Maturity Models and Enterprise Architecture

Posted: 17-Dec-12 3:01PM by Heather Wilcox

Related Categories: EA maturity, Establishing Enterprise Architecture Capability, Maturity Models, TOGAF Maturity

Architecture Maturity and TOGAF

Enterprise Architecture requires various architectural process areas and capabilities to be in place in order to operate effectively. Based on the transformation activity and maturity levels currently in the organisation, the amount of effort and focus of the enterprise architecture effort required varies for per organisation, based on their priorities and needs.  Essentially, the maturity model must constantly evolve based on business strategy, drivers and organisational needs.

The following picture highlights the main areas central to effective enterprise architecture.

 

Enterprise Architecture Capability Maturity Model
 

TOGAF advocates the use of maturity models as a tool to assess the current status of an organisation (within a predefined scope and process area(s)).  The clear mappings of the process maturity levels both at current and future states make it an ideal tool to communicate the planned roadmap.


By creating a simple Excel spread sheet analysing Enterprise Architecture Areas, a radar graph can be generated to show current and existing target states – along with competitors or benchmark scores for the area in question.


Graphical representation of the maturity levels can be easily generated via excel:-

Using Excel to map enterprise architecture maturity

Maturity models usually define the characteristics and behaviours shown at the various process levels. The current and future desired states can also be clearly communicated via the maturity model.


Maturity models can systematically assess evolving capabilities – and by analysing the business strategy and business needs can pinpoint process maturity areas and/or capabilities that require attention.   By using maturity models a clear plan can be defined to show how the business can successfully transition to the target model.  The organization can compare itself with other companies in the industry, as well as  in the national and international environment, allowing benchmarking against  a wider environment.

Converting capability maturity model excel figures into Enterprise architecture Radar Graph
The above diagram categorises the typical enterprise architecture capabilities.  As organisations plan their activities to improve their enterprise architecture capabilities, the Maturity levels can be assessed by using the maturity model. 


By understanding areas that are currently underperforming and/or identifying capability areas that are insufficient to enable effective transition to the future state, the current and target maturity levels can be charted and road mapped in line with business needs and business strategy .  The activities of the planned work can be prioritised as required and focus should be honed in on areas that will improve performance, quality and capabilities in line with business drivers.


For example, an organisation may conclude, after assessing their project management and programme management capabilities,that their current project management capabilities are sufficient – however their architecture procurement capability is insufficient for the transformation effort that is being planned.


They may feel that unless work is done to improve this capability, future architectural work will be at risk.  The planned architectural work and priorities become more apparent as the maturity assessment and analysis progresses, due to participants being provided with insight into the business capabilities required to achieve their business goals and objectives. 


It is the enterprise architecture team, collaborating and guided by the CIO (Chief Information Officer) and key business stakeholders, who will produce the architecture roadmap and target capabilities.  The Enterprise architecture strategy and architecture roadmap will give a clear indication of the work and capabilities to achieve the target operating model.   The CIO (Chief Information Officer), works closely with top management to translate business strategy into an aligned, supporting IT strategy. 


Capability Model

The Chief Enterprise Architect and team will work with the stakeholders to elaborate this effort and assess how the transformation and merging strategy affects the enterprise architecture current landscape, processes and people.  The maturity model tool can be used to support the analysis and assessment and consequently be a useful communication tool to show the business where the main focus of the effort is required.
 

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