10 years, 8 months ago

Celebrating the Skeptics: The EA Truth is Out There

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By: Ben Geller, VP Marketing, Troux

describe the imageRemember The X-Files? For an hour each week we got to suspend reality as Mulder and Scully chased answers in a world of the paranormal, complete with UFOs, aliens, and conspiracy theories. We see a lot of Mulders (The Believer) and Scullys (The Skeptic) when touting the value of Enterprise Architecture to the business. To honor International Skeptics Day, I’m going in search of the Truth in Enterprise Architecture.

Unfortunately, EA still carries shall we say a ‘less-than-positive’ stigma with some people, particularly with those who had a bad experience when EA came onto the scene. While the theory of EA has always been sound, many organizations failed on execution, leaving people to doubt or misunderstand the value. It’s not about drawing models or creating a lot of good-looking artifacts.  Today’s Enterprise Architecture is now being positioned by thought leaders in the business and IT to help their organizations better manage the growing complexity and the accelerating pace of change to ensure they deliver the best outcomes – for reducing costs, decreasing risk, and/or improving competitive agility.

The proven EA approach spans a multitude of operational and transformational levels from business-centric cases to IT centric cases. Enterprise architecture EA isn’t about designing pictures on paper (can you say crop circles ?), it’s about designing patterns and structures which the business can use to navigate complexity and achieve alignment to achieve success.

Still skeptical? It’s ok, it is the day for that, after all. But the evidence stacks up to make the case for the EA comeback. See for yourself:

  • FEAPO – Federation of Enterprise Architecture Professional Organizations. FEAPO has brought together organizations from all over the world to provide a forum to standardize, professionalize, and advance the discipline of Enterprise Architecture. A much anticipated perspective paper on the discipline of EA, developed through collaboration and agreement of all the member organizations, is expected to publish in mid-November.

  • Penn State University sees a future in EA. The university’s Center for Enterprise Architecture focuses on directing attention and resources to the critical issue of co-designing the IT infrastructure and business logic. The center puts special focus on the College’s on-going efforts to develop new curricula at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Other universities are following suit to ensure there is an experienced workforce to fill the EA demand.

  • There are waves and quadrants dedicated to Enterprise Architecture tools from the top two independent industry analyst firms and a multitude of analysts from other technology firms that closely follow the space.

  • This week InfoWorld and Forrester Research, in collaboration with Penn State University Center for Enterprise Architecture, presented the Enterprise Architecture Awards to recognize companies whose practice of EA has delivered substantial business benefit. Watch the webinar to learn about one winner’s success: Cisco: Leveraging Business Architecture for Corporate Agility.

  • Businesses are seeing results. Check out the long list of case studies from global companies that have had significant success with their EA initiatives.

The X-Files were fun, but we’ll likely never know its truth from fiction. But, with Enterprise Architecture, you can find the answers to make your business a success. Data doesn’t lie. Even Scully can’t argue with that.

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