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Business, Enterprise and Other Architectures

Created Date Monday, 01 April 2013
Filesize 49 Kilobytes

The Skeptical Architect - The Business is at Risk – Architecture to the Rescue

The Skeptical Architect

By: Gil Laware & Frank Kowalkowski

Business architecture focuses on the opportunity and capabilities of the organization. They are the driving forces behind a business’ strategy to do a merger, an acquisition, a divestiture, drive IT alignment, improve business processes or engage in an outsourcing activity. Certainly, various architectures are contextually implicit within the business and that of an anticipated strategy. Thus, the families of architectures (Enterprise IT Architecture, Business Architecture, and Strategic Business Architecture) that we discussed in our last article are part of the anticipated strategy and should be made “explicit”.

In Price Waterhouse Cooper’s (PwC) 16th Annual CEO Global Survey1, the CEO’s who participated in the survey cited the following areas of concern: seek growth in U.S. markets, see consolidation and acquisition key activities, anticipate wide fluctuations in economic conditions due to governmental actions, build more resilient businesses to mitigate various risk scenarios, navigate the uncertain tax and regulatory actions, continue to reduce costs at an operational level, address the talent shortage that is anticipated for future, understand the customer’s needs better for growth, invest in more secure natural and energy resources, utilizing social media ethically to build better customer relationships, and mitigating cyber-security attacks on networks.

To read more, register to this web site to download the article.

Created Date Sunday, 01 July 2012
Filesize 288 Kilobytes

The Skeptical Architect - Architecture—Managing Business Transformation Actively

The Skeptical Architect

By: Gil Laware & Frank Kowalkowski

How many times have we heard management ask what value is there in all this architecture/blueprint stuff? What can you do for us in the next few months? We don’t have time for a two (2) year project? Are there any quick fixes or low hanging fruit that architecture can give me? Can you save me any money on this effort? Management perceives architecture in many different ways. In addition to the variety of perceptions, there is a lack of understanding where the value comes from when working with architectures.

A key value of architecture to business management is in support of business transformation. Let us be clear, we mean that business transformation as taking actions that organize people, process and technology to achieve significant change that aligns with the new or updated business strategies and goals (i.e., adopting a new business model). A practical example to show value is to select a typical management situation and demonstrate value to management not just describe what architecture is all about or just document the structure of the enterprise.

To read more, register to this web site to download the article.

Created Date Sunday, 01 January 2012
Filesize 104 Kilobytes

The Skeptical Architect - Architecture—Different Management Perspectives

The Skeptical Architect

By: Gil Laware & Frank Kowalkowski

Management perceives of architecture in many different ways. As skeptical architects, we believe architecture will not be successful and useful in business as long as the perception continues. Unfortunately, benefits and outcomes of efforts in enterprise-level architecture are difficult to show immediately. Since they are not obvious to senior management, those managers do not perceive its value. Hence, a different approach may be needed to change this perspective. In reality, enterprise architecture is fundamentally about the organization's structure.

The value to management is best described and realized by applying models in enterprise architecture to anticipate the impact of changes in business structure or to assess damage after rapid changes in the business environment occur that require rapid restructuring. Changes in the business environment such as competition, economic downturns, social changes and new technology can alter the enterprise structure, often dramatically. Enterprise architecture can help the enterprise respond to these changes. A set of interconnected architectures developed over time, as we described in our most recent article, is most useful for assessing changes.

To read more, register to this web site to download the article.

Created Date Saturday, 01 October 2011
Filesize 239 Kilobytes

The Skeptical Architect - Dynamic business environments, static IT architectures create constant battle

The Skeptical Architect

By: Gil Laware & Frank Kowalkowski

In the August article, we indicated that enterprises have multiple layers of architectures that form a suite of architectures. Maintaining alignment of the layers has always been a problem that the number of articles, seminars and discussions about IT alignment in business attest.

There are several reasons for the IT alignment problem. Consider the Zachman Framework approach, for example, using successive transformation of views of the information systems architecture. If the technology in row 4 is changed, it impacts the design, or the system logic in row 3 above, (see diagram below). If the business changes, then the design represented by row 3 is impacted by the business changes. This is known as the “row 3 squeeze” so design is impacted from two directions. Change is most likely from the business side as the organization reacts to changes in the business environment.

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Created Date Monday, 01 August 2011
Filesize 192 Kilobytes

The Skeptical Architect - Architecture, A Multiplicity of Perspectives?

The Skeptical Architect

By: Gil Laware & Frank Kowalkowski

We think that there are multiple of architectural perspectives. In our May segment, we made the assertion that business and IT architecture are not the same but that IT architecture is contained in the overall architecture which we called ‘Organization Architecture’. This introduced some definitional distinctions we have seen about 'architecture' today. This time we would like to go a bit further and assert that an organization consists of a collection of architectures that are interrelated. The need to have one all encompassing and current architecture may not be a reachable goal. The examples brought up below give an indication why.

To read more, register to this web site to download the article.