|Merriam-Webster Unabridged Dictionary (Version 2.5). . Merriam-Webster Inc.
|Semantics of Business Vocabulary and Business Rules (SBVR) (Version 1.0). [January 2008]. Object Management Group.
[MWUD ‘rule’ 1a]: guide for conduct or action; [MWUD ‘rule’ 1f]: one of a set of usually official regulations by which an activity (as a sport) is governed [e.g.,] *the infield fly rule* *the rules of professional basketball* ; [MWUD ‘criteria’ 2]: a standard on which a decision or judgment may be basedA real-world rule always tends to remove some degree of freedom. If it does not, it’s not a rule. 2. Under Business Jurisdiction When we say business rule we mean only rules that the business can opt to change or to discard. A business rule is always under business jurisdiction of your organization. The point with respect to external regulation and law is that your organization has a choice about how to interpret the regulations and laws for deployment into its day-to-day business activity – and even whether to follow them at all. So external regulations are not business rules per se. Business rules include only the rules that a business creates in response to external regulation. SBVR explains:
“The laws of physics may be relevant to a company … ; legislation and regulations may be imposed on it; external standards and best practices may be adopted.
These things are not business rules from the company’s perspective, since it does not have the authority to change them.
The company will decide how to react to laws and regulations, and will create business rules to ensure compliance with them. Similarly, it will create business rules to ensure that standards or best practices are implemented as intended.”3. Business Rule
[SBVR]: a rule that is under business jurisdictionA business rule is a criterion used to:
A customer that has ordered a product must have an assigned agent.
The sales tax for a purchase must be 6.25% if the purchase is made in Texas.
A customer may be considered preferred only if the customer has placed more than $10,000 worth of orders during the most recent calendar year.Business rules represent a form of business communication and must make sense (communicate) to business people. If some statement doesn’t communicate, it’s not a business rule.
Consider this example: If ACT-BL LT 0 then set OD-Flag to ‘yes’. Not a business rule.
Consider another example: An account must be considered overdrawn if the account balance is less than $0. This statement communicates and therefore is a business rule.More observations about business rules:
“Before we started using RuleSpeak to express business rules, business people had no idea what they were signing off on. Introducing RuleSpeak to express business rules was fundamental to getting business people really engaged up-front in truly understanding the business side of requirements.”RuleSpeak is not a formal language or syntax per se, but a set of best practices. Its purpose is to bring greater clarity and consistency in communicating business rules among business people, Business Analysts, and IT, especially behavioral rulesand those many definitional rules that cannot be handled by decision tables. Originally for English, parallel versions for Dutch, Spanish, and German were released in 2009. Versions for other natural languages are under development. RuleSpeak and SBVR recognize that business rules need to be expressed declaratively as complete sentences. If sentences aren’t the best way to communicate many kinds of know-how, we sure do waste a lot of money on all those years of grade-school and university education!