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Programmers use BPEL to define how a business process that involves web services will be executed. BPEL messages are typically used to invoke remote services, orchestrate process execution and manage events and exceptions.
BPEL is often associated with Business Process Management Notation (BPMN), a standard for representing business processes graphically. In many organizations, analysts use BPMN to visualize business processes and developers transform the visualizations to BPEL for execution.
BPEL was standardized by OASIS in 2004 after collaborative efforts to create the language by Microsoft, IBM and other companies.