Back home after an inspiring and entertaining EA & BPM conference. There was way too much going on to wrap it up in a short blog post, but here are some themes that stick with me after the talks and informal discussions.
Value proposition & strategy
An important part of enterprise and business architecture and business process management is about making the connection with corporate strategy and an enterprise’s value proposition. It will not surprise you that customer experience is playing an important role here. Thinking outside-in, stepping into the customer’s shoes and looking at his process instead of ours is a first step.
Once we connect the customer needs with our value proposition and strategy, we must link them to the internals of the organisation. At this point we should, for example, define which business decisions must be strictly defined and governed and which should allow some freedom. This way, we can give each customer a customised experience where needed without renouncing our corporate identity.
Still lacking a clear and agreed upon definition of these three disciplines with quite some overlap (EA, BA, BPM), a new role emerged: the make-it-right-for-the-customer role. Now there’s something I can vote for :-).
For us architects and analysts, modelling and analysing have been high on our task list for many years. But to really influence and leverage how a company and enterprise (and the people therein) works, we really must pay more attention to culture. We may even need a culture architecture. Truly aligning the purpose of an enterprise with the passion and self motivation of its people could be a huge step forward. A good employee experience is a prerequisite for a good customer experience.
It might not be so easy to do on a corporate scale, but we have an obvious starting point: we architects should start architecting our own teams. Bring in the right mix of skills and characters, and off you go. Heck, a well architected EA team could perhaps have less trouble explaining what it does and what it’s value is to the rest of the organisation. Who knows, it may even create more value.
The search for simplicity: an ongoing challenge
There was also a general agreement on the need for simpler models and simpler messages. Keep the hard core architecture inside the team and bring some more art outside. Firmitas, utilitas and venustas, remember? I certainly hope to see more of this approach in the future. It will make us better architects.
More interesting quotes and thoughts on twitter. I’m already looking forward to next year’s edition.