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Best practices for event-driven architectures

Can you recommend any best/worst practices for event-driven business processes?

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Following are some of the best practices for implementing event-driven business processes:

  • Integrated data sources
  • Alert definition and notification
  • Business process definition
  • Event correlation from multiple sources
  • Automated response to alerts

The first three in the list above—integrated data sources, alert definition/notification, and business process definition are crucial components of a well designed even driven business process. Fourth in the list, event correlation from multiple sources, allows the system to correlate what may appear on the surface to be unrelated system-level events, to produce a relevant business-level event. The fifth capability in the list above requires that users be able to define automated exception-handling procedures. The automated exception can be as simple as logging the error or as complex as invoking an automated process on an internal or external system. With this technique, the user only has to intervene for truly exceptional conditions. It should also enable the user to define various visual metaphors so that the events are displayed in the manner that's most meaningful to the user. A mash up of event notifications with charts, maps (2D or 3D) using Enterprise 2.0 technologies will be very effective in this case. Representing events as tabular data obscures what is really happening and undermines the usefulness of event driven business process implementations.

This was first published in July 2008

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