This year the Building Business Capability Conference (BBCCon 2015) had a real decision management focus. Not only were there a large number of sessions on the new Decision Model and Notation (DMN) standard there were many others where a focus on decisions had been central to success. Vendor support for the new notation was evident (including our own DecisionsFirst Modeler) with many others expressing an intent to support in the future. Discussions about decision tables used the new notation as a context and a standardized reference for these well established techniques. Workshops on decision modeling and decision tables were well attended, often by people completely new to the whole space – people who will begin their business rules and decision management journey with decision modeling.
In addition, several sessions discussed the power of adding a focus on decisions and business rules to an existing focus on business processes. Some process sessions particularly emphasized the importance of clearly identifying the decisions that drive risk and that must be reported on for compliance purposes. Many of the architectural sessions talked about the general value of models (including decision models) to business architecture, business strategy and regulatory compliance.
The idea that models can improve requirements and provide structure for projects is increasingly well established, allowing decision modeling to be readily adopted by these organizations. From a business rules perspective, when people discussed the lessons they had learned they often emphasized the need for a more agile and iterative approach – something that can be based on the structure of the decision being automated.
In general decision modeling, decision management and the new DMN standard all had a much higher profile than in years past with several speakers identifying 2016 as the year decision modeling will come of age. Thanks everyone for a great conference, and looking forward to 2016.
If you couldn’t attend, read my live blogging series from the conference.