#BRF Practioners Panel

Miranda Shumaker, Kevin Chase, Kathy Gorman, Mukundan Agaram, Ian Cole, Emily Springer and Mark Myers.

Gladys Lam says that the panellists will introduce themselves, their companies and a couple of do’s and don’ts

Do

  • Hire and train the best BA
  • Adapt the rule methodology
  • Use a rule repository
  • Understand clearly the resource pool available for the tool you are using
  • Talk about decisions with customers, not specifically rules
  • Make sure there is a good mix of business and technical
  • Get executive buy in early on, do evangelism
  • Use external expertise
  • Have a strong support structure in place to support the BAs
  • Keep your rule writing staff together in a CoE
  • Set “Mantras”
  • Define your business language up front
  • Have transparency through the organisation

Don’t

  • Don’t let the business get to involved in the solution
  • Don’t get discouraged, it is a lot of work
  • Start with a pilot but don’t let it get too big
  • Don’t let you techies silo the tool
  • Don’t compromise, due a due diligence
  • Make sure you know which features are available to get your
  • Don’t expect instantaneous success
  • Don’t try to bite of more than you can chew
  • Don’t be afraid to make a mid course correction
  • Don’t be afraid of the word No

GL: What kind of skill sets do BA need to make rule changes, how far you took it, etc.

KC: Look for people that can solve the business problems and that have the logic. “Write those rules as if you own them because you do”.

MA: Good SMEs that can think logically.

MM: (missed the answer)

Audience: BAs belong to business or IT?

MS: BAs should be on the business side but work closely with IT. You should have a Systems Analyst.

KG: BAs are separate from both.

ES: BAs also part of a separate group.

Audience: Stewardship?

ES: Data stewardship with 4 stewards as well as a domain data stewards.

MA: (missed)

IC: Our governance came from compliance, security and these can be drivers to make the call for change.

Audience: Skillset for BAs?

ES: Bus. Architect to model the rule solution. BAs are doing to rule writing. Program office and domains that have BAs trained for rule writing. Skillset: Analytical ability, aptitude to rule writing as mentors for other BAs.

KG: Moving BAs to a Professional BA. Need to change the mindset from being a SME to BAs. Position BAs as expert on the domain.

MM: Soft side of skills. Bridging the gap between IT and the business. Soft skills are key in those people way up there with analysis.

MA: ()

KC: “Get IT out of the process” (Leverage developers on writing code and tools). Mentorships and inspections “Bring everybody up and not tear them down”.

Audience: Business Rules Management, how do you eliminate rules?

MA: Partition your rules into decisions and orchestrating can help.

MM: Rules from the business, you can’t eliminate. But if you had a poor design it might be possible to eliminate rules. Once rules externalized, it is easier to ask “why are we doing that?” and this will help you clean things up.

KC: It’s not changing policy. But refactoring the representation might be an approach to help reduce some of the rules.

Audience: What is the viability of capturing knowledge by business in natural language without involving IT?

ES: “Lobing” over the fence is not an ideal situation. We want BAs to write in natural language and that it will flow to the rule execution side.

MA: presentation yesterday about integrating RuleExpress and ILOG for some level integration. Not perfect but step in the right direction.

MM: The big bang for the buck is on the business side. It is unreasonable to think that all the rules in the system will go in the rule engine. Rules will go in different places. If an error occurs, the system has to show the natural language rule back to the user.

Audience: (missed the exact question)

MS: The technology is not there yet, but hope that there will be this integration between the business pieces and the rule engines. Common language is our small company so IT understands the business language.

Audience: What checkpoint are in place for making sure changes to rules are tracked and OK.

MA: Provided search capabilities and…

KC: If the business makes changes to the rules then it is their responsibility and their accountability. The governance process will help control that. He explained the process they use in their company to help support that (including rule change reports, regressing testing, testing cycle, etc.)

Audience: (missed the question) and most of the answers… sorry.

Audience: Any one using non natural english rules (such as math)?

KC: The rules help support which components of the math calculation you are going to use (which lookup tables for examples) but you are right that some cases are like that.

MS: Some rule are like that, but try to compose them so that it is more closely related to natural language

(missed the last answer)

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