3b: of a higher logical type – in nouns formed from names of disciplines and designating new but related disciplines such as can deal critically with the nature, structure, or behavior of the original onesMWUD gives these examples (the verbs are mine):
a process, organizational function, set of techniques, and systematic approach for creating and deploying business policies and business rules into day-to-day business activityOur definition is based on Merriam-Webster Unabridged Dictionary [MWUD] definitionsfor governance 1, 2a, 4a, and 5. Why should any divergent definition be created?
1: the act or process of governing
2a : the office, power, or function of governing
4a: the manner or method of governing : conduct of office
5: a system of governingAnd have a look at the MWUD definition of govern [1a]:
to exercise arbitrarily or by established rules continuous sovereign authority over; especially: to control and direct the making and administration of policy in.Note the high-profile roles of rules and policies in that definition. ‘Governing’ a business involves coordinating how business policies and business rules are created (the making … of) and deployed (managed, distributed and monitored) within day-to-day business operations (administration). Clearly, business governance and business rules are directly linked. Why haven’t more people recognized the direct link between business governance and business rules?! 2. Governance Decision The original decision to create a business policy or business rule is an example of a governance decision. Governance decisions should be part of a special business process, the governance process, which also coordinates deployment and retirement of business rules. To support business governance you need a systematic approach, which is provided by a rulebook and general rulebook system (GRBS). These tools also provide the traceability needed to support compliance. 3. Governance Process We define governance process as follows:
a series of business actions and checkpoints indicating who should be doing what (business roles), and when, with respect to deploying business policy and business rulesThat just follows naturally, doesn’t it? ~~~~~~~~~~~ Excerpted 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, 2011, 304 pp, http://www.brsolutions.com/bbs
know-how: accumulated practical skill or expertness … especially: technical knowledge, ability, skill, or expertness of this sortKnow-how that you can encode and retain is represented by business rules and the structured business vocabularies (concept models) on which the business rules are based. Know-how is a subset, a small one probably, of knowledge. Briefly, knowledge can range from practical to theoretical, from certain to probabilistic, and from frequently applicable to infrequently applicable. At the risk of saying the obvious, you can’t run the day-to-day operations of a business on knowledge that is theoretical, probabilistic, or infrequently applicable. In short, business rules are about know-how management, a strictly limited subset of knowledge management. Like knowledge, know-how can be either tacit (in people’s heads) or explicit. The classic test for when knowledge is tacit is ‘lose the person, lose the knowledge’. Obviously you want to retain know-how. As a senior manager recently put it, “No organization should depend on absent brains.”
know-how retention: expressing know-how explicitly in a form understandable by business people and business analysts, and managing the know-how, such that it is always available for future reference or use (by those capable and authorized)The over-time infrastructure needed to retain know-how is provided by a general rulebook system (GRBS). It’s what rule management should really be all about. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 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, 2011, 304 pp,http://www.brsolutions.com/bbs
1. John Zachman says enterprises (organizations) are the most complicated things ever invented by humans. Now I can think of some things that are pretty darn complicated … say nuclear weapons … but ultimately they reduce to mathematical equations. Businesses don’t. He’s probably right.
2. We’ve been at automating enterprises for how long? Say 50 years? Only one generation. Our generation (well, mine anyway). There might be a few things we haven’t figured out yet?!
3. The power of computers has increased faster than our imagination about how to use them. Add to that the huge inertia faced in changing the current skill base (much less the current legacy portfolios themselves) and it all adds up to … a gigantic logjam.And that’s where we sit today. Management feels pain, but they can’t diagnose the real sources of the pain. IT knows … well … IT. The economics of the current scheme no longer produce real value except at the edges of operations (e.g., analytics, social media, etc.). And the current infrastructure is no longer scalable or sustainable cost-wise. Logjam. But what happens in a logjam? Pressure builds up and eventually it bursts. So let me repeat my prediction made a few posts back … and add that something equivalent will eventually happen for business architecture.
>> In the long run the whole equation will change. The fundamental problem lies with the fact that business rules still have to be programmed. (Even production rules are programming.) Take programmers out of the business of implementing rules, put business analysts and skilled writers in their place (with appropriate tools), and the current economics of rule management (and IT as a whole) can be improved by at least an order of magnitude. At least!Entrepreneurs will eventually see the opportunity. (I just hope some of them are in North America.)
1. The IT capital or project investment (which is easy to articulate on a balance sheet or business case) overshadows the governance or talent need.
2. The expertise or lack thereof of … a user base oversteers the direction rather than an informed senior level assessment and direction.
3. The urgent and important crowds out the long term, and a business rulebook rapidly becomes riddled with exceptions and loses value and credibility.So I don’t see it as much about a binary challenge between business and IT responsibilities, but the IT problem being a common and prominent example of a lack of executive sponsorship and stewardship. It’s almost trite to say the fix has to start with an executive appreciation of the value followed by ownership and commitment to making it work. Find a business problem or opportunity which doesn’t fit that profile! So not a very helpful reply I’m afraid. What are your thoughts Ron? Where do you see the malaise being resolved (if at all)? ~~~~~~~~~~~~~ My reply … Alexander, Well said. Unfortunately I can’t disagree with any of your points. There are a great many vested interests and other sources of inertia lined up against it. So we’ll just have to keep plugging away with the message, showing success stories, and motivating change. I’ve been at it for the best part of 15 years … I have no intention of giving up as long as I’m living and breathing. Now this part might surprise you. In the long run the whole equation will change. The fundamental problem lies with the fact that business rules still have to be programmed. (Even production rules are programming.) Take programmers out of the business of implementing rules, put business analysts and skilled writers in their place (with appropriate tools), and the current economics of rule management (and IT as a whole) can be improved by at least an order of magnitude. There is a sea change coming, tsunami in proportions. Most people will be blindsided by it. It will happen sometime within this decade. Mark my words.
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