What is Enterprise Architecture’s purpose?

Enterprise Architecture’s purpose is often to help a business in the following ways:

  • To optimize fragmented processes (both manual and automated) into an integrated environment that is responsive to change and supportive of the delivery of the business strategy. e.g. The rapid growth of Dell has led it to be a multi-national company which provides regional specific hardware, infrastructure and IT services and solutions .It ended up with unique manufacturing facilities, regional order management systems, and different operating processes and systems throughout the world. In order to achieve its corporate objectives, Dell needed to consolidating multi-national systems to improve efficiency, reduce costs and enforce common standards.
  • To create a map of IT assets and business processes and a set of governance principles that drive an ongoing discussion about business strategy and how it can be expressed through IT.g. When Syngenta was formed by the merger of Novartis and AstraZeneca’s agribusinesses, there were two separate IT groups-one was technically focused and the other was strategically focused. Enterprise Architecture’s purpose to help the company to simplify and lower the cost of IT, provide standard governance, support key applications such as SAP and Microsoft and present one face to the customer.
  • To ensure that an organization’s IT investments are closely aligned with business goals and processes so that limited IT resources are allocated to areas of highest impact on organizational performance.g. Walt Disney wanted to achieve the right balance between IT efficiency and business innovation to have a competitive advantage.
  • To provide a blueprint which is employed by each and every stakeholder for own work purposes. For instance, National Strategy for Police Information Systems used Enterprise Architecture’s purpose is to provide a high degree of interoperability demanded by the business, both between forces and between applications, both intra and inter force in order to reduce cross-boundary effects.
  • To provide a key tool in managing the outsourcing of service delivery. For instance, private sector service providers were required to use a framework provided by The Department of Social Security (DSS) (United Kingdom). Enterprise Architecture’s purpose is to help the department in capitalising on their experience, expertise, and self-financing abilities and play a greater role in the development of the Department’s new IS/IT systems .
  • To avoid fragmented and duplicated applications and technology platform, for instance, to help manage IAG NZ‘s complex systems environment, Enterprise Architecture was designed to better understand and manage their applications, infrastructure, and interfaces. The overriding goal was to have “a single point of truth” about the design and dependencies between technology components . And Department of social security (United Kingdom) used the architecture framework to have a single logical data repository capable of supporting all of the Department’s core business activities. Framework helped in reducing duplication of stored data and, thus costs to the taxpayer and the potential for fraudulent claims. It also ensured that information common to different benefits only needed to be captured once, so providing an improved service to the public.
  • Help an enterprise to stay agile and to solve the problems that it faces e.g. Tesco revamped it Enterprise Architecture to scale and build and execution platform to support its worldwide growth and have a consistent and repeatable process for defining solution architectures .It also helped in guiding decisions and investments.Agility will also help reduce the time it takes to implement new solutions.

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