Authoring Business Rules 101 — Keep it Simple Approach

on May 16, 2024
Authoring Business Rules: Keep it Simple Approach

Authoring Business Rules

Last month at Building Business Capability 2024, Carole-Ann Berlioz, Co-Founder and CPO at Sparkling Logic, presented “Authoring Business Rules 101.” She demonstrated how to effectively transform requirements into business rules that are easy to understand, implement, test, and manage. Is your team ready to embark on your first rules automation project but don’t know how to get started? Whether you use SMARTS™ or another decision management system, Carole-Ann’s Keep it Simple Approach will get your team on track. Listen to the excerpt below.


Keep it Simple Approach

  1. Start with Data. Before you dive into business rules, you should start with data. Data provides the context for your business rules and your overall project. You can also use data to validate whether your business rules are working as expected (in Step 3). For example, in a credit origination project, you would used customer applications to author and test your business rules.
  2. Define Your High-Level Decision Flow. This is a visual outline of your decision that maps out the steps or sub-decisions that must occur to achieve your final decision. A decision flow will help you organize your business rules by steps. For example, the final decision for your credit origination project may include credit approval, credit limit, and APR. To arrive at that decision, your decision flow may contain the following steps: identity verification, eligibility, credit risk scoring, and offer.

Test & Measure

  1. Author Business Rules & Test. Once you have your decision flow, you can start authoring rules for each step. As a best practice, test your rules as you go so that it’ll be easier to identify any errors. For example, in the eligibility step you may have a business rules that rejects applicants that are under 18 years old. To determine whether the rule is written correctly, run it on a sample of your customer applications.
  2. Measure Business Performance. After you have written your business rules, you also want to measure the outcomes of your business performance before you go to production. For example for you credit origination project, metrics that may be important to you include decline rate, average credit limit, average credit score of approved applicants, etc. Are these inline with your expectations? The same data (sample applications) that were used to testing individual business rules can be used to measure business performance.

Authoring Business Rules is an Iterative Process

While the Keep it Simple Approach is laid out as 4 steps, you should expect to move back and forth between the steps. The reality is that authoring business rules is an iterative process. For example, as you’re writing your business rules, you may come up with a better way of organizing them and thus need to go back and change your decision flow. In the next few blog posts, we’ll take a closer look into each of the steps in the Keep it Simple Approach. You can also view our post on how to write business rules.

Continue to our next post, Form Structure — Start with Data.

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Sparkling Logic Inc. is a Silicon Valley-based company dedicated to helping organizations automate and optimize key decisions in daily business operations and customer interactions in a low-code, no-code environment. Our core product, SMARTS™ Data-Powered Decision Manager, is an all-in-one decision management platform designed for business analysts to quickly automate and continuously optimize complex operational decisions. Learn more by requesting a live demo or free trial today.