Occasionally, after delivering a design proposal for the use of Business Rule Management System (BRMS, or ‘rule engine’) in relation to a specific business problem, we’re asked:
“We like the idea of using business rules for this, but is the use of a commercial BRMS really warranted? Our rules are really simple. Couldn’t we make do with a home grown product, perhaps based on a database or spreadsheet?”
This is a fair question and it deserves a considered answer.
In this article I discuss the value proposition of BRMS, the pitfalls of clients attempting to develop their own tools to fulfil this function and how this approach can, in the long term, be more expensive than buying a commercial product.