The need to cope with ever increasing rates of change in business policies has made agile decision/rule management a vital topic for enterprise architects – particularly where regulators or legal compliance are concerned – we need to involve business SMEs directly in the capture and stewardship of decisions to improve agility and accountability. Regular readers of this blog already know the significant benefits the Decision Model (TDM) offers in this area. But, until now, we’ve been hampered by the absence of cost-effective tools that support TDM and that would encourage mass adoption of the technique.
Our wait appears to be at an end.
The week before last saw the release of another tool to support decision modelling and management: BiZZDesign Decision Modeller. This offering not only boasts cost effective, fully-featured support for The Decision Model framework (including list fact types and messages), but its combination of four other features excites us, as TDM practitioners, rather more than existing TDM tools. In this article we discuss: our experiences of this product, what’s genuinely new about it and how it might change the way enterprises use TDM and existing BRMS/BDMS technologies. (more…)
The world of business rules and business rule management has grown up. Welcome to the world of business decisions—a much more compelling technique with which companies can manage their operational business policies.
Until now business decision analysis and maintenance—the means by which business logic is discovered within current business practices, mined from opaque legacy systems, represented in transparent format and managed as a business asset directly understood by business subject matter experts—has been rather vendor-specific and lacking in rigour and scalability. Many methods are available (e.g., EDM, ABRD and BRS), but all are either lacking in formal structure, subjective and/or poorly supported by tools. Developments of the past few years have changed this.
With the advent of The Decision Model (TDM) and tools (like BiZZDesign, Sapiens DECISION and OpenRules) that support it, an era of new rigour and effectiveness has dawned within enterprise decision management. TDM, a precise method and framework for expressing business decisions, has addressed many of the flaws of business rules and prompted a slow evolution from business rules to business decisions. We examine these flaws, what TDM can do for you and the promise and power of this approach. (more…)
It is the stated intent of business rule management systems (BRMS) to support a partnership between the business and IT: they empower business users to own, maintain and test their enterprise business rules, whereas IT departments have the responsibility of integrating the rule system effectively with the infrastructure of the organization and preserving the integrity of production systems. In effect, IT are providing the business with a sandbox environment to control the decision making of their enterprise with true agility. But does it work this way in practice? (more…)
Occasionally, after delivering a design proposal for the use of Business Rule Management System (BRMS, or ‘rule engine’) in relation to a specific business problem, we’re asked:
“We like the idea of using business rules for this, but is the use of a commercial BRMS really warranted? Our rules are really simple. Couldn’t we make do with a home grown product, perhaps based on a database or spreadsheet?”
This is a fair question and it deserves a considered answer.
In this article I discuss the value proposition of BRMS, the pitfalls of clients attempting to develop their own tools to fulfil this function and how this approach can, in the long term, be more expensive than buying a commercial product. (more…)
When it comes to implementing an accounting system, an organisation has three basic choices: buy an ‘off the shelf’ system, build one themselves ‘from scratch’ or compromise and build one themselves using proven infrastructure from an established vendor. Here we argue, from experience, that the latter approach gives an unbeatable combination of flexibility, cost and low development risk. Furthermore a business rule management system (BRMS) is a very potent implementation vehicle for an accounting system. (more…)