Keys to Enterprise Architecture Success

By Stuart Macgregor, CEO, Real IRM Solutions and The Open Group South Africa

Avoiding the perils on the way to successful Enterprise Architecture

Enterprise architecture (EA) is more relevant today than ever before – considering the accelerating pace of technology adoption, many new and disruptive market forces, hyper-competitive environments, and rapidly changing business models.

Together, these present a burning requirement for many organisations to ‘digitise the enterprise’.

EA supports the organisation develop an holistic representation of the business, its information and technology. This provides a business tool for managing complexity and change.

The myriad benefits from successful EA practices include:

  • Competitive advantage – with so few organisations “getting it right”, having a business appropriate and sustainable EA function allows the organisation to respond to change with greater speed, and derive huge competitive advantage.
  • Market reputation – EA is essential for the organisation to promote a reputation of being well-governed (for example, EA allows the organisation to comply with King III and other governance/compliance requirements). EA acts as the crucial linchpin between corporate governance and IT governance.
  • Business transformation – EA supports major business transformations, by clearly understanding the current state, and clearly articulating the desired end-state. In this way, EA provides a clear roadmap for transformation
  • Portfolio rationalization – a structured approach to EA helps with reducing the size and complexity of the organisation’s technology estate, and removing any duplications within the application and technology portfolio.
  • Strategic support function – professional EA consulting services support the efforts of many critical areas within the enterprise – such as strategic planning, governance, risk and compliance, and solution architecture

In essence, EA facilitates the fusion between business and technology based on the fact that if the organisation cannot change its systems, it cannot change its business. New entrants are often more ‘digitally agile’: they have the ability – for example – to embrace new cloud platforms without being tied to millstone of legacy systems and processes.

The strategic theme that underpins the EA practice, and helps guard against failure, is that of ‘running the EA practice like a business, with a clearly-defined solution offering’.

Keeping this philosophy top-of-mind – across the entire ambit of people, tools, process, content, and products/services – is fundamental to ensuring that one’s EA practice is business-appropriate, sustainable, and ultimately successful. By running EA as if it is a business in its own right, in support of the enterprise’s strategic goals, the EA capability is positioned to evolve in scope and importance, and add increasing value to the enterprise over time.

However, so many EA programmes fail to achieve meaningful results. More often than not, they either end up on the scrapheap of failed IT programmes and wasted investments, or limp along with limited and isolated impact within the broader organisation.

So, why do EA programmes so often fail?

The role of the Chief Architect in ensuring EA success

Analysts confirm that the single biggest reason for failed EA programmes is lack of leadership skills within the core elements of the guiding coalition and the EA team. At the nucleus, the Chief Architect is required to lead by example and inspire others, while remaining acutely tuned into business’ needs.

Acting as the keystone in the EA structures that are being built, the Chief Architect must be flexible enough to continually adapt the business case for EA, but remain unwavering in the eventual vision – that of modernising and optimising the way the organisation functions.

The resilience of the EA function ultimately depends on the strengths of the Chief Architect.

As EA inevitably takes some time to generate sustainable returns, the Chief Architect must maintain the enthusiasm of executive stakeholders and business partners, while dealing with the ever-present threat that some individuals may revert back to old habits, divert funds to other projects, or focus on short-term wins.

This is a delicate balance, and the skills that qualify someone as a great architect don’t necessarily make them a strong leader. The most essential attributes include business acumen, the ability to translate technology into simple business outcomes, the ability to listen, communicate, present to groups, articulate the vision of the EA function, and inject enthusiasm for the EA practice.

Of course, it goes without saying that the Chief Architect must also possess the right technical skills which allow her to guide and govern the EA portfolio. In staffing the EA function, organisations should consider candidates in the context of defined career ladders and skills assessments. It is only with the right skills background that the Chief Architect will be in a position the strategic importance of the EA function within the first year of their tenure, or the practice is at risk of dissipating.

Leadership also includes aligning the differing EA visions held by the various business units and stakeholders. Everyone has a slightly different spin on what EA should achieve, and how the organisation will achieve it. While keeping stakeholders involved in the project, the Chief Architect must influence, guide, and delicately meld these visions into a single cohesive EA strategy.

Finally, the EA practice is at risk if the Chief Architect and her team are not skilled in communicating with key stakeholders across both business and technology domains and at multiple levels within the organisation. Results need to be clearly measured and demonstrated to the business. The EA vision must be constantly reinforced throughout the programme as the practice develops in maturity.

Setting up the EA team for success; the core EA team

As important as her role may be, the Chief Architect cannot ‘go it alone’. Ensuring that the right core Enterprise Architecture (EA) team is in place is the next important step in avoiding potential EA failure. Led by a strong guiding coalition and steering committee, the team needs to consider how to manage the work, how to control delivery against the plan, how any blind spots will be identified, and how they will engage with the rest of the organisation.

None of this can happen just by accident. The starting point is to conduct a critical analysis of the skills requirements, and match this with the right people in the right roles. Any silos, or ‘stovepipes’ should be dismantled, in favour of greater collaboration and knowledge-sharing – giving the Chief Architect better visibility of everything happening within the team.

