The 2020 shutdowns showed us that technology and the right structure can help businesses face the unknown. Indeed, those that were plugged in to the latest and greatest tech were some of the biggest winners during the pandemic, and it’s the strategies and technologies that they utilized that enabled them to not miss a beat when many workers were sent home and businesses tried to meet the demands of their clients and customers under the new paradigm.
Now, more than ever, agility, problem solving and maintaining a holistic view of your efforts is what’s important to organizations, and businesses all over the world over are seeing value in creating a vision and implementing the tools and workflows to help adapt and persevere in today’s always on, always changing business environment.
For many organizations, that means doubling down on enterprise architecture and the value it brings to business. In fact, enterprise architecture can help define how your organization confronts the challenges of the future, in addition to allowing you to build stability into the organization itself.
Adding Value With Enterprise Architecture
While it may seem like a lot of extra work precisely at a time when many businesses are playing catch up, the benefits of enterprise architecture for organizations are numerous. With a holistic approach and a common set of standards for the allocation of resources and the direction of your company, enterprise architecture provides immense value for organizations that need guiderails and constraints to stay aligned and focused on the bigger picture, especially if that bigger picture is changing.
Sure, many organizations are just trying to get through the day, but enterprise architecture pushes them to be better by establishing goals and strategically working towards them. Larger organizations don’t typically have the means to pivot on a dime or to incorporate new technologies at the drop of a hat, and that’s where a defined strategy can help your organization meet the demands of an always shifting business landscape.
While CIOs may be looking towards blockchain, AI and cognitive computing, it’s actually enterprise architecture that provides the most value for organizations that want to stay in front of the market. It may not receive the lion’s share of attention, but it can affect almost everything your organization does, from strategy and business goals to the collection and use of data, as well as infrastructure and security.
Implementing Enterprise Architecture Business Models
The reason that enterprise architecture provides outsized value for organizations is because no business can sit on their successes for very long. Nokia was actually a paper company before they decided to get into the phone business in the 60s. Wrigley used to sell soap before shifting to gum. And if you’ve been in business long enough, you’ve likely shifted your focus and resources with the times to stay relevant and to capitalize on opportunities in the market. And the one thing that you can use to shift your strategies and goals effectively is enterprise architecture, allowing you to incorporate new technologies and meeting your changing business goals.
Generally, enterprise architecture helps businesses in several distinct ways. Not only can it help you collect and manage data, it can assist in leveraging that data in useful ways, helping you make better decisions while staying more in tune with the changing landscape. It can also reduce redundancy and cost, allowing you to get more out of your existing resources while also cluing you in to areas where you may want to double down or pull back from. Due to the modular nature of enterprise architecture, you’ll have a supporting framework to help you make better decisions and implement new strategies that can increase productivity, reduce costs and raise revenues.
Getting Started With Enterprise Architecture
Most organizations can benefit from enterprise architecture by breaking it out into a planning phase and an implementation phase. First, a business must analyze and validate their needs, then move on to the opportunities that can help affect those goals. Next, a codified plan can be created that sets forth the vision and timelines in a convenient roadmap. Once buy-in is achieved and funding is established, then resources can be directed towards the initiative with certain KPIs to help inform the full benefits of it all.
However, this is all easier said than done, and it’s true that a lot of effort and resources could be put towards enterprise architecture without providing real value for the organization itself. Often, this comes down to an issue in the planning or implementation stages, and a comprehensive review of the initiative may be in order.
Training can also help, and TOGAF certification can ensure that your organization and departments will be following best practices for adding true enterprise architecture value. Managers, security architects and IT planners can all benefit from TOGAF certification, and the more institutional knowledge you have, the more likely your EA implementation will be a success. Learn more about TOGAF certified training today.