We are familiar with rules in our lives. They are in our legal system, our games, our family, and of course business.

According to BABOK, Business rules is a specific, practicable, testable directive that is under the control of the business. It serves as a criterion guiding behavior, shaping judgments, or making decisions

A business rule is not a business policy. A business policy is a directive concerned with broadly controlling, influencing, or regulating the actions of an enterprise and its people. It supports a business goal and is supported by a business rule

Example of requirement:

The system should calculate the delivery charge based on the weight of the product and the delivery address.

Business rules are different from requirements. They are independent of their implementation within the organization. Although they constrain and support the processes found in your solution, they are not a part of that solution.

Example of Business rule:

The delivery charge will be 3 euros per 100 grams of product if the address is inside Switzerland

Sources of business rules may be explicit (like documented business policies, regulations, or contracts) or tacit (like undocumented stakeholder know-how, generally accepted business practices, or norms of the corporate culture).  

Complex business rules are often represented as a decision tree or table, as described in the technique Decision Analysis. 


The customer status is represented by the rows in the table, the potential amount of money the customer spends is represented by the columns. The customer receives a bigger discount per item as he purchases more. The discount depends on the customer’s status. The decision table enforces this business rule behaviour through the intersection of the status (rows) and items purchased (columns).

Why use Business rules analysis?

  • It captures business rules at their root and expresses them clearly.

  • It allows to refine business rules and validate them with your stakeholders.

  • It helps business rules aligning with your goals.

  • When enforced and managed by a single enterprise-wide engine, changes to business rules can be implemented quickly.

  • A centralized repository creates the ability to efficiently reuse business rules across an organization. 

  • Business rules provide structure to govern business behaviours.

  • Clearly defining and managing business rules allows organizations to make changes to policy without altering processes or systems.

Business rules require consistent use of business terms, a glossary of definitions for the underlying business concepts, and an understanding of the structural connections among the concepts. Reusing existing terminology from external industry associations or internal business glossaries is often advised.

Why use the acceptance and evaluation technique?

How to use the technique of acceptance and evaluation

Use Case

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