Measuring Enterprise Architecture Processes
In most enterprises that applies Enterprise Architecture will there be a need to measure how the enterprise is progressing from adapting the Enterprise Architecture Program and there will be some stakeholders who would like to know what value or benefits they gain by investing (and keep financing) the Enterprise Architecture Program.
Enterprise Architecture Processes
Implementing Enterprise Architecture principles, standards, systems and strategies would need some changes, processes and scoping. In this particular paper the idea of Enterprise Architecture processes deals with the concept that a chief architect sets a set of tasks in motion in order to uncover systems, social networks and business processes. The Enterprise Architecture processes differs from business processes by the architectural processes changes systems, business processes, information systems, IT, technology and social systems. Business processes deals only with optimizing the flow of production and goods.
The Enterprise Architecture Processes deals with implementing the structured approach to Enterprise Architecture and to keep maintaining and maturing it. It is quite right that the Enterprise Architecture program would have to be maintained in order to ensure its functional in the long run.
If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it
– W. Edwards Deming.
The chief architect would have to develop some KPIs in order to measure the processes that are a part of the Enterprise Architecture Program. In order to gain an overview of the processes it becomes a necessity to measure the processes before the initiatives have been initiated in the Enterprise Architecture Program. In the ideal situation the chief architect would have to investigate how the business performed before the Enterprise Architecture Program was initiated. The measurement should be used in order to improve the decision makers abilities to make the right decisions. In order to investigate if the proposed changes that have been implemented with the Enterprise Architecture Program have improved the situation for the enterprise, the chief architect would have to measure the “as-is” situation for the processes and “to-be” would have to be like. After the processes have been implemented the ideas would have to give the decision-makers an idea of or if the enterprise has moved closer to a desired state. For this key performance indicators can be a rather good tool for measuring.
The next section of the paper deals with the concept of key performance indicators.
Key Performance Indicators
In this paper a key performance indicator is defined as a number (simple indicator) indicating how a process or segment of an enterprise works. Key performance indicator is a simple tool that gives the various stakeholders data for interpretation and as such the KPI can’t stand alone it has to be accompanied with in-depth analysis documents.
Key performance indicators (KPIs) are suitable situations when the decision-makers would have to a quick overview of how the enterprise works (processes, segments and systems).
The KPIs would have enable the chief architect and the various other profiles that are a part of the Enterprise Architecture group with the appropriate data from the various systems.
KPIs have a significant factor within the concept of the Enterprise Architecture Program due to the various elements of the enterprise’s architecture works.
The KPI is needed is used as by the decision-makers in order to find out if there are any particular problems in the day to day management. Each of the KPIs can guide the decision-makers and it would be able to misguide the decision-makers. In order to find out if the KPI is adding the right value to the the overview that the decision-makers understand the KPI and how it should be used. Likewise does it become a necessity to deal with the KPI in order to understand if the KPI can be used in order to gain the overview in the in the enterprise. KPIs are by all means simplified and it becomes a necessity for the chief architect and for that matter the enterprise architects investigates if the KPI is too simplified and if the KPI can be implemented in the enterprise at hand.
Validating the KPIs
In order to validate the KPIs the chief architect would have to go into the situation of the various groups in the enterprise e.g. do the various actors understand what is to be measured and how they are measured. It is a necessity to challenge each of the KPIs and their stakeholders in order to find the best possible way to ensure that the KPIs measures contributes with value.
Five Things to do in KPI – EA Development
As promised I will hereby present five things that the chief architect could do in order to develop usable KPIs:
1) Identify what KPIs are relevant for the enterprise from a business point of view. Associate other KPIs when the business KPIs have been identified.
2) Probe the views of the enterprise’s decision-makers and those who would make use of the KPIs. Ensure that the business-stakeholders understands why the KPIs have been chosen and what they represent.
3) Articulate a draft for the KPIs and simulate how they impact the decision-makers and if they give the right kind of indication to the decision-makers. Ensure that you incorporate business-politics in your plan for implementing the KPIs.
4) Refine the KPIs and educate the various stakeholders and decision-makers in how the make use of the KPIs and when not to make use of them.
5) Build in the KPIs for the Enterprise Architecture program and ensure that the KPIs are visible in all the various forms of governance structure that are directly related to the Enterprise Architecture program.