A picture is worth a thousand words, but a few words can greatly enhance a picture. It is common to find textual and diagrammatic components complement each other in enterprise models in general, and business process models in particular. Previous work has considered the question of the relative understandability of diagrammatic versus textual representations of process models for different types of users. However, the effect of combining textual and diagrammatic components on the actual use of process models has to the best of our knowledge not been considered. This paper addresses the question of how the mix of diagrammatic and textual components in business process models affects their sustained use. This question is approached via a case study in a telecommunications company where models with different mixtures of text and diagrams have been collected over time. The study shows that models, in which the ordering relations between tasks are captured in diagrammatic form, while the details of each task are captured in textual form, are more likely to be used on a sustained basis.
Saarsen, Toomas and Dumas, Marlon, (2017). "ON THE EFFECT OF MIXING TEXT AND DIAGRAMS ON BUSINESS PROCESS MODEL USE". In Proceedings of the 25th European Conference on Information Systems (ECIS), Guimarães, Portugal, June 5-10, 2017 (pp. 552-565). ISBN 978-989-20-7655-3 Research Papers.