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BOOK - Enterprise Architecture - A Pragmatic Approach Using PEAF


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Although Transformation Debt Ratio™ is defined for each project, it can also be combined to produce an TDR for a group of projects in a program or an overall TDR for the entire Project Portfolio. Of course, when combining TDR you need to weight each individual TDR to get a balanced view.

While TDR for the entire Transformation Portfolio provides a useful metric at a point in time, it is more useful to track it over time. A sensible view might be that over time, an Enterprise might like to see the amount of work that is Compliant increase and the amount of work done in a Non-Compliant way decrease - since doing work in a Compliant way is generally the most effective, most efficient and least risky manner of doing it.

¨      In Year 0 - the year of adopting PEAF (and hence Transformation Debt™) it is more than probable that a lot of work will still have to done in a Non-Compliant way. However we make the necessary plans to do a decent amount of Remedial work the following year.

¨      In Year 1, while still having to do a lot of work in a Non-Compliant way, we perform the Remedial work we planned the year before, which lays the groundwork for Year 2.

¨      In Year 2, we can now start to do more work in a Compliant way (because of the remedial work we did in the previous year) and less work in a Non-Compliant way, while still doing some Remedial work, both of which lays the groundwork for Year 3.

¨      In Year 3, doing work in a Compliant way is now beginning to outweigh doing work in a Non-Compliant way (because of the remedial and Compliant work we did in the previous year) and this, in addition to a little Remedial work, lays the groundwork for Year 4.

¨      In Year 4 we are doing most work in a Compliant way and only do work in a Non-Compliant way when really necessary.

This is only an example of course and will vary from Enterprise to Enterprise and will be influenced by many factors such as the fiscal climate and current Enterprise Strategy.

However, the examples provided illustrate one of the indicators of increasing EA Maturity in that Enterprises that are more “mature” are the ones who spend a greater proportion of their resources doing work in a Compliant way rather than a Non-Compliant way and therefore need to spend little on remedial work.

The key point is:

If You Never PLAN To Do Transformation

In A Way That Complies With Guidance,

You Will Never DO Transformation

In A Way That Complies With Guidance.

Unless you planned for it, time pressures (the incessant need for quick wins for example) will always force you to do work in a Non-Complaint way rather than in a Compliant way. The key is breaking the cycle.

Another thing to consider is that the choices being made when formulating the Transformation Portfolio should perhaps aim to do less, better. What we mean by that is that it might be a better approach to doing less things in a Compliant way (spending the money and time you save on allowing those initiatives to execute in a Compliant way (thereby incurring no Transformation Debt™) rather than doing more things in a Non-Compliant way (thereby incurring Transformation Debt™).


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Questions to ponder...

What is the TDR for your currently executing Transformation Portfolio?

How do you want that to change going forward?

What do you need to do to make that happen?

What will you do to break the cycle?

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