Effective Solutions Through Partnership

The Benefits of an Enterprise Architecture Program

Conferences, Enterprise Architecture, Project Management, Public Sector Partners Project Delivery Summit

enterprise-architecture
Image Credit: Agile Path

This article was originally published in November 2016.

KAI Partners, Inc. was thrilled to be one of the sponsors and presenters at last week’s Project Delivery Summit, hosted by Public Sector Partners. A great event all around, we are sharing with you today a little about the Summit, as well as some highlights from our presentation on Enterprise Architecture.

According to Public Sector Partners, “The Project Delivery Summit is designed to bring together state and local employees who manage, direct, sponsor and participate in the delivery of State and Local Government IT projects. The goal of this summit is to provide a one-day forum to deliver education, foster collaboration, and provide networking opportunities for staff at all levels (line, executive and stakeholders) who work in and around government projects.”

Not only did the Summit include great presenters like U.S. Ambassador Mary Yates, but it also gave attendees the opportunity to delve into some dynamic topics during one of 21 different sessions. KAI Partners’ President and Founder David Kendall presented during one such session, where he discussed the business value of an Enterprise Architecture program.

You may be wondering, What is Enterprise Architecture? Enterprise Architecture is the analysis and documentation of an enterprise in its current and future states from an integrated strategy, business, and technology perspective.

So, what are some business benefits of an Enterprise Architecture program? In addition to improved planning, Enterprise Architecture also provides measurable value, including shortened planning cycles, more effective planning meetings, shorter decision-making cycles, reduced re-work, fewer resource demands, and more.

An official Enterprise Architecture program can help improve decision-making by providing a comprehensive view of current capabilities and resources as well as ‘what-if’ modeling of future operations. What’s more, Enterprise Architecture improves communications through the implementation of a common language and central approach. This way, misunderstandings or requirements and solutions can be greatly reduced.

Now, with all of these benefits, what about cost? And, does an Enterprise Architecture program pose any risks? As with any program, cost and risk are two items which should be closely monitored and planned for.

The full life-cycle cost of an Enterprise Architecture program should be documented and presented to your Enterprise Architecture program sponsor to provide a clear understanding of cost right from the start. One way to estimate an Enterprise Architecture program cost is to look at each area of the implementation methodology and identify the direct and indirect costs. A few of these costs might be management and staff resources; meetings, facilities, materials, and support for stakeholder planning; and As-Is and To-Be analysis efforts.

Some potential risk areas include financial, lack of acceptance, and schedule delays. Of course, a risk mitigation strategy is a vital part of a comprehensive Enterprise Architecture program. A few strategies for risk mitigation include Executive Sponsorship, the adoption of proven Enterprise Architecture tools and techniques, and ongoing risk identification and mitigation.

We hope this helps shed a little insight into Enterprise Architecture and remember, at the end of the day, linking your strategy, business, and technology planning through an Enterprise Architecture program is something that can help improve your business across all facets.

Did you attend the Project Delivery Summit? What were some takeaways from the event for you? Interested in more about Enterprise Architecture and how it can help your business? Contact us today at info@kaipartners.com.

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