The artefacts defined in PEAF constitute the EA Meta-model
and some of its content such as Principles.
There are many Meta-models that already exist (for the
reasons defined above) and the lack of a Meta-model has never really been a
reason why EA initiatives fail. For this reason, PEAF does not concentrate on
defining a complete and detailed Meta-model (no point reinventing the wheel).
However, PEAF does defines some important things that are usually missing and
also exposes a higher level structure that people can use to understand how the
detailed Meta-models they wish to use fit and relate.
Unfortunately, this is not an easy task because all the
myriad Meta-models out there do not share any common backbone or structure
(such as MACE and MAGMA). Even if you can figure out which parts of which
Meta-models you wish to use, integrating them into a whole is also fraught with
difficulty, again because there is no common meta-meta-structure (such as MACE
This is exacerbated by Tool Vendors not providing facilities
for the importation and separate management of different Meta-models from
different sources along with the functionality to then present and manage and
use them as a coherent whole.
This whole problem area is an area that Pragmatic is currently working on, driving
Meta-model providers to structure their Meta-models around a Structural Ontology
(MACE), a Transformation Ontology (MAGMA), all expressed at different levels of
abstraction (Enterprise Context, Contextual, Conceptual, Logical, Physical,
Operational) and driving Tool Vendors to think about how to then use them and
allow people to use and manipulate them.
This will be a long and hard road (some say impossible), but
one that will reap fantastic benefits for Enterprises globally. These 2 things
(doing the impossible and fantastic rewards for customers) are the things that
mean it’s something that Pragmatic has a
passion to do.
In the meantime, Pragmatic
will continue to map existing Meta-models to MACE and MAGMA to provide
Enterprises with, at least, a starting point to understand how they relate and
therefore how to adopt them.
Do you use multiple
What Meta-models do you
Do they have limitations?
How do you integrate them?
Enterprise Strategy (aka Business Strategy)
A strategy is really just a high level plan and answers four
Where are we?
Where do we want/need to go?
Why do we want/need to go there?
How will we get there?
I say “should” because many “Strategy” documents produced by
Enterprises are not Strategy documents at all based on this definition. The
only thing that makes a lot of them “Strategy” documents is because they have
the word “Strategy” written on the front!
Although we use the term Enterprise Strategy (and urge
others to do so) many Enterprises refer to this as Business Strategy. The term
is in widespread use and there is nothing wrong with that per se. But as time
has passed since it was first used, IT happened! More importantly people have
begun (unfortunately) to refer to IT and “The Business” (as PEAF does - because
you cannot ignore reality however wrong it may be from a purist’s perspective).
The word Business has come to mean “everything in the Enterprise that is not
IT”. This distinction is reinforced with terms such as Business Analysis and
Business Analysts who work 99% of the time purely on the people and process issues
of a solution, leaving the IT issues to someone else. So the term Business
Strategy would seem to intimate that there is a separate IT Strategy (another
slight misnomer as explained below). In addition the term Business is not very
general to refer to the whole (do people refer to the Army as “The Business”?)
and so we prefer to use the word Enterprise hence we use the term Enterprise
Strategy instead of Business Strategy because it is, after all, the Strategy of
the Enterprise - aka a high level plan of where we are, where we want to go to,
why we want/need to go there and how we are going to get there.
Transformation Strategy (aka IT Strategy)
Although we use the term Transformation Strategy (and urge
others to do so) many Enterprises refer to this as IT Strategy. This has
happened because most of the Transformation happening in any Enterprise is IT
Transformation. The difference between Transformation and IT has become blurred
Plate A (Normal View)
illustrates a (flawed) mental model that many people have. It takes the view
that the Business Strategy is written and then thrown over a wall to those IT
bods to figure out the IT strategy, and out of that there then comes projects -
generally IT projects because most transformation with is all or mostly about
changing IT. Effectively the proper Roadmapping phase is lost or, if not lost,
limited to IT.
Plate B (Pragmatic View)
illustrates the Pragmatic view where the
Business and IT strategies are formulated together. They are (should be) inextricably
linked and must be formulated together as each feeds on the other. The IT
Strategy is shown smaller because the Business Strategy is much bigger! The
Business Strategy includes, Methods, Artefacts, Culture and part of Environment
(IT - which is itself a sub domain of the larger Technology domain) while the
IT Strategy only covers the IT part of the Technology Part of the Environment
domain. Thus the Business Strategy and IT Strategy come together to make the
Enterprise Strategy which then flows into the Transformation Strategy (the high
level plan of how the required Enterprise Transformation will be undertaken)
It should be noted here that we are walking a fine line
between the words I would like to use and the words I have to use because of
history and the way people generally use them (rightly or wrongly).
Do you agree with the
definition of a “Strategy” above? If not, how would you define a “Strategy”?
Do things in your Enterprise
that are called “Strategy” define 1) Where you are, 2) Where you want to go,
3) Why you need to go there, 4) How will you get there?
Does your Enterprise define an
integrated Enterprise Strategy (Business and IT)?
Does your Enterprise define an
integrated Transformation Strategy (Business and IT)?
If not, does this cause any
issues or problems?
If so what do you need to do
to alleviate them?