Business architecture is on its own evolutionary journey and its development is a continuous improvement journey.
Re-imagining the future of business is exciting, but investigating the different paths for unlocking business performance and potential needs to take a systematic approach and use effective tools to orchestrate structural change, and dynamic business ecosystem.
Architecture scalability: In well-established organizations, business architecture is an effective tool for contextual knowledge management, communication facilitation, and business transformation. A scalable business architecture should be able to respond to the times and that can mean a growing or shrinking company accordingly. Business strategic goals, core requirements or constraints, the architecture, all of which have the same nature about collective human decisions. An effective architecture helps the management find out which decisions have the most impact in a particular business domain and addresses the scalability cohesively; clarify the vision, the guidelines, as well as the basis for the organization structure etc, to improve organizational effectiveness and scalability.
Architecture agility: Change is the reality with increasing paces. In the organizations which get stuck in doing agile only, there is no such thing as “enterprise agile.” Agile business architecture emerges over time, incrementally thinking about the future of agile organization. Agile business architecture is about stable ground, but not frozen, static ground. It is a highlight which changes to focus on, which one can be ignored. Effective Agile practices take solid enterprise architecture, framework standards, process, methodology, configuration management etc, build the most effective organization possible for the business long term growth and optimize overall organizational agility.
Architecture manageability: In running a complex business, there is a variety of business management such as strategy management, innovation management, operation management, customer management. The quality of business architecture in business alignment is across managing the enterprise strategy to managing operations. Often the most neglected areas of enterprise architecture are in managing the product innovation and customer experience. Each enterprise will have different imperatives. If an organization is scaling and maturing, process gaps in the business architecture of an enterprise should be closed to run a people-centric innovation organization. If an enterprise needs to deliver new products or create new channels to increase the range of marketing to customers, the quality of the architecture should be based on indicators that measure the effect in these areas.
Architecture traceability: The architecture has to describe the current deployment technology patterns, and that must have a traceability matrix from requirements to process to information to physical implementation. Enterprise architecture is a practical tool to increase visibility and transparency of the legacy environment through understanding every island of operation and every workflow process. To understand whether the architecture is ‘good’ or ‘bad’ or somewhere in between, and a lot of color between white and black of failure and perfection, all you need to do is to define and measure key business metrics covering the business management area such as the operating ratio (complexity, maintenance vs. development, sustainability, etc, or time to market (business partnership, requirements elicitation, testing and operating platform efficiencies, etc.) Keep track of important business activities and improve organizational management discipline.
Architecture optimization: All enterprises are designed to varying degrees of detail and with varying degrees of success, but that does not mean they are architected effectively. Architecture exists and is used to assist in better dealing with complexity. Try to analyze what the impact of complexity is on a business system (a process, system, economy); look for the impact of removing some of the complexity and building a road map for managing complexities in a system manner. Business Architecture should have abilities to improve strategic agility and structural flexibility for the system to not collapse and present a high level of business maturity. It is through such a comprehensive understanding and continuous optimization by leveraging business architecture, business management is able to improve performance and productivity.
The quality of business architecture in alignment is to manage the business across managing the enterprise holistically. Business architecture is on its own evolutionary journey and its development is a continuous improvement journey. Prepare architectural assessment checklist based on the objective of the exercise to improve business architecture quality and effectiveness.