So, with a strong EA team at the nucleus, and skilled individuals in the various areas of the organisation, the Chief Architect is able to allocate resources efficiently and generate the best returns in the least possible time. Excellence in the execution of the EA tasks, from beginning to end, is only ever possible with quality staff involved.

There is an ever-present risk that the core team gets pulled into detailed operational work like solution delivery – while the strategic architectural role gets deprioritised. Another common risk is that the EA practice becomes something of a ‘dumping ground’ for disparate IT team members. For this reason, when a new Chief Architect is appointed, one of her first tasks is to assess the team capabilities, restructure, replace and recruit where necessary.

The goal is to ensure the right portfolio of skills is spread across the entire EA discipline – people with the right qualifications, tool proficiencies and psychometric profiles are working together in the optimal structure.

Organisational positioning

To have legitimacy among executive stakeholders, and to avoid knee-jerk, short-term approaches that merely address symptoms (rather than dealing with root causes), the appropriate placement of the EA function is fundamental to its success.

For example, if EA is housed within the area of the Chief Technology Officer then we can expect the focus to be all about technical architectures and solutions support. If it’s positioned under the Chief Information Officer, the focus is often more on supporting solution architectures.

Reporting into business strategy and governance structures reduces technology-centric thinking. Whichever is the case, we find that organisational structure shapes the behaviour and the strategies of the teams.

Appropriate structure and alignment within the organisation is critical for ‘expectation management’. We’ve seen many cases of senior stakeholders (within whose portfolio the EA function resides) making promises to executives, shareholders, or markets – creating unrealistic expectations of what EA is capable of doing at a particular level of maturity.

The organisational design must be fit-for-purpose, depending on the firm’s specific requirements and the state of maturity. The EA function will be hindered if its scope is not clearly defined, and does not span all of the horizontal EA domains (business architecture, information architecture, data architecture, application architecture and technology architecture) and vertical domains (integration, security and solution architecture).

If these areas are fragmented, it becomes tougher to answer questions around how they will integrate, who will be responsible for what, and how the organisation will build an integrated view of the target architecture. In highly federated, decentralised or geographically-dispersed organisations, the positioning becomes even more complex –  often being required to morph according to changing business priorities. This requires a clear understanding of what EA capabilities are performed globally, regionally and locally.

The EA team needs to simultaneously build the EA capability (and start delivering results), while selling this positive story to executives – in order to achieve their further buy-in. This may place greater pressure on the teams in the short-term, as milestones and commitments are thrust into the spotlight and must be met. We recall the principle of ‘publish or perish’, which is crucial to maintaining the involvement and support of executive stakeholders.

Executive sponsorship

The business executive must empower the EA function with a defined and widely communicated mandate. Failure to do so often results in ‘turf wars’ between the EA practice and related areas of the organisation, such as the Programme Management Office or Service Management.

To build on early momentum, EA education and communication should filter down from above as one of the organisation’s highest priorities. This helps to foster business stakeholder engagement and ensure that EA content is used in the right ways “on the ground”.

Executives are also able to remove many of the obstacles that could otherwise bring on the demise of EA in the organisation. Executive sponsors may be called on to influence budgets and vendor selection, or make the necessary structural changes to the teams, or ensure that architecture governance remains firmly on the agenda.

So, in summary, it is critical to have the right people, under the right leadership (the Chief Architect and her guiding coalition), working in the right structure within the organisation. Without all three of these things in place, the EA practice is at great risk of failure.

Ivory Tower syndrome

A common reason for the collapse of EA initiatives, is architects who become overly-enamoured with the conceptual aspects of their work. They return from their retreats away from the business, with elaborate frameworks, and little practical guidance on how to implement them.

These concepts will be presented to key influencers within the organisation, most of whom will not understand the content, so their complex reference architectures will be ignored. In this way, the EA team is perceived as living in an Ivory Tower – disconnected from the business and alienating stakeholders – often leading to the withdrawal of support and sponsorship from key people.

These complex frameworks are built in isolation from the business stakeholders on the ground.

Investing too much time in detailed documentation of the “as-is states”, and creating vast arrays of diagrams, gives the impression that progress is being made, when in reality, this flurry of visible ‘activity’ is being mistaken for progress.

This academic approach to EA leads to inertia in decision-making, a state of ‘deferred commitment’ where the fear of failure leads to an inability to act. The EA practice lives by the principle of “publish or perish” (describing how critical it is to deliver tangible outputs).

This leads to distorted perspectives, where the architect’s views of the business architecture and other architecture domains are not necessarily shared by their key stakeholders.

Architects who dogmatically force their models on stakeholders – without fully appreciating the changing business’ requirements or tailoring their services to meet the business’ demands – are bound to fail.

By focusing on tangible outputs, and running the EA practice like a business, architects can effectively maintain a stakeholder-centric approach to delivering business value.

