Support

2 - Modeling Decision Requirements

Last Updated: Apr 22, 2018 03:06AM PDT
We are now going to expand our basic decision diagram from Tutorial One by adding additional knowledge sources and input data using the Bulk Create feature, then creating requirements to these objects from the decisions they impact.

Bulk Create
We can add the additional input data and knowledge resources identified in Tutorial One using the Bulk Create feature. Sources can be compiled in Excel with Object Type, Name and Description in three columns, and saved as a comma separate values (CSV) file.

To activate import and export functions like Print, Word and Bulk Create, you may need to generate an API key. Go to the Admin page and select "API Key" on the left side menu. This will take you to the API Key section of the Admin page. If no API key is displayed then use the button to generate an API Key. If the API Key has already been generated by your lead user, it will appear at the bottom of the page. There is no need to regenerate it.If you do not see an Admin page contact your lead user to generate an API key if you are unable to use these functions.

Save the attached CSV files. On the application bar at the top left of the screen, click on Bulk Create to upload a CSV and upload the files. In the tables below are the Knowledge and Input Data in the two bulk create files. When the Bulk Create completes these objects will exist in the database. Close the Bulk Create tab and return to the open Support Decisions diagram, re-opening it from your Home Page using Search if you closed it.

Input Data:
Name Description
Product Catalog Information about all products and services #tutorial
Issues List Known issues with the products and their resolutions #support #tutorial
Orders Orders placed by customers both shipped and pending #tutorial
Customers Customer data #tutorial
Bills Every bill sent to every customer in the previous 24 months is available #tutorial
Marketing Offers Available marketing offers #marketing #tutorial

Knowledge Sources:
Name Description
Support Policies Different products have different policies regarding customer #support #tutorial
Product know-how Internal expertise on the products and how they work #tutorial
Customer Loyalty An assessment of the likely loyalty of a customer #tutorial
Customer Propensity to Accept An assessment of the likelihood that a customer will accept a particular offer #tutorial
Service Expertise The know-how of the #support team on what works with customers and what does not #tutorial
State Return Regulations Limitations and restrictions on the company's returns that are driven by state laws #support #tutorial

TIP: There are several different kinds of know-how represented here. The Return Policy is a policy document that is internal to the company and produced by it. Product know-how and Service Expertise are much “softer” know-how and probably exist only in the heads of experienced employees or perhaps in training manuals. State Return Regulations are just that, regulations, legal guidelines produced by some external body that must be followed. Finally Customer Loyalty and Customer Propensity to accept are analytic insight, the kind of know-how we can extract from our data. All these types are valid types of know-how and should be modeled as Knowledge Sources.

We will now extend our Support Decisions diagram and continue building our decision requirements model. If you don't have the diagram open return to the home page and open it again. The diagram currently has four Decisions, an Input Data and a Knowledge Source on it. Consider the decision “Determine Return Eligibility.” What information do we need to make this decision? We have already said we need access to Shipments data - this is what the existing requirement tells us - but we probably need to know something about the original orders too as we may have special pricing or conditions associated with those orders that affects returns. To model this decision we need to add this input data to our diagram.

On the left hand side, type “orders” (without the quotes) into the search box and hit enter. Select the Input Data “Orders” and drag it on to the diagram. This takes an Object in the database and associates it with this diagram. Orders is in the database as it was created by the Bulk Create step above.

TIP: The search is not case sensitive nor does it require a complete match. You can even search for text in the description – try finding the Orders input data by searching for “pending," (without the quotes) a word that appears in its description.

Next we will check the knowledge sources we need for this decision. We already have Return Policy on the diagram. Although this might be enough we know that some states have specific guidance on returns that we cannot override so we need to include these regulations as an authority for the decision. We should search for “Regulations” and then add the State Return Regulations Knowledge Source (created by the bulk load) to the diagram by dragging and dropping it.

TIP: You can also use the tags here - try finding the State Return Regulations knowledge source by searching for "#support state". This will search for any object containing the word state that is also tagged #support.

Having added these two Objects to the diagram we need to add requirements to associate them with our Determine Return Eligibility Decision. Use the Information Requirements button to create a link from the Orders Input Data to the Decision by clicking the button, mousing down on the Input Data and then dragging to the Decision before releasing the mouse button. Create an Authority Requirement from the State Return Regulations to the Decision similarly. Adding these links shows that the Determine Return Eligibility Decision requires the Input Data and the Knowledge Source. Drag all these shapes – the decision, two Input Data and two knowledge sources to the same part of the diagram.

TIP: There is no particular reason to have Knowledge Sources or Input Data in any relative position – just use whatever seems to make the diagram clear.

Repeat the process of adding Input Data and Knowledge Sources to the diagram using the search. Link the Determine Refund Eligibility decision to the relevant Input Data and Knowledge Sources as shown below. You should end up with something that looks like this:


These are basic Decision Requirements Diagrams that show how our Decisions require Input Data and Knowledge Sources. We will come back to diagrams and create a more detailed one in a later tutorial.

Next we will learn how to add more detail to each object and talk about these properties.

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