Sunday, October 12, 2014
Six keys to EA success
I recently read the six hereries for EA (www,eight2late.wordpress.com/2014/10/08/six-heresies-for-enterprise-architecture/). My thoughts follow
Distinguish between planning and design - The "self-referential" problems of EA extend past the frameworks to the practice and practitioners. This is because most of the have a background in engineering rather than planning (or architecture for that matter). By in large engineers create designs for engineers i.e. design practice to an extent is intrinsically self-referential. Plans are created for a broader audience.
Only consumption of a plan leads to value - The reason EA "rarely leads to anything of genuine business value" - is because too attention is paid to how the information can be consumed, acted on, etc - and the failure to realises the artefacts are not where the value lies.
Accretional rather than agile - What is required is an accretional approach. That is to say an approach where knowledge accrets. This is incremental, but has a different ethos to agile as applied in SW engineering i.e. where knowledge is transactional, transitory and related to a specific individual or outcome.
Virtuous feedback cycles - Planning assumptions and decision need constant testing and refinement. EA at present is too much like riding a bike, in a business city, with your eyes closed. You know where you want to get to and think you want know the direction. You close your eyes and take off. What you need to do is constantly assess knew information and adjust. The only way to get knew information is to apply the information you have, and this way have it tested and corrected. (see: www.enterprisesto.blogspot.com/2010/05/virtuous-circles-of-strategy.html)
Problem finding rather than problem solving - is great advice, but it is challenge for many who have a legacy as engineers or designers and secretly yearn to return to the comforting and satisfying realm of design i.e. solving problems.
Understand the social implications - is good advice, because the most of the impediments to EA are organisation and structural. (see www.ea-in-anz.blogspot.com/2008/07/focus-on-ea-is-inversing-proportional.html)