Norsk Hydro: Gets visibility from strategy to execution

Norsk Hydro

Gets visibility from strategy to execution

Bizzdesign makes the impact of change transparent, offering a robust platform to implement, execute, and communicate our IT strategy and initiatives effectively.

Armin Auth, Head of Enterprise Architecture at Norsk Hydro ASA

Country: Global company, headquarters in Norway
Industry: Hydro is an aluminium and renewable energy company, offering products and solutions throughout the entire value chain of aluminium
Company size: > 32,000 employees
Revenue: > USD 18 billion


  • Ensuring success by reducing complexity
  • Tracking the progress of implementation
  • Making the impact of change transparent
  • Increasing collaboration between IT and the business
  • Working smarter by reusing existing materials
  • Gaining expertise from Bizzdesign’s consultancy services
  • Communicating the IT strategy effectively

Norsk Hydro ASA is a global aluminium and renewable energy company founded over a century ago in Norway. The company has 32,000 employees and operates in 140 locations in 40 countries. Hydro aims to create a more viable society by developing natural resources into products and solutions in innovative and efficient ways.

The challenge – Why Hydro needed a sustainable strategy?

Hydro developed a ten-year strategy to strengthen its leadership position in the production of low-carbon aluminium and to diversify and grow its business in new energy. The IT department then subsequently developed an information and technology (I&T) strategy. They call this an I&T rather than an IT strategy, to highlight the importance of data and technology as differentiators.

The I&T strategy derives from Hydro’s and the business areas’ overall business strategy and was developed based on a Gartner framework. Hydro’s IT team defines their strategy as ‘a business-orientated planning and execution framework for investments and operations’.

The enterprise architecture team was tasked to track and follow the I&T strategy execution over time. This team plays a crucial role by actively engaging with all business areas on a daily basis, regardless of location. For instance, architects actively contribute to the cyber security program to facilitate a modern workplace and support the digital strategy driving new renewable energy and battery manufacturing initiatives.

The team wanted to model the strategy in an enterprise architecture platform rather than using a collection of Microsoft® PowerPoint presentations and Excel spreadsheets, which couldn’t sync and would be discarded after three years. The selected platform would serve as a communication tool to track and manage strategic actions from implementation to execution. In summary, Hydro required a platform to:

  • Link the I&T strategy to their operational plans
  • Maintain the strategy efficiently
  • Enable communication and collaboration around the strategy

The team selected Bizzdesign from the shortlisted platforms because it met all their requirements and had a robust architecture modeling approach compared to other vendors.

The solution – How a modeled strategy gives visibility of the entire IT landscape

Following the deployment of Bizzdesign Horizzon, the enterprise architecture team modeled the I&T strategy in the platform. They used the Coach View to define key activities and plans and take stakeholders through the different phases and visualize the three planning horizons of the strategy. They used the Coach view to create two interfaces.

The first, in Enterprise Studio, catered to architects using standard design languages like ArchiMate. The second, in Bizzdesign Horizzon, facilitated “storytelling” and collaboration with stakeholders such as initiative owners and the C-level. It allowed deep dives into projects, tracking their execution through various views and dashboards.

Additionally, Hydro has developed several dashboards to monitor and understand progress, such as tracking the strategic actions of the operational plan (e.g., projects, results, and outcomes). The team emphasizes that the main advantage of Bizzdesign Horizzon is that they can visualize complex strategic actions. Additionally, they appreciate the ease and simplicity of generating tailored dashboards for different stakeholders within 30 minutes, enabling better meeting preparation.

In the future, the team wants to facilitate organization-wide agnostic discussions regarding the application strategy, utilizing Bizzdesign Horizzon to define change capabilities and design specific outcomes. They plan on expanding the metamodel and linking business capability maps, along with other strategic initiatives, to the model in Enterprise Studio and also to integrate ServiceNow, Azure and their PPM tool Clarity to Bizzdesign Horizzon.

Bizzdesign enables clear visualization of how each initiative contributes to the overall strategy, making it easy to explain and align with stakeholders.”

János Alexa, Senior Enterprise Architect at Norsk Hydro ASA

Key benefits – A linked strategy enables more visibility and better decision-making

Ensuring success by reducing complexity
Hydro is now able to surface dependencies between initiatives. They get an enterprise-wide view of strategy execution, its connection to business and operating models and the impact on key performance indicators.

Making the impact of change transparent
Hydro uses Bizzdesign as a big canvas to model their strategy over time and ensure timely execution. They have full visibility of their entire IT landscape and can drill down into the technical orchestration and see the dependencies of modeling changes.

Increasing collaboration between IT and the business
A single repository of information enables the entire team and stakeholders to access the same information, improving collaboration. This includes approvals by executive governance boards.

Working smarter by reusing existing materials
Every piece in Bizzdesign Horizzon is reusable, so the team doesn’t have to build up anything from scratch at the start of a new initiative. They can, for example, use the ServiceNow integration to populate other fields. They don’t have to build up this integration every time they need information from ServiceNow. This benefit extends to other organizational stakeholders, allowing for easy access and reuse of models and artifacts.

Gaining expertise from Bizzdesign’s consultancy services
Hydro highly appreciates not just the Bizzdesign platform but also the valuable consultancy services provided by the vendor. They mainly found the Business Value Accelerator beneficial in the initial stages of the project, as it facilitated the modeling of the I&T strategy within the platform.

Communicating the IT strategy effectively
Hydro views Bizzdesign Horizzon as a strong communications tool. They value the ability to track the strategic ambitions of the IT strategy over time to track execution.

Bizzdesign Horizzon is an agnostic platform which efficiently handles complexity by integrating various data sources like ServiceNow and Azure to give a comprehensive multi-dimensional perspective of our organization.

János Alexa, Senior Enterprise Architect at Norsk Hydro ASA