IS YOUR ENTERPRISE ARCHITECTURE A MANAGEMENT TOOL OR A WORK OF ART?
Enterprise Architecture (EA) is a standard function in all companies or organizations that are driven by large IT missions and infrastructures. The intent is to design the architecture with EA tools and then build to that design. However, it is a rarity that the IT implementers live and breathe the EA design before they build IT systems. Sometimes IT systems are built without regard for the EA architecture at all. This situation can lead to an IT “wild west” with duplicated systems and cost overruns. In many organizations, Architectures are developed using EA drawing tools. These drawing tools can exist almost on their own, serving the team of architects, but are often disconnected from other data actually in the enterprise and not informing in a useful way the IT projects, programs and systems they are intended to reflect and oversee.
DATA TRUTH IS THE KEY TO TAMING THE INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY “WILD WEST”
Increasingly, many CIOs are asking for data truth in order to manage enterprise technology. Within EA and IT Portfolio Management, data truth means a number of things all at once. First, near real-time data is necessary to keep pace with IT technology programs underway and the need to constantly monitor and execute compliance activities. Second, the data must be authoritative and come from a system of record that is shared not just by the IT architects but also by the Program Managers and other stakeholders in the enterprise. Finally, EA drawings are still a critical way to communicate the enterprise design, but now these drawings must be data driven. In other words, every drawing in the approved EA must have functional descriptions — it is these descriptions and other created data that drive the EA drawings. The overall effect of a data truth and data driven approach is to create an enterprise-level management tool set that enables every participant in the enterprise management or analysis team to interact with the same information.
THE INQUISIENT TRUTH AND DATA DRIVEN APPROACH TO EA MANAGEMENT
InQuisient, (formerly Enterprise Elements), for years has been assisting Chief Architects and IT Portfolio Managers to design and manage their enterprise technology. Within its Fortune 500 and Federal Government customers, the InQuisient technology is managing billions of dollars’ worth of projects across multiple enterprises. Since its inception in 2004, InQuisient has pioneered the data and truth driven approach to EA management.