This set of terms are related to the concerns of individuals who must manage, analyze, and control the business rules of an enterprise. A few of the terms relevant to this area are shared terms, and appear in that list instead.

Many of these terms were adopted or derived from the work of the Business Rules Group and the publications of Ron Ross.  This is clearly not a comprehensive list.  These terms represent the intersection of architecture and business rules.

Business Policy

Formally documented management expectations and intentions. Policies are used to direct decisions, and to ensure consistent and appropriate development and implementation of Processes, Standards, Roles, Activities, IT Infrastructure etc.

Business Rules and Facts

Business rules and Facts describe the operations, definitions and constraints that apply to an organization in achieving its goal.  A rule is an expression, in structured natural language, which uses business terms to describe a policy in a clear and testable manner.  As an expression of business policy, rules clearly define the constraints to both human and system behaviour necessary for the business to behave in an intentional and well governed manner.

Business Term

A business term is any term used within an enterprise as part of the vocabulary of terms for the business. Business rule expressions make use of business terms to communicate specific and measurable expectations of behaviour.


A directive is a type of standing policy or business rule that is adopted on the authority of a person or office within an enterprise.  In the case of governmental institutions, a directive may originate in legislation, but it is implemented through the authority of the head of the institution (such as a minister of public lands or a secretary of the interior.).


A collection of business terms that are commonly used by the communities of business practitioners within an enterprise. Many organizations have an informal vocabulary, while a few have made the effort to define terms in a common manner.