How Cooperative Is Your Business Rules Software?
cheryl wilson 270003VHSH firstname.lastname@example.org | | Tags:  operational-decision-mana... brms business-rule-management business-rules decision-management
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Last weekend I watched this recent TED Talk on The Rise of Human-Computer Cooperation and was reminded by the speaker of J.C.R. Licklider’s foresight that technology should “enable man and machine to cooperate in making decisions and controlling complex situations without the inflexible dependence on pre-determined programs.” The end goal: To make humans more capable.
And now comes the kicker insight from this talk (I’m paraphrasing a bit here): The interface between human and computer is more important than the power of the human or the power of the computer in determining overall capability. Watch the video for the basis of this assertion.
So, no brainer, a primary goal for those in B2B software marketing and management should be to design frictionless interfaces between end users and the software in order to enhance the claimed and desired capabilities. If you reduce the friction at the interface, you improve overall performance. It’s less about supercomputing and more about seamless computing.
Hearing this a year ago would’ve been frustrating because the interface of our business rule management software had some friction – extremely powerful, market-leading software with some friction at the interface.
Hearing this now that the user interface has been redesigned to rival Apple iTunes is gratifying. A few blog posts ago I said that our new IBM Operational Decision Management v8 product had been described as "the most consumable Business Rule Management System (BRMS) ever." Perhaps a better description would've been it’s "the most cooperative BRMS ever” because it enables regular business people and the software to “cooperate in making decisions and controlling complex situation without the inflexible dependence on pre-determined programs” because there’s no friction at the interface.
So, whether you’re using ODM v8 to automate critical operational decisions or using it to provide real-time decision guidance to front-line staffers, the mission and reality is to make humans more capable at their jobs, whether those jobs involve processing claims, detecting fraud, approving loans, implementing dynamic pricing and bundling, making product recommendations, executing loyalty programs or controlling borders.
Final thought: If you’re considering the purchase of a business rule or operational decision management solution or an open source alternative, I would ask: how cooperative is this software? Is it capable of making me more capable?