Santana Mariscal, who serves as Vice President of Programming for Execs in Tech, presented a case study on using Business Architecture to Drive IT Investment. The Execs in Tech August luncheon held at Liberty Kitchen in Houston and was attended by 25 Execs in Tech members and guests. Santana’s case study highlighted how a Houston energy firm used Business Architecture as the foundation to identify $3.5 million in savings and help manage application portfolios.
Software portfolios can get messy when the software is purchased without a clear understanding of how it will impact the entire Enterprise. Enterprise Architecture and specifically Business Architecture can be used to help create a common language that the IT and Business stakeholder can use to correctly drive innovation and operational improvements. Without Business Architecture software redundancy, siloed systems, and technical debt is more likely to grow. Also, the “business-as-usual” mindset can lead to legacy applications that are end of life and expensive to maintain.
Business Architecture is about aligning the strategic objectives of the company with tactical demands, said Santana. Establishing Business Architecture by aligning applications, information, and technology will help organizations better understand business value and underlying technology health. Using agreed upon metrics to illustrate the impact of each application, organizations can decide which technologies to continue to invest in and which new high-impact applications need to be acquired. Further the exercise identifies redundant and low-impact applications can be decommissioned.
Santana also presented The Open Group Architecture Framework (TOGAF) which was the framework that his team followed during this Business Architecture exercise. The result, besides a slimmed down software portfolio, was a software roadmap aligned with the firm’s growth strategy, it also produced an ongoing governance model that can manage current software lifecycles as well as drive new application investment.