Work Product (Artifact): Business Entity
A Business Entity represents a significant and persistent piece of information that is manipulated by business actors and business workers. Business Entities are passive; that is, they do not initiate interactions on their own. A Business Entity might be used in many different Business Use-Case Realizations and usually outlives any single interaction. Business Entities provide the basis for sharing information (document flow) among Business Workers participating in different Business Use-Case Realizations.

Business Entities represent an abstraction of important persistent information within the business. Any piece of information that is a property of something else is probably not a Business Entity in itself.  For example, ContactDetails is a property of Customer and therefore not a Business Entity in itself. Information that is not stored but is created or determined on-demand (when necessary) is also probably not a Business Entity. For example, product inventory is certainly significant information, but this is not persistent information. Anytime somebody needs to know how many instances of a particular bar code are currently on the shelves (or in the warehouse), this information will be calculated and then discarded.

Stakeholders use Business Entities to ensure that the information created and required by the organization is present in the Business Analysis Model. A business designer is responsible for identifying and describing Business Entities, as well as for assessing the impact of organizational changes on the information created and required by the business. Business Entities are also used by systems analysts and designers when describing system use cases and identifying software entities, respectively.

Note that we say that Business Entities are manipulated by Business Workers, and in Business Use Case Realizations we show this through invocations of operations on the Business Entity by Business Workers. This depiction is itself a convenience - in reality the operation invoked on the Business Entity may be through the application of a tool by the Business Worker.

Container Artifact
RolesResponsible: Modified By:
Input ToMandatory: Optional:
  • None
  • None
Output From
Representation OptionsUML Representation: Class, stereotyped as <<business entity>>.

If you are doing domain modeling, meaning that you identify Business Entities only, you can use the stereotype <<domain class>> instead of <<business entity>>.

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