Define classifiers


At the beginning of this training, there was an introduction to Classifiers and Thresholds. Now you have more data to use, put those concepts into practice. Start by defining a classifier. Classifiers are a new type of object for your application. By default, when you create an application in Axway Decision Insight, a space is automatically created for classifiers. 

1. Define a risk classifier

With classifiers, you can define risks levels to evaluate situations when the value of an attribute can indicate an unfavorable situation – either because the value is too high or too low or both.

Let's define the first classifier in your application.

Step Action

 Click the  Configuration    icon > Classifiers.

2 Click the New classifier button.

Give your classifier these characteristics:

  • Name: Duration risk
  • Space: Classifiers

Click the Add instance button to define three instances:

  • On time (select a green icon for the default icon)
  • Slow (select a yellow or amber icon)
  • Overdue (select a red icon)

Mind the order in which you create classifier instances

The order in which you create instances matters!

Always create the most favorable status first (in this case, the Normal instance), then keep adding instances from the most favorable to the least favorable status. Decision Insight assumes that classifier instances are always created in this order and picking a different sequence may result in status evaluations that are not what you intend.

5 Click Save.

2.  Define a value for the time an order spends in a step

About the "stuck" attribute

Now that you've created a classifier, define a threshold that uses your classifier. First, you still need to find the value to evaluate.

A classifier can evaluate any attribute in your application. Some attributes are used in most applications. You will start by working with one of them, the stuck attribute.

The term stuck is a useful handle to describe this attribute. A stuck threshold detects items that are taking longer than normal to complete a step within the overall process workflow. A better term for stuck might be delayed. This attribute detects when an item is delayed during step processing rather than completing on time.

There are two challenges here:

  1. Developing the metric to measure the time each item spends at each step.
  2. Defining the thresholds of what the correct amount of time should be.

Tackle them one at a time.

Measure the time an order spends in a step

In the Search for Orders dashboard, add an attribute for the length of time an order has spent in the current step.

Remember your model diagram?

Axway Decision Insight tracks the age of each instance of each entity. It also tracks the age of a relation.

Tip: To find the length of time that an instance of Order has been in a step, find the attribute that corresponds to the age of the relation between Order and Step. That elapsed time counter will reset to zero every time an order instance is moved to a new step.

Step Action

Open the Search for Orders dashboard and go into Edit mode.

2 Click the pencil icon for the Selected Orders pagelet.
3 Click the Add value button.
4 Click the Select an attribute hyperlink.
5 Add the attribute that corresponds to the age of the relation between Order and Step.
6 On the left menu, in the Label text box, enter Time in step.
7 You might want to look at the Format controls available to you.
8 Click Done, Done, then Save.

That will be the value to evaluate with the threshold that will use your classifier.

3. Define a threshold for Time-in-Step

You have the value and the classifier, all you need now is the threshold.

Thresholds are defined within an entity. You want to create a threshold belongs to an entity related to the threshold. For Time-in-Step, define the threshold so it belongs to the Step entity.

You might think that a good place would be to attach the threshold to the Order entity itself. Follow along and see if you can figure out why that is not the best idea.

Step Action

 Click the  Configuration  icon > Entities.

2 Edit the Step entity, then select Attributes.
3 In the You can also create a dropdown, select Manual threshold/Multipliers.

Give your threshold the following characteristics:

  • Name: Enter a descriptive name.
  • Description: Same.
  • Space: Select the Classifiers space.
  • Threshold type: Select Threshold.
  • Data type: You want to measure the length of time an order spends in a step. Select Duration.
  • Classifier type: Select the one choice that is available.
  • Evaluation type: Select High.

In the instance values area, define thresholds values for step instance. You don't know much about the timing in steps yet, so apply the same settings to all step instances:

  • Set the Overdue threshold to 50 minutes
  • Set the Slow threshold to half that time.
6 Click Done, then Save.

You have now defined a classifier and a threshold. Now it's time to tie them together yo produce a visible evaluation of an indicator. 

Example of threshold evaluations

4. Add a "time-in-step" indicator to the Search for Orders dashboard

Step Action

Open the Search for Orders dashboard and go into Edit mode.

2 Click the pencil icon for the Selected Orders pagelet.
3 Click the Add value button.

Select the Classifier mashlet.

For more information about mashlets, see Mashlet types.

5 Click the Select an attribute hyperlink. A list of available attributes is displayed.

As you can see, the list contains no attribute where you can directly click Select.

To reach the classifier, Derive the Age of Current step, that is the age of the relation to Step.The New attribute screen is displayed.


Give your new attribute these characteristics:

    • Name: Enter a descriptive name, for example Time-in-Step evaluation.
    • Description: Same.
    • Space: Select the Classifiers space.
    • Compute: Every 5 minutes.
    • Function: Classifier from threshold.

In the Inputs area, you're meant to select your Thresholds level attribute. You are currently located at the Order entity while your threshold is defined for the Step entity.

To reach the thresholds attribute, follow Current step, then select your threshold attribute.

9 Click Save. You're back at the Select an attribute page for the classifier mashlet.
10 Select the new attribute you've just created.

Click Done, Done, then Save.

Depending on the settings on the time machine, you should see something like this.

Your threshold is working, but the thresholds you set at 55 minutes and 25 minutes for every step are not producing consistent data.


Move the time machine to earlier in the day at 6.45am. The evaluations look better.

Note: Your display includes a row for Berkshire Assemblage with a current step at New Order. That means it has just been received but has not completed the Order Valid step. When you look at the values for Line Items and Total Amount, you see only dashes (-). Do you remember what that punctuation means?

Understand what's happening at 11.45

Your threshold evaluations are skewed because you are missing events from the middle of the process. Because you do not see events for scheduling, production, shipping and invoicing your time-in-step for the Order Valid step is inaccurate.
To fix the evaluations, and to improve monitoring of the process, you need the other events. That is something that you will do in the next next part of tutorial.

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