Enterprise Architecture


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Enterprise Architecture

  1. 1. State of Illinois Enterprise Architecture 06-2005 NASCIO Recognition Awards | 2005 –State of Illinois Enterprise Architecture Governor Rod Blagojevich ordered the consolidation of Information Technology and Telecommunications across all Agencies, boards, and commissions under direct control of the Executive Branch in 2003. The program to accomplish this was called the IT and Telecom Rationalization initiative. Rationalization refers to the combined alignment, consolidation, and standardization of the environment. At the time the IT Rationalization program was initiated 46 Agencies were included. As the approach was developed, RFPs were issued for assistance with the Rationalization projects. The Rationalization projects included development of an IT master plan, hardware, software, and telecom rationalization, PIM consolidation, workforce rationalization and cost recovery. In order to manage hardware and software rationalization and to provide a means to evolve to a managed state after the Rationalization initiative, an Enterprise Architecture practice, and IT Governance were established. This was initiated by the State of Illinois transition team, and then embellished by the vendors after the contracts from the RFP were awarded. It is our opinion that an Enterprise Architecture practice must include not only an Enterprise Architecture framework, but also a Governance process to assure the framework is populated and maintained, and that the net effect of the EA is to align business and technology to a strategic plan that leverages managed Standards. The State of Illinois Enterprise Architecture framework is based upon the Federal Enterprise Architecture Framework (FEAF). Local domain owners and subject matter experts created the taxonomies utilized within the framework. The Governance process consists of seven sub-processes that are managed by an automated workflow that tracks initiatives as they develop to a point that the project budget is committed. Five of these processes are directly related to managing the IT and Telecom application portfolio. Two are directed toward Standards management. The Enterprise Architecture database is both maintained by, and provides guidance throughout the IT planning process. The combined Governance and EA practice provide both consistency and transparency to the process. The Governance and EA initiatives began in March 2004. At this time the EA framework is in place and the taxonomies populated. Architectural blueprints are in progress, and approximately 100 projects are in the workflow. We are ready to begin post implementation reviews on approximately 7 projects. The increased scrutiny and attention to proper requirements gathering, and Standards deployment has reduced the number of frivolous requests by almost 50% as compared to where we were last year at this time. The quality of RFPs and RFIs generated by the State has improved due to the increased attention to requirements development and subsequent enhanced business alignment. It has also provided a method to handle requests that fall outside of Standards in a manner that will not burden the shared services model that is being deployed as a result of IT Rationalization. Page 1 6/8/2010
  2. 2. State of Illinois Enterprise Architecture 06-2005 State of Illinois Enterprise Architecture Description of project, length of time in operation The State of Illinois EA (Enterprise Architecture) work began in Q1 2004 as part of the statewide IT Rationalization initiative. It has steadily evolved until the present, and will continue to evolve in an organic fashion in conjunction with the IT and Telecom Governance activity . The EA repository is the database utilized to manage the EA reference models (BRM) Business Reference Model, (ARM) Application Reference Model, and (TRM) Technical Reference Model. At this time the TRM is complete, and is utilized as the basis for all technology architecture management, including Standards management. The BRM and ARM are being populated and provide the basis for identifying reuse opportunities and guiding business alignment. The typical methodology of an IT transformation consists of the following steps: • assess the Current state, • identify a Future state, • perform a gap analysis, • develop a plan to optimize efforts to mitigate gaps. Our team does not advocate a Future state. This implies another plateau that will cause the need to repeat the exercise after some period. Our methodology replaces ‘identify a Future state’ with ‘establish a Managed state”. This implies that repeatable processes, in the form of Governance, will be in place to assure continuous alignment of business and technology; as well as a continuous evolution of technology and Standards. The Enterprise Architecture framework and architectural blueprints guide the alignment. The net result is that the portfolio does not age, but continues to refresh. The State of Illinois Enterprise Architecture framework consists of a family of interrelated reference models initially derived from the FEAF (Federal Enterprise Architecture Framework). Reference models are taxonomies utilized to develop the functional areas that must be aligned into searchable categories that resolve to fundamental building blocks or services. The models are instantiated in