The Decision Model - Overview The Decision Model (TDM) is one of those disruptive technologies that has significant implications for design, modelling and management of business logic (business rules), operational decision making, business processes, business requirements, regulatory compliance and business agility.
The Business Logic Problem Today's business managers are constantly seeking to improve their business processes to make them responsive to the rapidly changing business environments. However these improvements have met with varying degrees of success because often business logic have been hard-coded within business process models and application making them difficult to change.
Even where the business logic (rules) have been extracted from processes and stored within rules catalogues ,the large number of business rules have made it difficult to understand and maintain the business logic that is vital to achieve and maintain competitive advantages. Often the business logic modelled contains logical contradictions and errors.
The reason for these problems are because unlike other aspects of IT, there was no way (until The Decision Model) to separate out and model business logic independent of technology and based upon the inherent structure of business logic.
The Decision Model is a modelling methodology that enables business logic to be modelled by concentrating on the business decisions that a business wants to manage and then determining the business logic required to derive each decision based on the inherent structure within business logic.
The Business Logic Solution
Figure 1 outlines a top-level view of a Decision Model using the Decision Model Notation. The blue octagon represents a business decision that the business wants to manage and associated with that business decision are a set of Rule Families (the green rectangular shapes) and their inferential interrelationships that represents the business logic required for the business decision.
The business logic structure of a Decision Model implement 15 design principles that are similar to the concepts of the normalisation within the Relational Model coupled with inferential integrity principles that are designed to eliminate logical errors and at the same time enable complex business logic to be modelled and treated as corporate assets.
Figure 2 above expands on the definition of what we mean by the term Rule Family and its representation as a standard decision table that follows certain restrictions as outlined in the diagram.
For further information on The Decision Model download The Decision Model primer from Download Resources or read the seminal book “The Decision Model: A Business Logic Framework Linking Business and Technology by Barbarba von Halle and Larry Goldberg (available on Amazon).