Why is this Useful ?

Many business processes running on IBM BPM do some straight through processing like Shipping, Order Processing. There can be variants of these processes or sub-processes for handling some specific infrequent cases or exceptions.

As businesses require more insightful decisions to interact better and have improved business outcomes with their clients, partners and employees, the greater the amount of contextual data which the process needs to retrieve in order to make that decision.

Some of the contextual information comes within the process transaction, but other context may come from previous historical process transactions, mobile events, system of engagement events, predictive knowledge from analytic scoring and sensors. This allows the contextual decision management solution to have a rich context covering historical, predictive, geo-spatial and business entity state information to aid in providing better decisions

Receive Events and build Context

Extending the Process data model to handle all of this additional context could make it far more complex and slow the process performance down especially if the need to run sub-processes is only a smaller percentage of cases.

One common business solution pattern is to identify and implement the main process flow with all the key tasks to maximize straight through processing. Where required in the process flow emit events containing all relevant information about the transaction from the process(es) to an event driven, context based decision management solution. This stores the richer context along with event information from other sources and uses this to make better decisions by detecting specific patterns to trigger subprocesses, exception processes or applications, notification servers to handle these unique cases.

Act on DSI Events

These cases may only occur once on every 10, 100, 1000 process transactions.

So for shipping, ordering and financial processes like claims implementing some additional context based decision management for opportunity, risk, exception or fraud detect patterns to trigger subprocesses and exception processes can be beneficial.

How can this be achieved ?

IBM Operational Decision Manager has a new capability in IBM ODM Advanced v8.7 called Decision Server Insights (DSI). It provides realtime context based decision management and enables situational patterns to be defined using Eclipse based tools.

odm dsi summary

It can receive events from Processes running on IBM BPM and other sources via JMS, HTTP protocols and align these with the business entities it stores as context like Accounts, Clients, Vehicles.

It can identify patterns from the incoming events and emit new events for applications, notification servers and processes/subprocesses to take action on the patterns identified ie Opportunity, risk, fraud detect.

An example of a Rule based pattern

rule pattern

In this case when a “financial transaction” occurs, the decision pattern looks for 4 things

  • Is the transaction passed by the process “out of country”
  • Is the owner of the credit card likely to travel. The predictive propensity is derived from previous transactions. This information would not be passed from the process. ODM DSI can obtain this from an analytic solution like IBM SPSS
  • There are more than 2 transactions designated as “out of country” in the past 2 days. ODM DSI stores previous transactions from the processes such that the process itself does not need to do this
  • The average amount of transactions exceeds a specific threshold. The process does not need to keep this average amount. The DSI Entity for the account can maintain this running average

This should highlight how extended contextual information not normally help within the process context can be used to make better event based decisions to enhance processes.

What combinations of IBM BPM and IBM ODM – DSI can be used

There are three variants of how IBM BPM and IBM ODM Advanced – DSI can interact

  • Process running on IBM BPM emits events with transaction information to ODM DSI only. Action is taken by other applications
  • IBM BPM does not send any events to ODM DSI, but may receive some events from it to trigger new subprocesses or communicate mid process
  • 1 or more processes running on IBM BPM can emit events with transaction information to ODM DSI AND receive events to trigger new subprocesses and communicate mid process

For more detailed information on how IBM BPM can Emit or Receive events from IBM ODM Advanced – DSI which is targeted at Process Designers who require to know how IBM BPM can emit or Receive events from IBM Advanced – DSI then use this link

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