01 September, 2006

Why is Enterprise Architecture becoming the “next big thing”?

IThese days, everyone is referring to ITIL as being a pillar of IT Governance but without really understanding if improvement has to be done at the IT operational level or somewhere else… Some people also imagine that Service Management is a way to improve what everyone loves to refer to: “IT Business Alignment”.. My belief is that in can contribute in some way, but is not the primary goal as an objective.

For sure Service Management is a component of IT Governance but other components are worth being looking at such as Enterprise Architecture.

An Enterprise Architecture consists of the vision, principles, standards and processes that guide the purchase, design and deployment of technology within an enterprise. An Enterprise Architecture describes the interrelationships between business processes, information, applications and underlying infrastructure for that enterprise, and provides best practices for technology purchase, design and deployment.

Enterprise Architecture structures and processes govern adherence to an organization’s technology strategy and provide a managed environment for the introduction of new technology.

The Key Benefits and Value proposition can be

  • Alignment with the company’s Business Model and Strategy
  • Enable business changes, technologically based business opportunities
  • Make easier the introduction of new technologies
  • Allow standardization
  • Information (or data) consolidation
  • Reduce enterprise/application integration complexity
  • Facilitate outsourcing if required
  • Better assets utilization
  • Better assess the impact of changes
  • Reduced time to market

Coming back to IT Business Alignment, the objectives should be:

  • Better understand the company business model (current and future)
  • Understand the relationship between the business model and the current and future IT architectures
  • Reposition IT such that it is aligned with business strategy, and be able to communicate that alignment to the business community

Build roadmaps showing how IT can create credible solutions that align with the business strategy

For all these reasons. Enterprise Architecture should be considered as a top priority level for IT Departments who wants to be real partners to the business.

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