In the last few decades, the percentage of occupations requiring a state license has increased 500%. The growth in professional licensure ensures high standards in service industries, but it puts a heavy burden on state licensing agencies.
As demand rises, states must handle increasing complexity, constant change in requirements, and a public which insists on fast, accurate service. Licensing agencies will lean on their IT departments to respond quickly with automation that executes the latest regulations.
But IT departments often labor under the tyranny of inscrutable legacy systems that resist change and hamper solutions. Many states in this situation have shaken off legacy limitations and improved responsiveness by incorporating Progress Corticon business rules management system (BRMS) into their applications.
Corticon simplifies the process of defining and deploying the licensing requirements and business logic for applications which handle transactions such as license approval, continuing education compliance, renewals, reinstatements, status updates and more. Licensing agencies can offer more self-service and public access, speeding up the process and better supporting professionals in the state.
Progress Corticon handles complex licensing interactions like these with ease:
State licensing agencies and state IT departments use a BRMS to write and maintain the business logic needed to carry out functions such as approving license applications, ensuring continuing education compliance, and identifying out-of-compliance professionals.
In many states, the business rules, such as how many educational credits a licensee needs each year, are hard-coded throughout different applications. Customer-facing services, state employee tools, and back-end calculations may each host their own versions of these rules. So when a new regulation is approved, updating the relevant business logic takes extra time and effort.
With a BRMS, the business rules exist in one place and other applications use the BRMS as a service for logical decisions. When changes are required, modelers quickly find the right rules and make one update in one place.
A BRMS also shortens the time to build new automation because modelers can reuse existing rules and make new logic instantly accessible to all applications.
With business rules distributed across applications, any changes increase the risk of introducing mistakes. Unevenly applied updates could cause systems to behave erratically and could even cause harm to professionals and their clients.
Keeping all the rules contained in a BRMS ensures each application applies the correct logic, whether a licensee is working with self-service or with a service agent. With fewer errors, the cost and time needed to ensure proper regulatory compliance across all systems drops and overall quality at deployment increases.
Corticon’s design and performance ensure the best return on a BRMS investment. It provides enhanced flexibility, ease-of-use, transparency and maintainability. In fact, Corticon’s customers have reduced costs and development time by up to 90%.
One of the most challenging aspects of any technical project is strong communication, and IT and business groups devote much time and effort to making sure the licensing and continuing education requirements are clear. But misunderstandings still intrude.
Corticon Studio allows subject matter experts, who understand licensing requirements best, to enter those rules directly into a user-friendly, no-coding development environment. Agency experts ensure the rules are written correctly while reducing the communication effort and minimizing errors caused by misunderstandings.
Even in today’s agile development world, every project manager knows that a bug that isn’t caught until integration testing or deployment can cost 10 to 30 times more to fix than ones caught in requirements.
Corticon helps catch logical bugs early with a powerful environment for testing rules in development. Testers can use comprehensive test suites and incorporate actual data sources to ensure that deployed rules will operate as expected.
Studio also includes tools that identify logical conflicts and data scenarios the rules don’t address. These tools help uncover problems that might not be obvious from requirements documents and flow charts.
After an application is live and humming, the technical and business experts who built it will often shift to new positions. This presents a risk if new team members responsible for maintaining the code can’t understand it.
Corticon’s graphical development environment promotes best practices with commenting tools and plain-language descriptions of each rule. Rule modelers can easily understand another team member’s work, and with the powerful test suite, they can ensure changes they make don’t damage previous work, even if the original rule designer is not available.
Modern IT systems change regularly as new technology standards and architectural options come along. IT departments need to know that products they purchase today will continue to add value as the technical ecosystem evolves.
Corticon fits into a range of architectures, including those still based on COBOL or mainframe business applications. And when IT is ready to implement a modern service-oriented architecture using REST-based web services or containerized applications on the cloud, Corticon is ready to play.
Most state agencies face internal and external audits regularly. And in some cases, a licensee may appeal decisions, which requires research into how the case was handled at each point. The process often soaks up too much time and budget.
With Corticon’s extensive logging and trace options, auditors quickly capture a record of any rules event or recreate the handling for a specific case. The designers can also develop rule-based customized messages that tell the story of each interaction. These features simplify audits and reviews, reducing the time and money required for these processes.
Across the U.S., 28 states have selected Corticon to handle transactions from health and human services to motor vehicle registration and licensing. Corticon’s usability, unparalleled performance and proven reliability make it the state choice for millions of mission-critical transactions every day.
One agency, the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy, uses Corticon to assess certified public accountants’ continuing education status. Their application serves all 50 states, U.S. territories and international jurisdictions and evaluates compliance for tens of thousands of individual license records every day.
They’ve chosen Corticon because it performs reliably, easily handles the immense complexity of continuing education rules, and allows them to develop, test and deploy regulatory updates in a matter of days. In addition, Corticon scales linearly in an elastic cloud infrastructure in response to the increasing demand for their service.
There’s nothing like firsthand experience to help you determine if Corticon is right for your state. If you’d like to test drive this powerful rules engine and see for yourself, download a trial version or request a demo today.
James Goodfellow is a Senior Product Marketing Manager at Progress and focuses his efforts on the DataDirect suite of solutions. Through his tenure at companies like Progress and SAS, he has spent the bulk of his career launching successful marketing campaigns for data and analytics products. James blogs here and around the web on topics such as data connectivity, analytics, IoT, visualization and machine learning. You can follow him on twitter at @jcgoodfellow.
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