BBC Worldwide (BBCWW), the commercial arm of the BBC, is a fast-growing global media and entertainment company.
In 2011 the recently established Enterprise Architecture (EA) team began to consider options for replacing their current EA tool, as part of a wider initiative to document their architecture and raise the EA maturity of the organization.
In order to meet their objectives, it was essential that the EA team had access to a collaborative modelling tool to document and communicate all aspects of BBCWW’s architecture and support the various projects that were in place to increase the organization’s EA maturity. Previously the team had purchased another market-leading EA tool, however it became clear over time that there were a number of areas in which the tool failed to meet their fundamental needs.
Issues with the EA Team’s Original Tool:
As a result of the above issues, in early 2011 the EA team began evaluating potential solutions to replace their existing EA tool and deliver the level of support they needed to meet their objectives.
In August of 2011 they evaluated Orbus Software’s iServer, an EA repository and collaborative modeling environment developed for MS Visio and Office practitioners. Following a brief evaluation period, in which many of the Gartner Magic Quadrant ‘Leaders’ were considered, BBCWW entered into a month-long “proof of concept” trial, during which iServer met all the success criteria given for a new tool. In November 2011 BBCWW invested in iServer as their tool of choice.
Six months after the implementation of iServer, Mark Brincat, Senior Enterprise Architect at BBCWW, has identified a number of key benefits that iServer has delivered:
A central repository for all EA documentation. iServer’s powerful central repository provided a single central storage point for all of BBCWW’s EA documentation, including Visio diagrams and information held in Office documents (Word, Excel and PowerPoint).
‘Componentization’ of Visio shapes. iServer stores the shapes in Visio diagrams (“detail within the detail”) as individual repository objects for reuse, analysis and reporting.
Ease-of-use and deployment. iServer’s seamless integration with the familiar Visio and Office interface means that it requires a very small learning curve. The EA team were up and running within a day of deployment.
The Open Group Architecture Framework (TOGAF) “Out-of-the-Box” solution. iServer’s comprehensive support for TOGAF comes in the form of a pre-configured repository structure that reflects TOGAF’s Architecture Development Methodology (ADM) and all the necessary stencils and documentation templates needed for the EA team to implement the framework.
BPMN 2 notation support. As part of the iServer solution Orbus provided a BPMN 2.0 Visio stencil and template meaning the EA team could document process models according to the de facto notation standard.
Flexibility. MS Visio’s diverse set of stencils, together with the large number of templates available in the TOGAF 9 solution, meant that iServer allowed the EA team to document all aspects of BBCWW’s enterprise architecture
Investment Level. Due to the fact that Orbus leverages current investment in MS Visio, Office and SQL, they were the only vendor evaluated who was able to offer a solution at a price point within BBCWW’s budget.
"iServer has given us the platform to deliver on our key responsibilities as an EA team and to raise the EA maturity levels of the organization as a whole. Moreover, this has been achieved with a minimum of disruption to the team and our current environment, within the budget that we were afforded. Mark Brincat - Senior Enterprise Architect At Bbcww
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