Enterprise architecture must take a leadership role in IT strategy and service delivery.


Attempts to align IT strategy with an abstract business vision or strategy are doomed to failure according Butler Group.

In its latest report, "IT Strategy and Architecture--Creating an Enterprise Model to Support IT Strategic Planning", Butler Group says that in order to improve competitiveness, organisations must urgently address the growing dislocation between the business requirements and IT deliverables. This, it says, is directly impacting the enterprise's ability to make quick, accurate decisions and is causing slow implementation of the IT strategy. The gap between IT capability and business needs cannot be allowed to continue. Instead, the adoption of an end-to-end architectural approach and the development of an enterprise model can help with IT strategy planning and execution.

Enterprise architecture is a comprehensive framework used to manage and align an organisation's Information Technology (IT) assets, people, operations, and projects with its operational characteristics. It defines how information and technology will support the business operations and provide benefit for it. It is an important company asset that has to be managed and updated on an ongoing basis to ensure relevance is maintained.

"To successfully adopt Enterprise Architecture there has to be complete buy-in across the entire organisation, with an understanding of the allocation of the roles and responsibilities. Technology and business areas within the enterprise must work together to ensure that the architecture keeps in line with the strategic objectives of the company and adequately reflects the IT services available now and planned for the future", says Mark Blowers, Enterprise Architectures Practice Director and co-author of the study. "The belief is that Enterprise Architecture and engaging with senior management to define a top-level business architecture and enterprise model has become a necessity for any organisation wishing to effectively interpret IT strategy, and successfully utilise technology as an enabler for business agility and change."

To remain competitive, organisations must urgently address the growing dislocation between strategy and IT deliverables

To provide maximum flexibility an IT strategy must be developed that is guided by Enterprise Architecture, and which is supported by a services-centric approach, and has its foundation in a common platform. This interlinked approach and use of a layered architecture shields the inherent...

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