I’ve worked in many IT Strategy and IT Architecture projects; each time during these projects we and the customer talk about “design the Target Architecture” but every time the result was very different.
Enterprise Architecture show its full potential when you need to dominate IT Complexity, this means that of you need to take decision in a specific application area EA does not provide a real support if you compare it to the effort required to map all information and analyse them. But I think more and more companies scenarios are arising where IT is becoming more pervasive in every company and globalization require to handle bigger business context (big corporation landscape or partnership between companies). In this case I strongly recommend a structured approach to analyse you current landscape and take the right decisions.
Enterprise Architecture can be used for different IT Architecture and Governance purposes, like:
- IT assessment
- Business assessment
- Target IT Architecture Design
- IT sourcing and organization analysis and revision
- Project Portfolio Analysis
- Full Portfolio Analysis
There are some common scenarios when this approach fit very well, like:
- Post-Merger & Acquisition Planning & Deployment
- Analyse and revise you overall sourcing model, but internally and supplier facing
- Scope big programs, like revise you full digital strategy or customer relationship approach
- Define you annual budget or your IT system plan (for 2-3 year)
- Launch IT multi-domain or multi-area projects (like Business Continuity or Disaster Recovery programs)
In each of these scenarios, the perspective you want to emphasize could be different, for example:
- In “Post Merger & Acquisition Planning & Deployment” you want to more deeply analyse your System landscape in order to drive a simplification/integration/rationalization process
- In “Analyse and revise you overall sourcing model” you are probably more interested in spending and organizational aspects
- In “Scope big programs” you are probably more interested in the business driver/objective and system functional/process capabilities aligned with them
- In “Define you annual budget or your IT system plan” you are probably more focused on spending items
- In “IT t multi-domain or multi-area projects” you are probably interested in mapping your application and infrastructure assets.
These scenarios could be an accelerator or a reason why you start to approach you EA in a more structured way, but my suggestion is to use these opportunities to keep this approach always in place and running in order to be ready when new big decision will be needed in a fast way.