Enabling Operational Excellence
Enabling Operational Excellence
Enabling Operational Excellence
Enabling Operational Excellence


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Blog Enabling Operational Excellence

3 Basic Principles for Business Knowledge Engineering

engineer[1]The world that presents itself to us today is characterized by ever increasing complexity, expanding scale, and accelerating rate of change. A first and fundamental step in coming to grips with that world is simply to realize that operating on the basis of rules is the only viable solution.

Based on that understanding, here are three fundamental principles for a new knowledge paradigm.


Principle 1: Follow the same basic rules through every channel.

Providing consistent customer experience requires applying the same basic business rules through each and every channel. These rules should govern both interactions with customers as well as dissemination of products and services to them.

Some people feel that operating on the basis of rules, and applying basic rules uniformly, produces stiff, inflexible behavior. Not at all! By basing actions on rules, you can see clearly when to bend them, and when to extend them. It’s a basic part of the mindset.

Principle 2: Know what your rules are.

To follow the same basic rules through each channel you must actually know what your rules are. How many companies today actually do with any certainty?! How many have their business rules right at their fingertips?

The key to operational excellence is how well you organize, deploy and re-use operational business knowledge. Business rules, quite simply, are the most fundamental kind of operational business knowledge. What has your company done about business-side rule management?

Principle 3: Give your rules a good life.

Just knowing your rules and keeping them at your fingertips is not enough. You must give your rules a good life – you must keep them evergreen. Business rules must become a living-and-breathing resource of your business.

That’s not the way it is today in most organizations. The business has outsourced its business rules to IT (which in turn has often outsourced them off-shore). The rules get mangled in highly convoluted implementations. There’s no accessibility for easy adjustments, and no traceability for quickly resolving problems. That’s not a winning formula for operational excellence.


Read about the new knowledge paradigm: http://www.brcommunity.com/articles.php?id=b900

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Ronald G. Ross

Ron Ross, Principal and Co-Founder of Business Rules Solutions, LLC, is internationally acknowledged as the “father of business rules.” Recognizing early on the importance of independently managed business rules for business operations and architecture, he has pioneered innovative techniques and standards since the mid-1980s. He wrote the industry’s first book on business rules in 1994.