Architects need to ‘get their hands dirty’ – such as getting involved in the actual modelling, investing time in mentoring people in architecture skills, closely following the business’ needs, and evolving the EA artefacts.

This should be combined with strong marketing and communications efforts – where architects constantly communicate and evangelise the value of the EA practice to business stakeholders.

If not, the team risks the ‘Ivory Tower syndrome’ setting in, and will lose the backing of the C-suite. Even if budgets are still provided for, the bigger work surrounding EA – like maturing the EA capability, business transformation and change management – will not be possible without active executive support.

@theopengroup

By Stuart Macgregor, CEO, Real IRM

Stuart Macgregor is the CEO, Real IRM Solutions and  The Open Group South Africa. Through his personal achievements, he has gained the reputation of an Enterprise Architecture and IT Governance specialist, both in South Africa and internationally.

Macgregor participated in the development of the Microsoft Enterprise Computing Roadmap in Seattle. He was then invited by John Zachman to Scottsdale, Arizona to present a paper on using the Zachman framework to implement ERP systems. In addition, Macgregor was selected as a member of both the SAP AG Global Customer Council for Knowledge Management, and of the panel that developed COBIT 3rd Edition Management Guidelines. He has also assisted a global Life Sciences manufacturer to define their IT Governance framework, a major financial institution to define their global, regional and local IT organizational designs and strategy. He was also selected as a core member of the team that developed the South African Breweries (SABMiller) plc global IT strategy.

Stuart, as the lead researcher, assisted the IT Governance Institute map CobiT 4.0 to TOGAF®. This mapping document was published by ISACA and The Open Group. He participated in the COBIT 5 development workshop held in London in 2010.

 

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Filed under Business Transformation, EA, Enterprise Architecture, Enterprise Transformation, Standards, The Open Group

Choose UNIX® Inside

By The Open Group

In 1991, Intel Corporation started their “Intel Inside” marketing and branding campaign that turned Intel into a household name.[1] The power of “Intel Inside” was that it allowed consumers to quickly understand the value of what was “in-the-box” and make an informed buying decision.

UNIX® is another great example of a strong brand platform “inside” a bigger solution and, in some opinions, the UNIX platform has showcased a broader impact on technology than Intel.[2] An operating system (OS) that becomes UNIX certified has gone through the rigorous testing process to verify compliance with the Single UNIX Specification – The UNIX Standard.[3]  This certification provides an assurance to customers, independent software vendors, developers, integrators, and system vendors that a UNIX OS will work in a deterministic and well-defined way. “UNIX inside” allows IT decision-makers to quickly understand what is in the solution, even though the operating system is one component of the broader solution including hardware, applications, etc.

Another apt comparison to The UNIX Standard and  “Intel Inside” is UL certification mark often seen on devices using electricity. Underwriters Laboratories (UL) dates back to 1894 providing “safety-related certification, validation, testing inspection, auditing, advising and training services” around electrical devices and components.[4] From the early days of commercialized electronics a UL listed product gave confidence to consumers that what they buy would meet a rigorous set of standards from components, to wiring, to the product itself.

In the case of UNIX, The Open Group serves as the lab providing assurance to the end customers that every UNIX OS will deliver a set of rich feature sets, stability, scalability, and portability.  The UNIX® registered trademark is used in conjunction with a certified UNIX OS such as HPE HP-UX, Oracle® Solaris, IBM AIX, and many other brands to showcase its conformance.[5]

The UNIX OS has been a foundation of innovation for more than 45 years and the Single UNIX Specification (the UNIX Standard) has been in place for 20 years. “UNIX continues to be at the heart of the IT industry as it is an important enabler of other technologies such as Cloud.  Oracle Solaris 11, a UNIX OS, is a complete, integrated, and open platform engineered for large-scale enterprise Cloud which is why Oracle customers continue to prefer Solaris under the hood,” said Chris Armes, Vice President, Oracle Solaris Engineering. Global 100 and Fortune 100 customers choose “UNIX inside” for always-on mission critical computing.  Apple chose “UNIX inside” as the basis of their flagship operating system – MAC OS X / El Capitan.[6]

By The Open Group

Learn more about UNIX innovation with the resources listed below and why so many companies have chosen “UNIX inside”.

© The Open Group 2016.

UNIX is a registered trademark of The Open Group.  HP-UX is a registered trademark of HPE.  AIX is a registered trademark of IBM.  Oracle Solaris is a registered trademark of Oracle Corporation. El Capitan and Mac OS X are trademarks of Apple Inc.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intel#Intel_Inside

[2] The UNIX Evolution: An Innovative History Blog:  https://blog.opengroup.org/2016/02/23/the-unix-evolution-an-innovative-history/

[3] The Single UNIX Specification: http://www.unix.org/version4/overview.html

[4] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UL_%28safety_organization%29

[5] http://www.opengroup.org/openbrand/register/

[6] https://blog.opengroup.org/2015/10/02/mac-os-x-el-capitan-achieves-unix-certification/

 

 

 

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Filed under Cloud, digital business, digital technologies, Enterprise Architecture, Single UNIX Specification, Standards, UNIX

TOGAF® User Group Meeting – The Open Group London 2016

By The Open Group

On April 27, the second TOGAF® User Group Meeting was held at The Open Group London 2016. The session brought together TOGAF users and stakeholders to share information, best practices and learning, for the development of individual practitioners’ knowledge and the standard as a whole. Discussions revolved around how to better use TOGAF in practice within different organizations and industries, success stories and areas of improvement, as well as suggestions as to how the standard can be improved upon in the future.

