Three anecdotes to consider when making the case for enterprise architecture.
A number of claims have been made regarding the benefits that an organization can realize by adopting the discipline of Enterprise Architecture; streamlining IT systems, reducing fault fixing, reducing IT maintenance costs, improving operational agility…the list goes on. There is even the recent initiative of the Enterprise Architecture Benefits Framework, from the University of the Netherlands, which tries to streamline the literature on the subject into a formal framework.
But this is often not enough.
When trying to evangelize the benefits of Enterprise Architecture, arguing that “we could accomplish this”, or “we could achieve that”, while accurate, will often fall on deaf ears. Senior managers hear many promises, and can often be sceptical. Enterprise architecture modeling sometimes has the reputation of being a theoretical exercise that delivers little in return for the resources it consumes.
An alternative approach, which the consultancy team at Orbus has found to be very effective in presenting the benefits of any solution, is one of anecdotes. “We have a customer who uses this module in this way”, or “There’s a customer who uses this feature and gets this payoff”. In this paper we present three real-life anecdotes that can be used to show how companies that are not given the necessary support to develop and maintain a model of their Enterprise Architecture find it difficult to adapt.