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Enterprise Architecture Maturity - why measure it?

With so many frameworks and assessment methods many would ask the question -

Analysis and evaluation of the organisation’s existing enterprise architectures maturity levels will lead to improvements in the organisational effectiveness  if a target roadmap is implemented in line with business goals and drivers. 

Quality checking of the overall enterprise architecture performance can result in:
The Open Group Service Integration Maturity Model  look at seven levels of maturity across several facets (from the business down to infrastructure) and identifies ways to optimise business benefits.   The Open Group Service Integration Maturity Model  uses attributes and criteria to measure the current 'As Is' state of the organisation.
By understanding the goals and drivers of the organisation, the Open Group Service Integration Maturity Model method facilitates the formation of a roadmap.  The roadmap shows incremental steps transitioning from the baseline to the target state.  The roadmap allows the organisation to transform to the future target maturity state supporting the  business obtain their desired goals and outcomes.

The Open Group Service Integration Maturity Model has a matrix in which to categorise and classify an organisations maturity. At the low end of the scale indicates silos – line driven, isolated business process analysis.  The high end of the scales shows organisations that are able to dynamically alter and reconfigure their services in line with business change and drivers.  High maturity organisations have a distinct competitive advantage – they are more easily able to offer new services and capability on demand – thus enabling these mature organisations to capitalise on new demand and obtain market share.

 Open Group Service Integration Maturity Model matrix components – horizontal axis
OSIMM horizontal axis

These categorisations are shown along the horizontal axis of the OSIMM matrix

Open Group Service Integration Maturity Model matrix components – horizontal axis

The OSIMM matrix adds a further dimension when analysing organisation maturity
Open Group Service Integration Maturity Model matrix components – horizontal axis

OSIMM vertical axis

These dimensions are shown along the vertical OSIMM axis

A targeted analysis of enterprise architecture maturity across the framework highlights weaknesses; any improvement required can be performed incrementally, by business priority.  It is important to analyse the organisations maturity in an organisational context.  Business drivers and performance criteria differ between organisations and this must be factored into any assessment. Individual business need to have a clear understanding on their own objectives and desired outcomes required from achieving the increased maturity levels and this ‘vision’ helps form an incremental roadmap of how to get the ‘target’ state.

It is possible that business scenarios and drivers differ in an organisations varied lines of business and functional areas.  The Open Group Service Integration Maturity Model is flexible enough to allow an organisation to target different maturity levels and aspects of the maturity level in order to satisfy the organisational goals.  In some areas streamlined processes may be high priority, whilst in others a shorter time to market for products is critical, in another area with high third party use integration is more immediate. 

Open Group Service Integration Maturity Model maturity assessment analyses and questions the effectiveness of an organisations master data management.  Is the organisation working towards or already achievement an integrated view of management data?  A mature organisation does not necessary require one central repository – it requires a capability to integrate the data giving an accurate management picture on which to base their strategic decisions and monitor performance.   Monitoring business processing and understanding the impact on the services is important – especially in larger organisation who has subcontracted out some of the infrastructure - inability to measure and monitor the subcontractor’s performance is a serious risk and there must be a clear understanding of how the various sub elements of a service contributes to the overall business capability.

Improving enterprise architecture maturity will result in fewer problems with transforming services, a more productive and efficient workforce.  Poorly performed analysis and communication of business produce under optimised solutions impacting the business performance and opportunities for growth.  All these factors affect the organisations Return on Investment.

An uplift of skills capability and improving the maturity of the enterprise architecture capability is a business enabler giving you the opportunity to improve market share and optimise business potential.  Improved performance can assist achieve business improvement goals – these vary per organisation but improved customer communication ( due to a more united, co-ordinated internal capability within the organisation), reduction of administration overhead, rationalisation of processes and de duplication of infrastructure are well understood benefits of mature organisations.


Analysing the maturity of organisational segments enables the organisation to understand how effective transformation is within the organisation.  It helps answer the question - Where are we now? Where do we want to be? and instead of How do we get there? - for transformed services you can objectively assess - Have we got there yet?  The maturity level is ofyten not going to be 100% achived , but it helps to answer the following - If not  100%, how much of an improvement is there, and how much more is required to achieve the business benefits?

 It allows an organisation to understand the segment maturity level and also how supports business goals.  The maturity levels help all levels - individual roles, operational managers, service owners, IT and business managers benchmark services ans set realistic targets for the near, mid and long term goals, which support dynamic services that are designed to support the business goals and long term strategy.

Stakeholders within organisations can relate to hard facts and figures - intangible platitudes on how much a transformed service is improved  are unconvincing.  The objective measurement used within the maturity model allows for consistent bench,martking of services across organsiational segments and helps stakeholders to see the value and contribution of the transformed services.

In summary - it shows how far you have travelled on the Enterprise Architecture roadmap, the business can have confidence in the benchmark measurements - centralised governance and quality can audit and verify the objectivity of the scoring against agreed, documented criteria which are relevant to the specific organisations. The measurements can highlight areas of ecellence and encourage best practice and knowledge sharing across the organisation.

Enterprise Aechitect Projects that excel in a segment area can be anlused to extract best practice and reusable assets deployed elswhere in the organisation.