Central Hall Westminster conservatory was packed, as Steve Nunn, President and CEO of The Open Group, opened the meeting with a warm welcome to the community. He heralded the session as an initiative that was ‘trailblazing’ the way for the development of TOGAF®, an Open Group standard, which now has more than 55,000 certifications.

The session was hosted by Terry Blevins, a Fellow of The Open Group and Director of The Open Group Governing Board. Terry has been involved in development of the TOGAF standard for years and has been a major contributor to its development. He stressed that as the community continues to grow, it’s so important to hear real-world experiences of those using the standard to get a broader perspective on what works, what doesn’t, and how it can evolve.

To achieve this, the TOGAF User Group staged an ‘Open Debate’. Fashioned on an Oxford-style debate, it was designed to tap into people’s feelings about the TOGAF standard and allow questions and different points of view to be shared around the room. Standard debating rules were explained, before the proposition declaration was laid out:

“The TOGAF® Architecture Development Method (ADM) is not agile and therefore there is a need to change the specification to make it agile.”

Arguing ‘For’ the proposition was Chris Armstrong, President of Armstrong Process Group, Inc. and internationally recognized thought leader and expert in iterative software development, Enterprise Architecture, object-orientated analysis and design, the Unified Modelling Language, use case driver requirements and process implementation.

Arguing ‘Against’ the proposition was Paul Homan, Technology Strategy Consultant for IBM for eight years. He is a Certified Distinguished IT Architect, specializing in Enterprise Architecture joining IBM from end-user environments, having worked as Chief Architect in both the UK Post Office and Royal Mail. Not only has he established Enterprise Architecture practices, but also lived with the results.

By The Open Group

Open Debate with Paul Homan and Chris Armstrong

In order to understand the audience’s view at the outset of the debate, attendees were asked to vote on their existing standpoint. A few hands showed support for changing the specification to make it agile, and a few abstained. However, most hands were raised against the proposition, agreeing that the ADM was already agile in nature.

Chris then had seven minutes to argue his case – that the TOGAF ADM is not agile and needs to change. He conceded that very few people would steadfastly ignore change within their organization and aim to respond to it badly, however in the whole 692 pages of TOGAF version 9.1, agile is only mentioned twice, agility 6 times and lean is not mentioned at all. Furthermore, the mere fact that there are 692 pages could be taken to indicate the lack of agility altogether. The crop circle diagram that underpins the whole framework appears linear and waterfall in appearance, and so lacking in agility by nature. He argued that the only way that the TOGAF ADM can realistically support an agile enterprise is by becoming agile itself.

Likewise, Paul put his seven-minute case forward – arguing that the TOGAF ADM is agile and does not require any changes to make it so. He made the point that as an architect, everything has to have a reference system, and that the TOGAF ADM is a framework for developing architecture, not a style guide. The specification is actually part of a wider ecosystem of material, including pocket guides, whitepapers, translations and qualifications, and all of these items help to move the enterprise away from project management bureaucracy, towards agile project development. Enterprise Architects, he said, should live by the oath: ‘I will apply for the benefit of the enterprise, all architecture practices that are required’. This is so as to make agile more meaningful and relevant. Instead of relying on the framework, agility is created through just enough architecture, coupled with the interpretation and implementation of the framework by the practitioner. Therefore, skills are the most important element in these projects.

Following these opening statements, TOGAF users were encouraged to ask questions to the pair. A couple of these, included below, give a flavor of the discussion:

Q: Chris, you counted the number of times TOGAF uses the word agile – but how many occurrences are there where it says you cannot be agile and processes must take a long time?

A: Chris –Just because TOGAF does not say you cannot be agile, does not mean it is agile itself. The best laid plans will not work if the people delivering it do not see where they fit in and translate their work to the project they are implementing. We are not recognizing significant changes in delivery from the waterfall practices of many years ago.

Paul – It’s a prioritization exercise – we need to worry about the behaviors of practitioners and the interaction of enterprise architecture functions within a project, rather than the spec and other incentives. Accessibility is key – we can help people access this body of knowledge without having to rethink the whole body of knowledge

Q: The TOGAF standard is a reference model and we need to adapt to the particular needs of each organization, so how do you handle that?

A: Paul – It’s all about consumption. We have to consider that somebody has to be able to consume the guidance that we want to provide as EAs within a development project. We want them to be aware of what matters to us from an EA perspective – we shouldn’t be trying to out-design them, we should just think about what is relevant to us that they are potentially not aware of. This comes back to understanding your consumer.