a relational database that supports the taxonomies, and establishes relationships across the models in order that the fundamental business and technology alignment functions can be represented. Each entity in the EAdb (Enterprise Architecture database) includes the relevant metadata for the entity. At this time the BRM (Business Reference Model), ARM (Application Reference Model), and TRM (Technical Reference Model) are in use. The IRM (Information Reference Model) is intended to augment the ARM by associating common data requirements. It is also intended to be a repository for XML schema. The ORM (Operations Reference Model) is under development as the Shared Services capability of the IT Rationalization is further defined. This will provide the basis for service level management. The IRM and ORM have been deferred as a matter of priority. Page 2 6/8/2010
  3. 3. State of Illinois Enterprise Architecture 06-2005 The BRM taxonomy begins with the highest-level business domains the State Agencies perform. These are: • Public safety • Health and human services • Revenue and Financial • Transportation and environment Each of the 46 Agencies of the Executive branch is mapped into one of these Domains. The next layer identifies business Sub-domains. Sub-domains are further expanded into Functions performed within the Sub-domain. Finally, Functions are further broken down into Sub- functions. The fundamental BRM taxonomy is comprised of Domains, Sub-domains, Functions, and Sub-functions. Information to populate this model was gathered by a series of interviews and surveys conducted throughout the Rationalization projects. We feel this information is approximately 70% complete at this time, but through IT Governance it continues to improve. Metadata within the BRM includes COOP (Continuity Of Operation) and COG (Continuity of Government) requirements; as these are related more to the business sub-function than they are to the applications that support the sub-function itself. The ARM is the inventory of Applications that are related/linked to the BRM Sub-functions. Metadata managed in the ARM includes information describing ownership of the application, operational schedule, initial investment, in-service date, lifecycle status and lifecycle date. Application lifecycle depicts that status from the time an application enters the Governance process. This assures that even applications under consideration can be correlated to proposed initiatives. The application lifecycle status includes: • Business alignment- First Governance gate, facilitates early reuse opportunities • Solution Proposal- Second Governance gate- validates Non-functional Requirements • Detail Design- Third Governance gate- presents detail design in terms of development and implementation Standards, and TCO/ROI model • Post-Implementation review-Fourth Governance gate- Validates tool/product deployment as well as project schedule and budget, and whether or not the project is trending toward the proposed business benefit • Exception Management- Fifth Governance gate (optional)- provides opportunity for project sponsor to petition an exception to Standards based upon business value. Another relationship is maintained to describe interfaces across applications. This information clarifies interdependency of applications and business functions. Finally, a channel relationship is maintained that qualifies the constituent interface to the application. The ARM is approximately 70% populated at this time. Between the BRM and ARM we can determine which business functions are supported by which applications. This information can be utilized to identify duplicate application functionality. This is always checked proactively through IT the Governance processes. When requests are initiated to create a new business application, Governance requires creation of a project Charter and functional requirements. The project Charter and functional requirements are examined by Page 3 6/8/2010
  4. 4. State of Illinois Enterprise Architecture 06-2005 the EPMO (Enterprise Program Management Office) and tested against the BRM taxonomy. If there are existing applications linked to that BRM Sub-function entry, a re-use opportunity is flagged. The value of early identification of reuse opportunities is that minimum time is wasted before a reuse opportunity is discovered. This provides practical efficiency; as well, as manages personal investment in an idea that can later lead to territorial conflicts. In addition, routine mining of duplication can be accomplished to seek redundant applications by running simple reports. These reports can be utilized to trigger consolidation activities. Further, we can identify redundancy and duplication of function across business entities (Agencies). This information may be utilized to provide hints toward fundamental organizational alignment opportunities. The TRM describes all of the technology deployed across the enterprise. Technology is characterized in a taxonomy that identifies Domain, Sub-domain, and Building Block. There are three major domains. These are subdivided into Sub-domains, and finally Building blocks. Building Blocks are the lowest descriptive layer; all technology products deployed within the enterprise are assigned to a Building Block. The Building Block contains metadata that identifies the product-by-product name, version and platform. These three