On Business Rules Categorization – Part II – Use of business rules

This is the second of a multiple part on the topic of business rules categorization.

So my search for a definition was done (see part I of this series). But as I had done a lot of research and reading, I found that the words “business rules” was being used a lot by many people and in different contexts.

So I started compiling a few of the main places where the words “business rules” were being used. This was hopefully going to help me with my new search for a way to categorize the rules.

For example, I found references to business rules in:

  • Database world: Basically a business rule is a constraint on the database tables. Of course, when you think of it, the cardinality (or multiplicity) of records between tables should be driven by the business. But the best definition I found was in the book “Database design for mere mortals”[1]:

A Business Rule is statement that imposes some form of constraint on elements within a field specification for a particular field or on characteristics of a relationship between a specific pair of tables. A Business Rule is based on the way the organization perceives and uses its data; this perception is derived from the manner in which the organization functions or conducts its business.

  • Business Process Modeling world: As you may have read in one of my previous posts on the convergence of BPM and Business Rules, this is where I started discovering that those relationship was becoming stronger. In short, business rules support business processes. So there are a lot of BPM references that mention business rules. One of the basic ones I will mention here is from “Business Process Management with a Business Rule Approach”[2]:

Business rules should use data to support decisions, and the process should direct that data to the services that consumes it or provide other data.

  • Content management and portal world: The business rules here are concerned with information flow (which pages or fields to display), basic data validation (field length, type, value) that needs to be done earlier rather than later (i.e. Database).

Now the fact that there were many places referring to business rules in a different manner was somewhat complicating things a bit, but it also made sense when I was considering the scope of the definition. 

These findings would prove to be my stepping stone for starting my own categorization.

[1] Hernandez, Michael J. (1996), Database design for Mere Mortals, Addison Wesley Professional
[2] Debevoise, Tom (2007), Business Process Management with a Business Rules Approach, BookSurge Publishing

Series Navigation<< On Business Rules Categorization – Part I – Defining “business rule”On Business Rules Categorization – Part III – Other rule classifications >>

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *