Patterns of Business Rules to Enable Agile Business Processes

, , and . Enterprise Distributed Object Computing Conference, 2007. EDOC 2007. 11th IEEE International (October 2007)


A problem of today's standard business process (BP) automation systems is that they are too rigid to cope with changing business demands, especially for long running BPs. A solution to overcome this problem is to combine BPs with business rules (BR). State of the art BP automation systems are based on Web service (WS) technology and use WS composition languages, for example BPEL, for abstract and executable BPs. On the other hand, most of today's implementations use BRs mostly to make calculations and to adapt simple decisions to business users without full integration into a BP automation system. We will show that BP execution and BR functionality can be integrated properly in a standard service oriented architecture. This finding will be applied in a new approach of configuring BPs through using BRs. The assumption is that if one considers BRs already while modeling a BP, more advanced BP aspects like decisions, data constraints and control flow can be made agile and adaptive during run-time. We present multiple solutions demonstrating how BRs can be used to obtain different aspects ofBP agility. Described as BP Modeling Patterns, our solutions give insight on how agile BPs can be implemented with current BP automation technology. We implemented them using IBM WebSphere integration developer and IBM WebSphere process server.

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