Enterprise Architecture Integration March 20, 2007 EA-7003
Critical Success Factors for EA Effectiveness
There are some common critical success factors that EAdirections has recognized in highly effective EA programs. Not all of these critical success factors are seen in every effective EA program; so each organization must determine which factors are hindering and which are enabling EA effectiveness.
Enterprise architecture effectiveness is highly susceptible to many factors unique to a particular organization. Highly effective EA programs exhibit many of the same critical success factors. Many of these factors were in their favor from the beginning and maintained as such, while ...view middle of the document...
Also, the operating model of a company determines the levels of standardization, data sharing, and application integration that are appropriate, which must be established by senior leadership.
Refers to the extent to which any EA effort is linked to business strategy. The discovery and validation of business strategy requires knowing the thinking processes of the business experts from whom future business requirements are elicited. Collaborative work in groups that include business stakeholders is most effective in the early life-cycle phases of planning/requirements analysis as well as for ongoing architecture process improvement. Such collaborative work patterns can be used effectively to model business strategy
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and derive higher-quality requirements, which include future business requirements. In the collaborative approach to business strategy, enterprise architects and business resources must collaborate to create a business strategy document that is expressed in natural language, based on common sense, and is directly relevant to the business (see Business Participation for more detail). Impact on EA effectiveness: EA that has little to no linkage with the business strategies and capabilities to be enabled by EA will find it difficult to induce and sustain significant investment in the recommendations from the EA program.
Senior Management Involvement
A motivated senior management team is a critical effectiveness factor for EA. If the will exists, ways can be found to make the architecture process more scalable; to overcome or adjust to tight budgets; or to market the EA Program more effectively. However, that will not happen with a reluctant or indifferent management team. EA is a life sentence; it takes time and perseverance to pay off. A cohesive enterprise business vision, communicated effectively, is the foundation for a successful EA effort. IT department leadership must participate in developing the strategy. Senior managers must not only believe in the vision and the role of IT (and EA), but they must also consistently send the appropriate “steering signals” (e.g., reward/advancement policies, compensation) to the enterprise to motivate the appropriate behaviors. Impact on EA effectiveness: The ability to reach an above-average effectiveness level is directly related to senior management involvement; therefore, senior managers must be willing to commit and see it through.
The successful enterprise architect must master the process of navigating cultural, organizational, and political barriers and achieving broad consensus across IT and business organizations alike. Architects and organizations create processes to gain approval, sign-off, and governed deployment on EA deliverables by senior business and IT management. Many EA Programs must develop a certain level of effectiveness, success and credibility within the IT...