It’s a bit like someone that comes to service the heating in a house. The consumer is the house owner and the servicer has a tool bag, which in this case is the TOGAF standard. It has all the tools in it you might need. Boilers will change, but what is really changing in an agile world is that customer experience is evolving. This would include their presentation, reliability and professionalism – customers get a good experience from behaviors and style, not the toolset. The tool bag will remain the same, but behavior and how it is applied needs to change and get better.

Q: Chris, are you saying that we should be working in a completely agile fashion and that waterfall methods are no longer relevant?

Chris – We need to acknowledge the complexity of various different organizations, and we need to find the balance between always evolving technology and approval times, for example. Agility in enterprise architecture is often compensating for a lack of agility throughout the rest of the enterprise – maybe solution delivery teams wouldn’t have to be so agile if everywhere else in the company was a bit more agile.

Q: The crop circle is a waterfall model, this is reflected in the spec itself, but if you keep the framework are we missing the opportunity to address different levels of agility?

Chris –  We need to change the crop circle. This might be met with great resistance but it implies that you have to wait to complete one phase to start the next one – you should be doing certain processes every day and not waiting to go from one stage to another.

Paul – The reader is lulled into the idea that there is a sequence and you must complete one phase before another. I think that there is always going to be a weakness in condensing a large body of knowledge into one diagram, and there is always going to be approximation which is what has happened from TOGAF® 9.1 into the crop circle. There are things we can assume – but this is why the spec says it’s not intended to be waterfall.

The two speakers then summarized their arguments. Paul reinforced his argument that the ADM is fit for purpose as a Hippocratic Oath for EAs, but what matters is the changes in our behavior to complement this. Chris stated that the spec does need to change, to add supplemental guidance so people can be guided in how to implement TOGAF as an agile framework.

When it came to the final vote from the audience, more people had been persuaded by the ‘for’ argument, to change the ADM spec, however the ‘against’ argument still had more support in the room. This conclusion demonstrated that there was a display of two sound and compelling arguments for each side, and Terry noted that more time for questions would be needed at the next debate!

Following the debate came two breakout sessions; ‘The Roles of People in TOGAF Driven Architecture Initiatives’ from Len Fehskens, Editor, Journal of Enterprise Architecture (AEA), and ‘Using TOGAF® for Digital Business Transformation’ from Sonia Gonzalez, The Open Group Architecture Forum Director. These sessions were used to open up a freer dialogue between users, to discuss their ideas and experiences around  the TOGAF standard.

Check out video highlights of the debate here!

Please join us at the next TOGAF® User Group Meeting taking place at The Open Group Austin 2016 July 18 – 21!

@theopengroup #ogLON #ogAUS

 

 

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Filed under Association of Enterprise Architects, Certifications, EA, Enterprise Architecture, Professional Development, standards, Steve Nunn, The Open Group London 2016, TOGAF®, TOGAF®, Uncategorized

The Open Group London 2016 – Day Three Highlights

By Loren K. Baynes, Director, Global Marketing Communications, The Open Group

On Wednesday, April 27, The Open Group London 2016 began with the second TOGAF® User Group Meeting held in the conservatory of Central Hall Westminster. Steve Nunn, President and CEO of The Open Group, opened the meeting with a warm welcome to the community. He stated a session like this is ‘trailblazing’ the way for the development of TOGAF®, an Open Group standard, which now has reached over 55,000 total certifications!

By Loren K. Baynes, Director, Global Marketing Communications

 

Following the success of the inaugural TOGAF® User Group Meeting at the San Francisco event in January, this session focused around an ‘Open Debate’, chaired by Terry Blevins, a Fellow of The Open Group and member of The Open Group Governing Board. He stressed that as the community continues to grow, it is so important to hear real-world experiences of those using the standard to get a broader perspective on what works, what doesn’t, and how it can evolve. A heated discussion ensued, as the debaters Chris Armstrong, President, APG, and Paul Homan, Enterprise Architect, IBM, argued their case on either side of the proposition:

“TOGAF® ADM is not agile and therefore there is a need to change the specification to make it agile.”

After a series of audience questions, the session ended with a vote, which revealed that more people had been persuaded by the ‘for’ argument, to change the ADM spec, however the ‘against’ argument still had more support in the room. This conclusion demonstrated that there was a display of two sound and compelling arguments for each side, and Terry took note that more time for questions would be needed at the next debate!

Two breakout sessions were then held: ‘The Roles of People in TOGAF® Driven Architecture Initiatives’ from Len Fehskens, Editor, Journal of Enterprise Architecture, AEA, and ‘Using TOGAF® for Digital Business Transformation’ from Sonia Gonzalez, Architecture Forum Director, The Open Group. These sessions were used to open up a dialogue between users, to discuss their ideas and experiences around TOGAF®.

By Loren K. Baynes, Director, Global Marketing Communications

 

The afternoon continued with various tracks on the Internet of Things, EA Practice, Architecture Methods and Techniques, Security Requirements and ArchiMate® Case Studies and Workshop.  ArchiMate is an Open Group standard.

