23 November, 2006

Does an IT ERP make sense?

Despite the fact that some software vendors companies such as ITM Software are considered to deliver such a solution, I would rather qualify this product as a Project and Portfolio Management solution such as Primavera, Artemis, Mercury and others.

Many companies have a wide range of non integrated solutions covering several aspects of IT Governance such as:

-Project Management
-Portfolio Management
-Time Management
-Service Management
-Enterprise Architecture
-System Management
-Security Management
-Asset Management

For each of these components some of them have associated processes but no real touch points between them and the visibility is quite difficult to get in terms of IT Service quality. Some companies passed certifications such as ISO 9000, ISO 27001, went through COBIT, and are ITIL based etc... But from my various observations, they do not have a consolidated or integrated view of their IT Services which would contribute to the improvement of Business IT Alignment.

Very often, top management including the CIO ask for IT to deliver Dashboards where we can have in real time indicators (KPIs) on the department performance and then be able to benchmark against competition.

Among existing solutions we have, IT Governance suites such as Mercury ITG or CA Clarity, Service Management platforms such as Peregrine Service Desk, Remedy, CA, HP, Asset management solutions, and finally Time Management product. In the system management landscape, Tivoli, CA Unicenter, and lots of various monitor solutions to manage networks. Fiinally, Enterprise Architecure is often covered by companies such as Telelogic (Popkin), Casewise, Metis solutions etc…

My experience would be to claim that first we need to re-engineer the process, have integrated flows between domains in order ro be able deliver these dashboards, finally avoid duplicated activities within an IT Department.

As no vendors today is able to deliver such an “IT ERP” (but probably HP, IBM and CA will be able to deliver this but nor before a couple of years…), an alternative would be to consider services around these platforms and then from a portal, orchestrate those services, provide results in various dashboards. Obviously if we had an integrated platform, that would be easier.

For the time being, mash-up applications are probably the only way to produce an IT ERP.

09 November, 2006

Examining innovative Enterprise Architecture Methodologies, Getting SOA Experience and Enhancing Information System Agility to meet Organizat. Needs


Enterprise Architecture

Examining innovative Enterprise Architecture Methodologies, Getting SOA Experience and Enhancing Information System Agility to meet Organizational Needs

Event Date: 27-28 November 2006
Location: Dorint Sofitel Amsterdam Airport, Netherlands

09.55 Case Study

Presentation of Processes and Tools: Enterprise Architecture, Service Management and IT Governance Frameworks
• XXXXX's vision of the components: IT Governance frameworks
(e.g.ITIL, CMMi, TOGAF, Cobit, ISO)
• The standards for Research and Innovation, Enterprise Architecture,
Service Management and their relationships
• Defining the key governance processes and gaps
• Selecting the tools to support the frameworks
• Integrating Enterprise Architecture as a key governance enabler
• Making it all work together

Serge Thorn
Director IT Research & Innovation

07 November, 2006

Why do we not find yet links between Enterprise Architecture and Project Portfolio Management?

A Project Portfolio Management governance process should start when a business user requests or suggests a new capability. The request is automatically routed to a gatekeeper, then to a business analyst or team for an initial business case before being routed to the operations council and the architecture standards committee for review and scoring.

The business team then evaluates the prioritized, ranked projects to determine the proper portfolio mix and whether to accept the recent request.

Project Portfolio Management is:

• A categorization model
• A common language for business and IT to …
• Support Business strategy
• Organize investments
• Evaluate and prioritize IT projects
• Govern and manage applications portfolio
• Decide when and how to make changes (opportunities)
• Understand what can and can not be changed
• Provide real-time visibility into resources, budgets, costs, programs,
projects, and overall IT demand

• A hedge
• “What if” scenarios enable us to analyze
the portfolio and assess the business
contribution of each proposal, project,
or application to the entire portfolio

• Triggers, Thresholds

The Enterprise Architecture steering committee should be part of this governance process and be able to measure the impact at various level of the architecture:

- What is in the impact in terms of Business Procee
- What is the impact at the information level
- What is the impact at the application level
- And finally what is the impact on the technology

Assuming that a company has an Enterprise Architecture in place and an associated governance, the PPM process should be linked to the first one.

None of the existing solutions related to PPM have considered yet this type of integration. On one side we do have PPM tools such as Mercury ITG (now HP), CA Clarity Niku and on the other side EA platforms such as Mega, Casewise, and Telelogic (Doors can be considered as some sort of Demand/Requirement Management solution but can not be considered as a PPM) among others.

I’m still wondering why a company such as HP has not yet been considering an EA tool integrated with their future PPM product, or even IBM which has a PPM product with rationale but no EA solution neither.

There is a high change that the next wave of acquisition after Service Management and SOA platforms will be Enterprise Architecture tools as this would make sense to deliver a full IT ERP.