timely and thorough technical solutions that truly meet the needs of customers, especially in the area of Web services," explained Steve Bratt, Chief Operating Officer for W3C. "To that end, W3C’s Web Services Choreography Working Group has invited representatives of the OASIS WSBPEL Technical Committee to attend its second face-to-face meeting in June. We look forward to building on the technical coordination already established between OASIS Technical Committees and W3C Working Groups."

About OASIS (

OASIS (Organization for the Advancement of Structured Information Standards) is a not-for-profit, global consortium that drives the development, convergence, and adoption of e-business standards. Members themselves set the OASIS technical agenda, using a lightweight, open process expressly designed to promote industry consensus and unite disparate efforts. OASIS produces worldwide standards for Web services, security, XML conformance, business transactions, electronic publishing, topic maps and interoperability within and between marketplaces. Founded in 1993, OASIS has more than 2,000 participants representing over 600 organizations and individual members in 100 countries.

Additional information:

OASIS WSBPEL Technical Committee:

Cover Pages Technology Report: Business Process Management and Choreography:

Press contact:

Carol Geyer OASIS Director of Communications +1.941.284.0403

Industry Support for the OASIS WSBPEL Technical Committee:

BEA Systems: "The submission of BPEL4WS to the OASIS standards process reflects the growing importance of high level XML-based business integration," said Edward Cobb, VP of Architecture and Standards, BEA Systems. "Such standards will have broad impact on enterprise computing environments. BEA supports the convergence of the computing industry toward a single model for expression of business processes and looks forward to continued contributions to the OASIS WSBPEL Technical Committee."

EDS: "As more and more companies work to streamline their supply chain and open new distribution channels, process management optimization will be an increasingly critical factor. EDS sees business process orchestration as being near the top of the integration stack in terms of the value that it can provide to clients," said Waqar Sadiq, EIT ESAI enterprise consultant for EDS.

NEC: "NEC believes that having a standardized business process language will benefit all parties concerned in creating dependable business solutions by interlinking Web services," said Yutaka Kasahara, general manager, Internet Solution Platform Development Division, NEC Corporation. "NEC is pleased to be a part of the OASIS WSBPEL Technical Committee and to contribute our expertise in building mission critical enterprise systems."

Novell: "Through its acquisition of SilverStream Software, Novell was the first vendor to provide a commercially available WSFL-based Business Process Manager–a predecessor to BPEL," said Winston Bumpus, Novell’s director of standards. "Largely based on WSFL and XLang, BPEL improves on existing workflow architectures by promoting an intuitive process model and native integration with complementary Web services standards such as SOAP and WSDL. Novell’s support of BPEL underscores the company’s commitment to providing visual tools based on industry standards that increase developer productivity, and therefore we are pleased to see this important work released to OASIS."

SAP: "SAP is excited to co-author BPEL4WS 1.1 and actively support the corresponding standardization efforts at OASIS," said Sinisa Zimek, Director Technology Architecture & Standards at SAP. "More than 19,000 of our customers could benefit from such a business process standard and the interoperability it would enable. SAP will now focus on the delivery of the specification and work to provide the industry with strategic direction to drive adoption of these technologies."

SeeBeyond: "SeeBeyond works with all of the major standards organizations to support the deployment of open solutions, and we will continue to participate in the further development of this important specification to meet our customers’ integration and BPM needs," said Alan Davies, vice president of standards for SeeBeyond. "It is especially beneficial when competing technologies can be merged through open standards, and with SeeBeyond’s experience in integrating enterprise systems for over a decade, we believe WSBPEL will provide greater interoperability between disparate systems to both accelerate and complement the adoption of business process management solutions."

Sybase: "The submission of BPEL4WS version 1.1 to OASIS is the critical first step toward wide-scale adoption of an open Web services orchestration standard," said Peter Hoversten, chief technology officer for Sybase, Inc. "The royalty-free nature of the submission shows that this standard is intended to benefit the technology community as a whole. Sybase is pleased be a co-proposer of the OASIS WSBPEL Technical Committee in actively working towards the specification adoption, integration with other standards, and use as a business process driver within our own products."

Waveset Technologies: "The standardization of a single encompassing workflow and business process definition language is an essential. Waveset’s identity management solutions use an XML-based workflow engine for coordinated process control and workflow, seamlessly integrating business process requests and approvals into an overall identity management infrastructure. As a result, WSBPEL will become a key component of our standards-based architecture," said Darran Rolls, Waveset Technologies.