A special thank you to our sponsors and exhibitors:  avolution, BiZZdesign, Good e-Learning, Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE), Troux by planview, Association of Enterprise Architects (AEA), ITSMF UK, qualiware, Van Haren Publishing, The ITSM Review

Please join us at The Open Group Austin 2016 in July which will also include the next TOGAF® User Group Meeting!

@theopengroup #ogLON #ogAUS

 

By Loren K. Baynes, Director, Global Marketing Communications

Loren K. Baynes, Director, Global Marketing Communications, joined The Open Group in 2013 and spearheads corporate marketing initiatives, primarily the website, blog, media relations and social media. Loren has over 20 years experience in brand marketing and public relations and, prior to The Open Group, was with The Walt Disney Company for over 10 years. Loren holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from Texas A&M University. She is based in the US.

 

 

 

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Filed under ArchiMate, ArchiMate®, Association of Enterprise Architects, Boundaryless Information Flow™, Certifications, EA, Enterprise Architecture, Standards, Steve Nunn, The Open Group London 2016, TOGAF®, Uncategorized

The Open Group London 2016 – Day Two Highlights

By Loren K. Baynes, Director, Global Marketing Communications, The Open Group

After a fantastic first day in Central Hall Westminster, The Open Group London 2016 continued on Tuesday, April 26 as attendees looked forward to another excellent line-up of speakers and topics. The Open Group President and CEO Steve Nunn welcomed the audience and announced that a day after launch, the IT4IT™ Certification Program already had over 50 certified people signed up. The certification is achieved by individuals who demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the IT4IT™ Reference Architecture, Version 2.0 standard.  Steve was then joined on stage by The Open Group CTO Dave Lounsbury, to discuss digital transformation and enabling digital business, with a focus on IT’s critical role in helping to achieve this.

Tuesday’s plenary sessions then got underway, with a highly entertaining presentation from Ron Tolido, Senior VP, Group CTO Office, Global Insights & Data Practice, CapGemini. Ron used numerous Game of Thrones references to explain how the open business data lake could be a blueprint for agile, data-driven businesses. He was quick to point out though that data ran the risk of appearing to a business in many elephant-themed guises; be it the “white elephant” driving up costs, the “Dumbo”, i.e. a fantasy, or the ”elephant in the room” than nobody wants to mention. To summarize, Ron, continuing his Game of Thrones-themed talk, argued that we need “burning [big data] platforms that are the pièce de résistance of Enterprise Architecture”.

By Loren K. Baynes, Director, Global Marketing Communications

Steve Nunn, Ron Tolido

It was then the turn of Sven van Wilpen, Business Architect, Fokker Industries, and Stuart Boardman, Enterprise Architect, Resilient EA, to discuss digitization in the aerospace industry and more specifically, the Fokker Factory. Coincidentally, elephants reared their collective trunks for the second time in the morning, when Stuart described the role of the architect as herding elephants.

One of the most interesting discussion points that emerged from this presentation was around change management, and it became clear that Fokker was putting some great process in place to support stakeholders who have to deal with the change. Not only that, but it needed to be made clear to them why change would make their lives better. Stuart also talked about implementing the right kind of change, highlighting the fact that when you make a process digital, it works differently. Don’t just digitize that manual process, but change the process itself.

After the coffee break, Steve Nunn made a presentation to Serge Thorn with HSBC, in recognition of his tireless work on The Open Group Architecture Forum TOGAF Localization Committee.  TOGAF® is an Open Group standard.

By Loren K. Baynes, Director, Global Marketing Communications

Serge Thorn, Steve Nunn

At this point, Steve handed the reins over to Wipro’s Chief Enterprise Architect & Head of Academy of EA, Pallab Saha for the rest of the morning session, to talk first about the relevance of Enterprise Architecture for India, and then about how it is helping to turn aspiration into inspiration to make digital government a reality.

Pallab talked in great detail about the e-Pragati project, which was designed to bring all government services under one roof to illustrate this. He described it as a new paradigm in governance, based on a whole-of-government framework that transcends departmental boundaries. Helpfully, Pallab also showcased a great video that explained the initiative in more detail and it is interesting to note that this regional project is being championed as best practice for other provinces in India.

The afternoon saw the conversations split into separate tracks, focused on Healthcare, Open Platform 3.0™, ArchiMate®, and a series of TOGAF® 9 tutorials, including:

  • History of The Open Group Healthcare Forum, Jason Lee, Director, Healthcare Forum, The Open Group
  • Architecting Customer Experience: Driving Transformative Digital Business, Trishit Baran Sengupta, Enterprise Architect, Wipro
  • Using TOGAF®, ArchiMate® and Open FAIR for Business Driven InfoSec, Thorbjørn Ellefsen, Managing Business Analyst, Capgemini
  • Creating an EA for Genesis Housing Association, Michelle Supper, Enterprise and System Architect, Science Inspired Ltd

The second day of the London event concluded with a networking dinner at Emirates Stadium – home of the Arsenal Football Club. In addition to a private tour of the stadium, guests enjoyed live music and a scrumptious dinner.  Allen Brown, former CEO of The Open Group, was announced as a Fellow, an honor bestowed upon only a select few for their immense dedication and body of work at The Open Group.

