Classifying Business Rules: I Go By What the Standards SayIn classifying ‘rules’ I go by the standards … Business Motivation Model (BMM): business policies vs. business rules
- Business rules are always practicable – workers can apply them directly.
- Business policies are not – they must be interpreted first.
- Definitional rules (including decision rules) are about shaping knowledge (and cannot be violated).
- Behavioral rules are about shaping conduct (and can be violated).
- Advices are non-rules; they provide practicable guidance but do not remove any degree of freedom.
- The kinds of rules you see in decision tables are generally definitional. Since they represent only a subset of all definitional rules I call them ‘decision rules’ for convenience.
- Condition-Action or Event-Condition-Action (ECA) rules are not business rules at all. They are representations of business rules (for a class of implementation platforms).
- My smart phone can tell me in spoken English where the nearest gas station is. It’s only a matter of time before machines start ‘reading’ regulations, contracts, agreements, business policies, etc. to help people formulate (through dialog) practicable (and implementable) business rules. Can you imagine the productivity benefits?!
- Decision tables are great. Everybody should use them. But they are a lot harder to design well than you might think.
- The DMN standard can move things along significantly … if it is good, and it isn’t overhyped (which it already has been in certain quarters). I’m looking forward to it impatiently. But standardization (in equal parts a political process and a technical process) do take some time!
Tags: advice, behavioral rules, business policies, condition-action rules, decision rules, decision rules vs. behavioral rules, decision tables, definitional rule, DMN, DMN standard, ECA rules, event-condition-action rules, non-rules, practicable, standards