Cars Online Part 5 - Order To Invoice

This is the Third entry in this trail that is GlassFish ESB (Open ESB) and presents the final stage of the Cars Online ordering process and discusses the functionality available within the Order to Invoice process. It will take you through the functionality provided and explain how this is implemented to provide a real-time response to a long running process. Now because the intention is to use this in a demonstration scenario the processes are all designed to run in minutes rather than in days.

We will also look at how this application is integrated with the Back In Black BPEL Monitor to provide the user / customer with a Business Skinned Order tracking functionality based on the in-build Open ESB / GlassFish ESB Monitoring tables and functionality.

<script type="text/javascript">$(document).ready(function(){ $("#traildiv").load("../resource/cars-online/CarsOnlineTrail.html"); }); </script>

Overview


The Order To Invoice business Process, bsCreateOrder, provides the final step in the Cars Online process and takes all the Customers data and passes it through a number for Business Action (Sub Processes) to build and deliver the Car. The BPEL Process is trigger via JavaScript and and AJAX Servlet call from the "Place Order" button that resides in the button bar at the base of the Quote Screen.

Quote Screen

Once the Business Process has been initiated it will follow the Steps define below but does not wait until completion before it returns. Thus we can receive a response that the order has been validated and sent but the process will continue to run Asynchronously. Alternatively we could have simply used JMS to provide the Asynchronous processing but this would not have given me the ability to seamlessly integrate with , and hence leverage, the Open ESB / GlassFish ESB Monitoring functionality.

 Create OrderThe steps required to process an Order to completion are:

  1. Generate a Unique Order Id.
  2. Persist the Order to a database.
  3. Reply - This does not terminate the process but simply allows it to continue running Asynchronously.
  4. Validate The Order.
  5. Order Confirmation - Send an Email to the customer.
  6. Set-up Finance.
  7. Build the Car.
  8. Deliver to the Dealer.
  9. Ready for Pickup - Emails the Customer informing them that they can pick up their car.
  10. Invoice - Send out Invoice by Email.

It can be seen from the BPEL process that this top level Business Process does not contain any Technical functionality but rather simply calls a series of Business Services that will execute the appropriate functionality. This provides a number of advantages because the Business Analyst can design this process and the Developer can build the Services. In addition because this will be a long running transaction it will be passivated to the database rather than remaining in memory whilst waiting for the appropriate response. The net result of this is a reduction in the memory requirement of the process.

Process Steps

Persist Order

The persist order Business Service will simple take the order details and write them to an appropriate database. At the moment it will take write a limited set of information because that is all that is needed for the demonstration.

Data

If necessary we could link with the persistence database to retrieve the full details.

Validate Order

The Validate Order process simply checks that all the required fields have been completed and then returns.

Order Confirmation

The Order Confirmation process will take the Order information, that has been validated, and build the Order Confirmation email that will then be send to the Customer and the Accounts email. The generated email will be displayed in HTML and contain a link that will allow the user to link to the Cars Online Order Tracking screen. When this is selected the Customer Order information will be displayed along with a Business Skinned SVG Representation of the Order To Invoice Business Process.

Email
BPEL

Although the current email is simple in its layout this provides enough information for the user and does not burden the email client. We could, if required, enhance this with a similar L&F to the web application.

Finance Order

The Finance Order process takes the Customer order information and arranges the previously agreed finance terms. If this is a Cash payment the it does not do anything because we already have the customers cash.

Build Car

The Build Car process simulates the ordering of components and building of the car. This is currently done using a number of wait processes because we can not actually build the vehicle.

Deliver to Dealer

The Delivery to the Dealer process would activate a human workflow that receives the vehicle and takes it through the various dealer checks and valeting.

Ready For Pick-up

Following the Delivery the Ready For Pick-up process will simple build a new email message that can be sent to the Customer informing them that their car is now ready for them.

Email

Invoice

The Invoice process is the final Business Service to be executed and will raise an invoice in the approriate end systems and then email it the customer.


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