By Loren K. Baynes, Director, Global Marketing Communications

@theopengroup #ogLON

By Loren K. Baynes, Director, Global Marketing Communications

Loren K. Baynes, Director, Global Marketing Communications, joined The Open Group in 2013 and spearheads corporate marketing initiatives, primarily the website, blog, media relations and social media. Loren has over 20 years experience in brand marketing and public relations and, prior to The Open Group, was with The Walt Disney Company for over 10 years. Loren holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from Texas A&M University. She is based in the US.

 

 

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Filed under Boundaryless Information Flow™, Cloud, Data Lake, Digital Transformation, EA, Enterprise Transformation, interoperability, IoT, open platform 3.0, Standards, Steve Nunn, The Open Group London 2016, TOGAF®, Uncategorized

The Open Group London 2016 – Day One Highlights

By Loren K. Baynes, Director, Global Marketing Communications, The Open Group

On Monday, April 25th, The Open Group London 2016 kicked off with an opening speech from The Open Group President and CEO Steve Nunn to a packed room at the Central Hall Westminster.  The magnificent venue is just a stone’s throw from the iconic Westminster Abbey. Almost 300 guests from 27 countries around the globe have joined this exciting, informative event.

After a warm welcome and a recap of the successes of The Open Group IT4IT™ Forum to date – including the launch of the Standard and Management Guide – Steve went on to announce the launch of the IT4IT™ Certification Program.

The IT4IT Foundation Certification is now available to individuals who demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the IT4IT™ Reference Architecture, Version 2.0 standard. The first level of certification being launched provides validation that the candidate has gained knowledge of the terminology, structure, basic concepts, and understands the core principles of the IT4IT Reference Architecture and the IT Value Chain.

Monday’s plenary sessions continued the focus on  IT4IT, beginning with a presentation from Tony Price, Director, WW IT4IT Strategic Consulting, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, and Erik van Busschbach, World-Wide Chief Technologist for IT Management, HPE Software Services CTO Office, Hewlett Packard Enterprise. Erik and Tony explained how organizations can use IT4IT to move away from talking about Architecture towards discussions around business value. Every audience wants value but they all perceive this value in different ways. Tony explained the importance of contextualizing value to individuals in order for it to be effective.

By Loren K. Baynes, Director, Global Marketing Communications

Erik van Busschbach, Tony Price, Steve Nunn

The IT4IT discussion also featured a joint presentation on ‘Managing the Business of IT’ from Michael Fulton, Principal Architect, CC&C Solutions; David Hornford, Managing Partner, Conexiam; Luke Bradley, Principle Architect, Technology Shared Services Centre, Vodafone Group; David Gilmour, Director, Panastra Pte Ltd, Singapore.

The speakers went into detail about the impact IT4IT can have on an organization. Mike Fulton started with the basics of IT4IT and the Value Chain model, before going on to discuss where IT4IT fits into TOGAF®, an Open Group standard, COBIT and Agile. Luke Bradley provided insight into how IT4IT was being used at Vodafone Group, where there are four main areas of transformation – process, service model, organization, and technology. The importance of getting away from bulk renewal projects and moving towards smaller sensible building blocks was stressed by David Gilmour, who also explained how IT4IT was a “jolly good thing” for business, which raised a smile in the packed-out room.

Gunnar Menzel, Vice President & Chief Architect Officer, ‎Capgemini, came to the stage proudly displaying his medal from the London Marathon from the day before the event – many congratulations to him for a fantastic time of 03:52:15! His presentation focused on how IT4IT can help with Agile DevOps. Businesses that realize DevOps’ full potential are more agile in providing new products and services and can deliver superior quality, but enterprises often encounter difficulties due to the growing number of product choices, definitions and services.

Gunnar directed delegates to The Open Group whitepaper, ‘IT4IT™ Agile Scenario’, which was released in February 2016 and includes a DevOps definition, DevOps Maturity Model as well as a DevOps Implementation framework.

The final session before Monday’s break for lunch came from Henry Franken, CEO at BiZZdesign and chair of The ArchiMate® Forum at The Open Group. Henry presented the results of a survey looking at business transformation, noting that a “business as usual” approach is preventing effective business transformation, along with a lack of strategic design insights and a lack of organizational commitment. He explained how businesses should be taking small steps to embrace change, collaborate on change and make sure to utilize techniques to digitize change capabilities.

