Elements of Business Rule Management: Rule Designer

December 21, 2012

Effectively using business rule technology requires a fundamental shift of the responsibility for managing business logic from the technology group to the business experts. There are a number of elements to this. Here we explore some of the foundational elements of this transition.

The rule designer is a fundamental part of effectively using business rule technology. The rule designer must allow non programmers to be productive and safely configure business logic. To accomplish this, the following elements are critical:

Flexibility and constraint. The designer needs to allow users to express the business logic but also needs to guide them as to what is allowed and how to construct the logic.

Graphical. All business rules claim to be graphical, but that is not just having text show up on a document. The ability to visualize the rules and edit them in a visual form is important.

Validation. The rule engine needs to tell the rule designers that what they have done is not ideal or allowed.

The Decisions rule designer allows construction in both a ‘structured text’ format and ‘diagram’ format.

  • Text-based
  • Graphical Rule Debugger
  • Rule Table

When constructing a rule, the rule designer is led through selecting what data element they are interested in, what the ‘verb’ is and what the other parameters are in the rule configuration.

  • Step 1: Select Element 
  • Step 2: Select Verb 
  • Step 3: Other Parmeters

Any data supplied in rule configuration can come from:

  • constant – data supplied in designer
  • other data in rule
  • looked up from other sources

When something is incorrect in design, it shows validation issues that need to be corrected (see graphical business rule view above).

Click here to contact us for a demo of this functionality.

Carl Hewitt
Prior to starting Decisions in 2009, Carl began in mid 90′s as an innovator in object oriented programming for business. He started his first technology company in 1998 (oop.com) which developed a graphical configuration technology and rules engine. The company was sold to NetDecisions, a global technology company and private equity fund in 2001. As the CTO over technology ventures at NetDecisions, Carl also organized and created Fluency, a voice recognition technology based on the oop.com platform. In 2003, recognizing the potential of workflow in conjunction with other configuration technologies, Carl formed Transparent Logic. Using a .net based platform, Transparent Logic delivered a fully graphical platform for creating workflows, rules and form building suite. Transparent Logic was sold to Altiris/Symantec in January 2008. At Symantec, Carl was the Senior Director in charge of R&D for the workflow team. During his time at Symantec, he created the next generation Symantec Service Desk, based on the workflow technology.

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