Cognitive Business Operations are processes and decisions that can sense, respond, and learn. These processes and decisions can learn from structured and unstructured data to improve the quality and consistency of decisions, and the aptitude and effectiveness of knowledge workers to deliver exceptional customer experiences. Harnessing formerly undiscoverable insights, you can identify and resolve issues that your organization was previously unaware of—while shortening the path to decision and action. As a result, your business operations, processes, and decisions get smarter the more you use them.

As a starting point this Cognitive Business Operations article can help understand the challenges it addresses and what is the value it can provides leveraging unused dark data which is available to the business, but not previously leveraged.

Cognitive Business Operations can be business processes running on IBM Business Process Manager infused with Cognitive capabilities, or also include decisions running on IBM Operational Decision Manager.

This article will focus more on the subset of CBO solutions which include BPM based processes many of which can also include decisions. There are some decision specific solutions which can be found on this corresponding article

Cognitive Business Operations can improve business in many ways.


Improve Interactions allows solutions to use Cognitive services to understand and learn from interactions and provide scoring around intent. This can allow a more natural interaction to collect information from people via text or audio and pass into the process to action. This is valuable for automated straight through processes as well as processes which have tasks for knowledge workers.

Better Assignment relates to managing large quantities on unstructured content, often in realtime. The CBO solution is provided the content and can classify, understand the sentiment and tone or look for key terms that can be provided to route the interaction to be most appropriate process or system to action. Often the final decision on which process to invoke can be done from an ODM rule based routing decision.

Better Advice relates to in a process context having access to unstructured content which Cognitive services can understand and learn from and provide this information to a knowledge worker. The knowledge worker can use this additional cognitive insight to make better decisions faster. Its also a great way to enhance the ability for new knowledge workers to perform much better than if they did not have this insight.

React Faster relates to detecting situations when some action should be taken. Processes are relevant to this pattern when they are invoked to take action. Many systems which cannot leverage unstructured content will miss many situations. The CBO solution can use the Cognitive Services to understand and provide actionable insight using events or interactions which are of interest and forward onto the ODM based Situational detection solution. By knowing more about what is happening within a business and interactions with its customers there is a greater ability to detect situations to improve customer satisfaction, protect, and encourage additional business opportunities with those clients

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