The afternoon saw additional tracks taking place on IT4IT, Security and Enterprise Architecture, including:

  • Trusted and Secure OpenStack Cloud, Shawn Mullen, Cloud Security Architect, IBM, US
  • Seven Reasons IT4IT™ is Good News for Architects, Daniel Warfield, Senior Enterprise Architect, CC&C Americas
  • A Future for Enterprise Architecture, Len Fehskens, Chief Editor, Association of Enterprise Architects
  • Mils Initiatives: Emerging Open Group Standards for Modular Approach to Critical Systems, Rance DeLong, Staff Scientist – EC Projects, The Open Group

Sally Long, Director of The Open Group Trusted Technology Forum (OTTF), also presented on OTTF in a session which focused on cybersecurity and supply chain risks, how the standard and the accreditation can address them, and what steps organizations can take to assure products are more secure and enterprises stay safe. The presentation was a recap of a recently recorded webinar which can be found here.

Robert Wiesman, CEO at Build the Vision Inc., took the opportunity to discuss his use of EA as a business technique to conduct Architecture-based planning for a huge business transformation.

After a full day of sessions, the first day of the London event concluded with drinks and networking at the Central Hall Westminster.

@theopengroup #ogLON

By Loren K. Baynes, Director, Global Marketing CommunicationsLoren K. Baynes, Director, Global Marketing Communications, joined The Open Group in 2013 and spearheads corporate marketing initiatives, primarily the website, blog, media relations and social media. Loren has over 20 years experience in brand marketing and public relations and, prior to The Open Group, was with The Walt Disney Company for over 10 years. Loren holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from Texas A&M University. She is based in the US.

 

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Filed under Accreditations, ArchiMate, ArchiMate®, Boundaryless Information Flow™, Certifications, digital business, Enterprise Architecture, Enterprise Transformation, interoperability, IT4IT, OTTF, standards, Steve Nunn, The Open Group London 2016, TOGAF®, TOGAF®

UNIX®: The “Always On” OS

By The Open Group

“High availability”, in its simplest definition, “is a characteristic of a system, which aims to ensure an agreed level of operational performance for a higher than normal period.”[1] For computer systems high availability generally focuses on the technologies that maximize system uptime by building in fault tolerance to overcome application, operating system, and hardware failures. Uptime is often measured by the “number of 9s” of availability percentage with, for example 99% (two nines), meaning a system is down for 3.65 days a year for planned and unplanned downtime. Based on the 2015-2016 ITIC Reliability Report, 99% was a common expectation in the mid-90s, but of the 71% companies surveyed, there is an expectation of 99.99% (four 9s or 52.56 minutes per year) and 25% expect 99.999% (five 9s or 5.26 minutes of downtime).[2] For mission critical environments, 99.999% is a great example of high availability operational performance expectation.

The ITIC Report enumerates numerous reasons for lack of achieving high availability (Exhibit 2 in the report) with human error being a major contributor (49%) and several others revolving aspects of the operating systems/software (security flows, bugs in OS, integration/interoperability issues, lack of documentation, lack of training, etc.).

The UNIX Standard is intended to address many of those issues impacting system reliability and uptime by providing a robust foundation including standard/apis to make it easier to build reliable and interpolatable software, common utilities/commands to make it easier to learn and administer, supported by robust documentation (1700+ manual pages), and a fair degree of quality assurance with more than 45,000 functional tests. Collectively, all of these features and technical documentation creates a great foundation within a UNIX operating system, which then can compliment the software and hardware solutions focused on improving high availability.

By The Open Group

The UNIX standard and the compliant operating systems are only one piece of the high availability story since it is part of the broader ecosystem that companies have come to rely on for their high availability solutions across the globe in key vertical industries such as telecom, banking, stock trading, Pharma/medical, infrastructure, etc. The five-9s can support multi-millions of dollars in revenue; save lives; deliver astronauts safely into space; deliver a robust foundation in global defense, and much more.

“A solid foundation is built upon standards, because standards provide assurance. Hewlett Packard Enterprise UNIX standards develop and deliver consistency. As we look at this, we talk about consistent APIs, consistent command line, and consistent integration between users and applications. A deterministic behavior is critical to high availability, because when it’s non-deterministic, things go wrong,” said Jeff Kyle, Director, Mission Critical Solutions, HPE. The UNIX standard is evolving to nurture the ecosystem and deliver what the market demands in these mission critical environments. When continuous computing for workloads is vital to the enterprise, the UNIX operating system is the best solution. The result is a proven infrastructure that accelerates business value and lowers your risk for the “always on” mission critical environments.[3]

Watch the UNIX: Journey of Innovation video to learn more about the UNIX value and importance to the market.

© The Open Group 2016

UNIX is a registered trademark of The Open Group. HP-UX is a registered trademark of HPE.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High_availability

[2] ITIC 2015 – 2016 Global Server Hardware, Server OS Reliability Report — http://www.idgconnect.com/view_abstract/33194/itic-2015-2016-global-server-hardware-server-os-reliability-report

[3] http://h17007.www1.hp.com/za/en/business-critical/operating-environments/hpux11i/index.aspx#.VvsPpT9ElhM

 

 

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Filed under HPE, Jeff Kyle, operating system, Single UNIX Specification, Standards, The Open Group, Uncategorized, UNIX