Why Business Outcome Journey Maps are a useful technique for business architects

Dec 5, 2017
Written by
Marc Lankhorst
Marc Lankhorst

Why Business Outcome Journey Maps are a useful technique for business architects

Business Outcome Journey Maps are a new technique that help you focus on the key aspects of value creation in your enterprise. Here we show you what they are, why they are useful and how they are supported in Enterprise Studio.

Recently, we have written about our proposal to add the Value Stream concept to the ArchiMate modeling language. This concept provides an end-to-end view of the value creation by an enterprise, from the perspective of its stakeholders: customers, end-users, partners, et cetera. A while ago, we described how you can use Customer Journey Maps to graphically represent the customer experience of an organization. Such a journey map shows the different stages and touch points that a customer encounters, the channels used for these interactions, and the quality of the customer experience in a single view. The same visual approach can be applied at a more abstract level to a value stream, yielding what Gartner calls a Business Outcome Journey Map.

The example below shows such a Business Outcome Journey Map for the main value stream of an insurance company. It depicts several aspects of this value creation:

  • the main outcome and stakeholder of the value stream (on the left)
  • the stages of the value stream (on top)
  • the goals and outcomes of the different stages and the value propositions they produce
  • the capabilities needed for each stage

Business Outcome Journey Map

All of these aspects map directly onto the corresponding ArchiMate 3 concepts of Outcome, Value, Stakeholder and Capability, and the proposed Value Stream concept.

This visualization is a very useful tool for business architects. It shows in a single overview a number of key business aspects that management can easily understand, without the need to go into the underlying complexity of the architecture. By combining useful techniques such as capability maps, journey maps, and value stream/capability cross-mapping, it helps you focus on the salient aspects of value creation in the enterprise.

Business Outcome Journey Map example

You can also combine this with various analyses such as capability heatmapping, further enriching this overview. Below, we see a simple capability heatmap showing the cost level of capabilities. At the bottom of the figure, we also see a metric with the perceived value (from the stakeholder’s perspective) across the stages of the journey.

This way, you can create a very rich and informative picture of the value creation in your enterprise. For example, this analysis shows that the capability “Distribution channel management” has a high cost, but its perceived value is also high, so it provides value for money. “Sales execution”, another costly capability, is deemed of low value. This may require management attention to lower the cost and/or improve the value this capability delivers.

Such a business outcome journey does not need to be limited by the boundaries of your own enterprise. You might incorporate external partners as well, if they are participants in your value streams. This brings us to ecosystem modeling, something we will discuss in a future blog post.

All of this and several other new techniques for business architecture and strategy development are supported in the next release of Enterprise Studio. Stay tuned for more!