Oh, the Wondrous Things You Can Do…

KK

Katie Knox

04/27/2021

Office workers using decision automation

Four universal business benefits of utilizing a decision platform.

When someone mentions decision automation with a decision platform, what’s the first thing that comes to mind?

Some people mistakenly think of a workflow engine. Others picture the consolidation of logic deployed outside of specific business applications. And then there are those folks who understand the importance of decision automation but feel like it is something better left to the IT department.

Bringing it back to basics…what is decision automation and why should we embrace it?

Each day, businesses make hundreds (if not thousands) of decisions. Every type of decision—from how to answer a prospect inquiry (demo or not to demo) to when to approve a loan (or suggest a more fitting product)—takes place daily in organizations around the globe. Some of these decisions are made organically by employees and executives, while others follow a very specific process (for each X present, then Y is needed).

And the more complex the decision, the more a decision centric approach helps to shift the focus from manual processes, applications, and human-enabled systems to quantifiable, repeatable, and streamlined business outcomes.

In short, the quicker your organization can decide on the right response, and then repeat that response with precision, the better your company can manage risk while increasing gains.

How does a decision platform play into decision automation?

A decision platform automates business decisions independent of applications. In fact, many decision platforms are considered an end-to-end solution for everything related to the decision management lifecycle.

Instead of replicating logic and deploying it across each of your business applications, decision platforms like InRule allow you to define the logic once, and then let all of your applications consume the same decisions.

And we’ve just arrived at our first universal benefit… a single source of truth for your business decisions….
 

Decision platform benefit # 1: A single source of truth, across the organization, independent of application

 
A decision platform can be your “single source of truth.” What does this mean? Think about it like this…

With mission-critical decisions growing increasingly complicated—and pulling information from disparate, disconnected systems—having repeatable logic ensures teams provide consistent outcomes, regardless of channel, organizational role, or application used.

Some decision platforms further emphasize this “single source of truth” benefit by storing business rules and logic in a central location that can be accessed by any authorized user. InRule accomplishes this with its storage component, irCatalog®.

irCatalog provides a central location to manage business rules, keeping everyone working on the latest version of rules, while also allowing for the sharing of common rules across teams, processes and applications, helping to ensure the integrity of your decisions.

A single source of truth, got it. What’s another benefit of decision automation with a decision platform?
 

Benefit # 2: Putting the power back into the subject matter expert’s hands

 
Bringing power to the masses, that is what a good decision platform can do!

Okay so maybe that’s a little embellished, but the reality is that a decision platform separates business logic from code, allowing business users and subject matter experts to manage the logic they deeply understand. This helps organizations keep with the speed of business and comply with evolving regulations, while freeing up IT teams to focus on more technical initiatives.

And because subject matter experts can update the decision logic quickly within a single location (instead of updating it multiple times in multiple applications) the opportunity for error decreases while the decision process is optimized.

Some decision platforms even offer an “author anywhere” environment, making it easy to edit and update logic. InRule’s own web-based authoring tool is Author StudioTM.

Built for creating greater operational efficiency, Author Studio delivers less infrastructure headaches by allowing business users to polish, add, and update logic from anywhere with ease—and without the need for code changes.

Easy updates from virtually anywhere without the need for code changes, sounds great! What’s the third benefit?
 

Benefit # 3: Lessening demand on IT

 
Many of today’s businesses have to adapt quickly to changing market sentiment, regulations, and business strategies. This can prove difficult when you need to wait on IT to update or change decision logic. By putting the power back into the user’s hands, quality decision platforms actually support IT, offering solutions which are capable, scalable, and secure. More importantly, by separating logic from code, there’s no delay, or need to spin up projects in order to redeploy the applications that depend on updated business logic.

By empowering both technical and business authors to write and manage decision logic, complexity is reduced, time-to-market is sped up, and IT can focus on more technical initiatives—all while ensuring regulation requirements are met (and auditable).

And by adding a dedicated decision automation technology solution—rather than a “workflow+” type product with rules capabilities—you can streamline deployment and overall operational complexity even further, simplifying life for IT and empowering your subject matter experts.

Anything that supports IT feels like a win. What’s the final benefit of utilizing a decision platform for decision automation?
 

Benefit # 4: Changing and adapting in real time for customer-focused engagement

 
There’s no question that the age of the consumer is upon us. Customers want personalized options in real time and many of them want it on their own terms, in the channel of their own choosing. By delivering personalized, contextually rich experiences businesses can increase customer engagement and satisfaction.

Decision platforms like InRule help add complex calculations and multi-faceted decisioning to customer engagement workflows (like in Salesforce or Microsoft Dynamics 365) without custom configurations… or code.

Everything from improving accuracy and consistency of quotes, to providing personalized offers and discounts becomes possible. And because the power to make business decisions via automation lies firmly in your subject matter expert’s hands, your teams can quickly pivot to capture additional share as business climate dictates.

The evolution of decisions: embracing automation to cultivate change

Automating decisions leads to optimized results, lowered risk, and reduced chances for human error. By centralizing logic for speed and decision consistency, a decision platform like InRule separates rules from code, opening up logic authoring to subject matter experts and non-technical users (instead of just IT).

Constant change, adaptation, and pivoting are no longer exceptions to the rules; they are common, everyday business practices. To excel in these conditions requires businesses to respond and adjust, in real time. By evolving your decision-making process and embracing automation, your organization is able to thrive.

To learn more about decision automation and InRule’s decision platform, check out our white paper Quantifying the Value of InRule.