This post continues from the post Enterprise Analysis - Using Business Architecture to Clarify the Muddle (Part 1).
The picture below shows how the high level view of the business connects with the elements that may be changed to improve the business performance. This view allows the analyst to connect the requirements for change with the business itself and present a context for the change that is required. It allows people to start talking about what they know - the business. One General Manager described this kind of view as lowering the barrier of participation…it encouraged the different stakeholders to engage in the project.
Business Architecture addresses the Business Analysis challenges
In the previous post I presented 4 challenges that Business Analysts face. Business architecture addresses these challenges by:
- Simplifying complexity - a high level composite view of the business allows us to more fully understand the nature of a change.
- Providing context – having a blueprint that shows the connections between goals, activities and capabilities enables analysts to provide context to any change that is planned.
- Clarifying scope – rather than stating what’s in and what’s out we are more focused on where in the business we draw the line.
- Allowing us to focus on the business change – we can focus on the amount of change rather than the number of project tasks.
Tips for using business architecture
Having applied business architecture on a number of Equinox consulting assignments, here are a couple of practical points for using business architecture:
- Keep it simple
- Involve others to lower the barrier to participation
- Focus on the business rather than the system
- Know when to stop
The feedback I received indicated that there is a great interest in this topic, and that it is time that Business Analysts should step into this discipline, as many are. I would like to acknowledge my colleagues Wayne Woodfield for allowing me to adjust and use some of his slides and Brendon Livingstone who helped me put this and the previous post together.