Nick Reed

APIs – Managing Challenges with a Portfolio Management Approach

Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) have emerged in recent years as a key enabler of digital transformation and enterprise agility.

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Raz Mitache

100 Questions to Ace an Enterprise Architect Job Interview

Interviews are where jobs are won or lost. A résumé – especially a strong one – will ensure you get your foot in the door but to actually secure the position you need to shine during the interview, which means being prepared. Preparation makes you look knowledgeable and relaxed, two traits that people generally prize in their work colleagues.  

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Marc LankhorstRob Kroese

Data Analysis with Dashboards in HoriZZon

In my recent blog post on stakeholder communication, I described various basic forms of communication about architecture, with diagrams, tables, heatmaps and the like. What I did not touch upon in that post is how you can enrich your architecture (and other) models with additional data and display the results in various dashboards. That is the topic of this post. 

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Marc Lankhorst

The Consumerization of Enterprise Architecture: Everyone’s an Architect! 

Enterprise architecture is often perceived as an abstract, conceptual, and somewhat esoteric discipline practiced by ‘high priests’ who provide guidance with their lofty ‘architecture principles.’ It’s true that architects are often concerned with overarching, cross-cutting concerns that are not always visible to the people ‘in the trenches,’ but this view of enterprise architecture is misguided at best and increasingly misses the mark.  

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Marc Lankhorst

Three Key Techniques for Managing Your Stakeholders

Stakeholder management

Everyone remotely involved with enterprise architecture and similar disciplines knows the importance of knowing your stakeholders. Stakeholder management is a key technique in EA and many methods, including TOGAF, stress its importance. But there is more to management than keeping individual stakeholders happy. In this blog post, I want to introduce three techniques that not only help you ensure stakeholder satisfaction, but also make good use of stakeholders and their influence in achieving business goals. 

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Marc Lankhorst

7 Applications of the Business Model Canvas

In an earlier post we introduced the Business Model Canvas™ and discussed pros and cons. We see the pros are far bigger than the cons and many of the cons mentioned are relatively easy to compensate. But in what occasion can you apply the canvas? Read more

Marc Lankhorst

Cyber Security 5 Steps to Stay Safe in a Dangerous World

Cybersecurity threats are ever increasing. It is sometimes said there are two kinds of organizations: those who know they have been breached, and those who don’t know it yet. To mitigate the risk and damage associated with cybersecurity, it’s important to know how to assess these risks and improve your defenses via security-by-design. It’s also important to plan for what to do if (and when) things do go sideways. 

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Marc Lankhorst

Transparency: Key Foundation for Change

In modern enterprises, change is no longer a simple, top-down affair. All levels of the organization need to be involved, and everyone from shop-floor employees to the CEO need to work on local improvements to business processes. Lean projects and agile product development teams must rapidly innovate digital environments, strategists need to invent and experiment with new business models, project and program portfolio managers have to decide on investment allocations, and those responsible for domains like risk management and regulatory compliance have to do their part. This “all hands on deck” approach requires enterprise-wide transparency and visibility of plans, structures, opportunities and constraints.

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Marc Lankhorst

7 Key Strategy Views in Enterprise Studio (part 2)

In my previous blog post, I described how Enterprise Studio supports the Business Model Canvas, Ecosystem maps, Balanced Scorecards including SWOT, PESTEL and Five Forces analysis, and heatmaps to highlight salient information for your organization. Now, I want to focus on more advanced views and analyses that help you evaluate the viability of your strategy and business models and then take steps towards their implementation.

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Marc Lankhorst

Powerful Analysis Techniques (6) – Financial Analysis

In my previous post, I discussed how you can analyze the business and technical value of your applications, and how architecture models are key in calculating metrics such as the business criticality or strategic value of applications. In this post, I want to focus on financial analysis, and in particular on cost models.

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Marc Lankhorst

Powerful Analysis Techniques (5) – Business and Technical Value Analysis

In the previous installment in this blog series, we looked into planning and analyzing change in the enterprise by linking the life cycles of elements such as applications and projects. But how do you decide what to do with, for example, your application landscape? Which applications need to be improved, re-platformed, functionally upgraded, or phased out?

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Marc Lankhorst

The Business Architect’s Toolbox: An Introduction

In recent years, we see the audience and attention for business architecture steadily increase. A business architecture provides a business-oriented abstraction of the enterprise in its ecosystem, which helps the organization in decision-making and direction-setting. This maturation of the business architecture discipline makes the role of model-based support for design, analysis and decision-making also increasingly important. In this series of posts we will introduce you to useful techniques for business architecture modeling and how they are supported by Enterprise Studio. Read more

Marc Lankhorst

7 Powerful Analysis Techniques to Get More Business Value from Your Models

Strategists, architects, process experts, software developers, data managers and other professionals involved in changing the enterprise often put substantial effort in creating all kinds of useful models of their designs. In many cases, such business models, enterprise architecture models, business process models, software models, data models and more are only used to specify some design, i.e., to describe what should be built. But there is much more value to be had from these models, by using powerful analysis techniques to create new insights. Read more

Marc Lankhorst

How enterprise models contribute to successfully completing a merger, acquisition or divestiture

Organizations involved in major strategic changes such as mergers, acquisitions and divestitures often focus mostly on the financial and market aspects of the change. What is the impact on your market share? How can you increase buying power from your suppliers? What cost savings can be realized by exploiting synergies? Read more

Marc Lankhorst

8 Steps Enterprise Architects Can Take to Deal with GDPR

In my previous blog post, I described the new EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) that will go into effect in May 2018, and I outlined its profound effects on organizations, not just in Europe but around the globe. This regulation, and related EU Directives such as the ePrivacy Directive and the Network and Information System Security (NIS) Directive, force organizations to rethink how they deal with personal, privacy-sensitive data. In this blog, I want to address the steps you can take as an architect to help your organization comply with these regulations.

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Henry Franken

Strategic Use of Business Models: Strategic Management

The term “strategy” is perhaps one of the most misused, and misunderstood concepts in business literature. In this series of blog posts, we refer to strategy as positioning the firm with respect to its environment. We endeavor to answer the questions: how can we (a) improve the process of strategic management through the use of models, and (b) improve the execution/implementation of strategies with Enterprise Architecture Management?

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Peter Matthijssen

Change the Way You Handle Change

Organizations have always had to adapt in order to stay relevant, but in today’s fast-paced market, change is more necessary than ever. The ‘Digital Enterprise’ requires major business transformations, delivered at speed. The ‘unfreeze-change-refreeze’ model, reasoning from a stable current to a desired future state, no longer applies. Read more

Marc Lankhorst

The Value of Enterprise Architecture in Managing Risk, Compliance and Security

In this blog post, we discuss the value of an integrated approach to managing risk, compliance and security in the enterprise, using enterprise architecture as a backbone.

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Marc Lankhorst

Application Portfolio Management: Towards Value-Driven Architecting

Many organizations with large legacy application landscapes can no longer postpone a major overhaul of their IT. But how do you avoid creating tomorrow’s legacy today all over again? And how do you spend your IT budget in the most sensible way? Next to appropriate design and development practices (e.g. enterprise architecture, agile and DevOps, as we addressed in our previous blog) you need to manage your application portfolio as a whole, to decide where it is most important to invest.

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Marc Lankhorst

Enterprise Architecture: Key to Successful Business Transformations

In a recent article by McKinsey, they eloquently argued the importance of enterprise architecture for digital transformations. But they also provide some important criticism of the state of practice. To be really effective at supporting digital transformations, many enterprise architecture practices need to change their behavior.

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