What are the right tools for Agile Enterprise Architecture?

What are the right tools for Agile Enterprise Architecture?

Author : Alain Boulze - Published date : February 8, 2019

A few months ago, we shared our vision of Agile Enterprise Architecture as a driver of Digital Transformation.

To be efficient, the Enterprise Architecture approach must have the right tools in place. We have conducted a study on how enterprise architecture tools have evolved as Gartner described it in a study published in late 2017.

In light of this publication, listed below are the key factors supporting our stance.

Let’s briefly recall what characterizes an Agile Enterprise Architecture and the main challenges to its implementation.

The Agile Enterprise Architecture is a repository with a shared view of the information systems (IS) understood by all anticipating the scalability of the business services of the company.

Furthermore, support for IS alignment with a constantly evolving profession and facilitator of a collaboration between the teams. And again a vector of production of value analysis and major impacts for the Enterprise IS.

The Agile Enterprise Architecture is co-constructed term encompassing of diversity of teams in terms of expertise, sensibilities and cultures.

Enterprise Architecture breaks the silos and goes beyond its own propensity to fall back on oneself to provide all stakeholders involved in the Enterprise Information System with adequate information for decision-making in line with the strategic challenges of the organization.

What essential features and what critical qualities do you expect from enterprise architecture tools? What criteria should you evaluate in order to implement an Agile Enterprise Architecture approach?

The first group of criteria is those that contribute to a rapid implementation of the tool. In Gartner’s report this is identified as a criterion (reference to the study conducted in 2017 ” Critical Capabilities for Enterprise Architecture Tools “) through one of the three major use cases of an Enterprise Architecture tool “Speeding Time to Value“. The rapidity of the appropriation and control of the tool, the ease of its use and its access are the major expected functionalities on this axis, as much as the faculty of the editor to facilitate the first phase of collaboration and to accelerate the formation of the team to the tool. The cost of acquiring the tool and the skills required is, of course, a structuring element in rapid implementation of the tool.

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The second set of criteria relates to the tool’s ability to produce high value-added deliverables that perfectly meet the objectives of the Enterprise Architecture and facilitates decision making as part of the Enterprise IT strategy. Delivering the strategic artifacts of the Enterprise Architecture quickly with the required quality represents a major challenge and a decisive key to the adoption and success of the Enterprise Architecture process itself. In the same study of 2017, Gartner refers to these two key features through the two other major use cases of an Enterprise Architecture tool ” Creating Signature-Ready Actionable Deliverables ” and ” Making Smarter Decisions Faster “. It’s important to note, that these capabilities must be fully collaborative for shared ownership and maximum dissemination of the Enterprise Architecture. As such, a “Data Driven” approach will be easier for all stakeholders to understand than the more traditional and expert “Model Driven” approach.

To these core features of the Enterprise Architecture, are added the qualities of innovation and technological openness to the tool: secure deployment in the Cloud, underlying technologies for data management and storage “Graph Oriented Or “Elastic Oriented”, tools for personalization and integration via powerful “Query” or “Natural Language Processing” languages ​​and open APIs.

The third class of criteria is the attractiveness of the tool from the point of view of the market. Increasingly more than the commercial conditions and the acquired references which of course is necessary to evaluate, it is also important to appreciate the dynamism of the ecosystem built around the publisher and the product, as well as the vision of the evolution of the tool and its future roadmap.

These elements of characterization have led us to highlight two remarkable tools. The first one, the BiZZdesign Enterprise Studio & HoriZZon suite, being a leader in the market, offering a first-class offering against other market leaders, while the second being Ardoq, a newcomer in the market, emerging as innovative and differentiating.

Where BiZZdesign positions the Enterprise Architecture and its tool as vectors of the disruption, Ardoq places them as vectors of the “digital roadmap“.

BiZZdesign demonstrates a know-how and an offer favorable to organizations who have reached the first degree of maturity in Enterprise Architecture along with wishing to improve it to support the new services of the Enterprise. On the other hand, Ardoq offers a simple and fast access environment and of use to experiment an approach of Architecture of Enterprise facilitating the fast evolutions of the Company towards new models.

There is a strong consensusby the crucial and innovative contribution of BiZZdesign and Ardoq in the implementation of an Agile Enterprise Architecture. We have decided and initiated a partnership with these two companies, which will strengthen us to base our Agile Entreprise Architecture offer and declining it to our customers requesting an accelerator in the evolution or implementation of an Enterprise Architecture framework.

Which benefits and concrete results will be achieved with our customers thanks to our offer embedding the tools of BiZZdesign and Ardoq, this is what we propose to share in a future publication !

Find out more about our partner Ardoq here!