Posted by: Derek Weeks on: June 8, 2009
Enterprise Architecture (EA) increasingly covers a broader role in an economic downturn as reported recently by ZDNet. The challenge for IT departments is, according to Dana Gardner, “to balance the long-term goals against the pressing short-term needs of the business.” In fact, while most firms think they are applying what seems to be a logical approach – cut, cut, cut – in reality they are just starving themselves and will pay for it later.
In a recently published eBook entitled “BPM and EA – two smart investments in a recession,” Laura Mooney, Vice President, Corporate Communications at Metastorm, highlights how EA helps firms achieve and balance these goals: it delivers operational efficiency by identifying duplicate or underutilized overhead, it optimizes your value chain, it quickly and effectively assimilates mergers and acquisitions and it drives cost savings. Metastorm’s clients have showed real ROI by adopting EA. For example, a retail franchisor consolidated its databases from 35 to just 4, saving significant time, money and energy resources.
The panellists who took part in the discussion at the Open Group’s 22nd Annual Enterprise Architecture Practitioner Conference highlighted some further interesting points about the need of EA during times of recession: it becomes a tool for strategic business transformation, it should demonstrate a long-term path while creating short-term value for the business, it makes a business impact by working across silos, and across HR, Finance and Operations. Finally EA should be seen as a business tool that can add value rather than an IT tool.
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