Please note : This help page is not for the latest version of Enterprise Architect. The latest help can be found here.

Prev Next

Language Overview

VDML defines the language mechanisms for the consistent and expressive representation and integration of business concepts and viewpoints for business executives, leaders and line managers to develop an appreciation and understanding of the value-oriented facets of an enterprise or its divisions. Using VDML you have the ability to foster consensus and provide what-if scenarios, along with the ability to exchange the resulting models with other users. There is some semantic and syntactic overlap with other business modeling language standards such as Business Process Model and Notation (BPMN) and Archimate. VDML includes concepts of Activities, Roles, Flows and Participants which have analogous elements in the BPMN, but VDML provides a higher level of abstraction of business activity to focus on statistical characteristics of activities, resources, deliverables and value contributions. VDML also overlaps with Archimate (used to model enterprise architecture) with concepts such as business capabilities and extended organizational relationships - to provide an enterprise-level perspective on the operation of the business.

VDML Viewpoints

The language supports multiple viewpoints that express different abstractions or simplifications of the structure and design of an enterprise. These viewpoints influenced the development of the language and show how the language relates to other industry standards.

The creation and exchange of business value is a fundamental driver of analysis using VDML. A value is defined as a measurable benefit delivered to a recipient in association with a business item (deliverable). A Measurement, which can be objective or subjective, represents the extent to which the property is present. The concept of a recipient is critical to understanding the language as this is where the value is realized. A value may represent a feature that is intrinsic to the deliverable such as its composition, its performance, or its weight, or other benefits conveyed by the deliverable to the recipient such as price, a commitment to future purchases, a warranty, an environmental impact of the product or trustworthiness. Each recipient will potentially have different opinions regarding their level of satisfaction with the particular value (different Measurements), but they should all agree on the operational Measurement of the value contribution. A deliverable will typically convey multiple values, and an exchange may involve multiple deliverables.