Business Model vs. System Model – Very, Very Different … Do You Get the Difference?!You can find definitions and discussion of all terms in blue on Business Rule Community: http://www.brcommunity.com/BBSGlossary.pdf ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ business model: a blueprint for a business capability based directly on real-world things and ideas strictly named and represented using words natural to business people
Discussion: Even the words used for the building blocks of business models (e.g., the vocabulary used to develop structured business vocabularies) must be natural for business people – again, real-world. Business people talk about real-world things!
A business model enables business people and Business Analysts to engage in discussion about what needs to be created, managed, operated, changed, and discontinued in the business in business terms. Developing a business solution using a future-form business model does not necessarily imply software development, but if software development does ensue (as it usually does) the business model provides a solid grounding.
Examples of business models include strategies for business solutions (Policy Charters), business process models, structured business vocabulary (fact models), business milestone models, and Q-Charts (for decision analysis). The term business model is also used collectively to designate all the business models for a particular business capability. A business model is always subject both individually and collectively to the business rules specified for it.system model: a model that provides a design for an automatable system that is computationally competent
Discussion: For many years John Zachman, creator of the Zachman Architecture Framework, has explained that a business model is always about real-world things. These real-world things are as the business leads see or define them.
A system model in contrast comprises “… surrogates for the real-world things so that the real-world things can be managed on a scale and at a distance that is not possible in the real world.” Surrogates include data entities in place of real-world things; GUIs and use cases in place of face-to-face, real-world communication; network nodes in place of real-world locations; system events rather than operational business events; and so on.Does the separation between business model and system model blur in eCommerce? No. If business leads see or define ePersons (for example) as real-world, then real-world they are. To ensure you have a winning business solution, the ePersons should be defined and shaped within a business model. Afterwards comes design of a computationally-competent system model so you can conduct actual business with the ePersons. [John Zachman, informal communication, June 2011] ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Excerpted from from Building Business Solutions: Business Analysis with Business Rules, by Ronald G. Ross with Gladys S.W. Lam, An IIBA® Sponsored Handbook, Business Rule Solutions, LLC, October, 2011, 304 pp, http://www.brsolutions.com/bbs