identifiers are necessary to uniquely identify each product instance. Additional information includes: Domain Owner (person in charge of the particular TRM domain), SME (Subject Matter Expert), lifecycle, lifecycle date, review date. The Domain Owner is assigned as an escalation point to assure proper maintenance of the domain. The SME is assigned as the technical expert that will advise when it is necessary to migrate to a new version of a product, or to take other lifecycle related action. Seven lifecycle states have been defined in order to manage the evolution of a product from the point it is announced by a vendor until it is retired. These states are: • Target- A new product has been announced that the SME feels will be of interest. This state affords opportunity to project future-state blueprints. • POC- A Proof of Concept is underway with a product. • Standard- product recommended when a need for this service emerges. • Supported- intended to be a transitional state toward product retirement. • Not-supported- Agencies running applications utilizing products within this state bear all extraordinary expense associated with retaining the product • Retired- self explanatory • Legacy- During a transition such as the State is undertaking there will be a time when there is gross duplication of products and services, and it is not always simple to identify what should be eliminated and what should stay. A series of initiatives will be launched against Legacy products to target the largest opportunities for conversion and elimination. A moratorium period will be assigned to perform the transition. After the moratorium one of the other lifecycle states will have been assigned and this state will disappear. Page 4 6/8/2010
  5. 5. State of Illinois Enterprise Architecture 06-2005 Transitioning through these states is managed through the IT Governance. Formal processes are documented and in place to introduce a change in lifecycle state, and to manage the transition. This is necessary to assure products are not stranded within the organization. The Building Blocks within the TRM are linked to the applications in the ARM that are dependent upon them. The applications within ARM are linked to the business sub-functions within the BRM. This completes the technology relationship which aids in understanding the impact of Standard-setting and application portfolio migration upon the business. This relationship provides the basis for better impact planning when a new Standard is declared. This facilitates proactive retirement of products. The final artifact of the EA is the blueprint. The blueprint provides a design template from which standardized configurations can be developed. The EA blueprint is a simple mechanism designed as a series of SQL statements that are pre-built and maintained by the Enterprise Architects. The SQL queries are directed toward selecting numerous building blocks that have been intentionally combined by the Enterprise Architects to represent a particular configuration. These queries include lifecycle status; thus, enabling either a current design pattern, or a future or target design pattern. For example, if we determine a standardized SQL server template requires the following building block components: Workgroup Wintel server, Wintel server OS, Workgroup RDBMS, file system, a query can be constructed as follows: select from PRODUCTS where building block equals Workgroup server OR server OS OR Workgroup RDBMS OR filesystem, AND lifecycle status EQUALS Standard AND platform EQUALS Wintel This would result in a bill of materials describing which versions of which hardware and software should be combined to develop a Standard workgroup database server. Using this method avoids having to continuously update the blueprints as they will automatically reflect the correct products each time the query is run based upon assigned lifecycle states. The database that describes these relationships is available for all teams to view. The SME or application owner through Governance processes maintains individual Standards six and seven. Significance to the improvement of the operation of government If one acknowledges the combination of Governance and Enterprise Architecture, the significance is efficiency and uniformity of process. This leads to operational transparency, and a state from which meaningful metrics can be gathered to initiate further improvement. The EA framework and Governance place this part of our operation at an unaudited CMM level 3. Page 5 6/8/2010
  6. 6. State of Illinois Enterprise Architecture 06-2005 Another benefit is that the EA model can provide the basis for effective Shared Services; as people, process, and technology become more portable and sharable. Shared Services reduce cost by leveraging common frameworks. This can translate to lowest cost because you have adequate planning information, and highest efficiency. Highest efficiency leads to greater agility to meet constituent needs. Benefits realized by service recipients, taxpayers, agency or state As the State of Illinois moves forward with IT Rationalization the Enterprise Architecture framework provides the model for future investment by exposing redundancy in business function, applications, and technologies. This provides the information necessary to avoid redundancy and leverage existing infrastructure and applications. For example we have determined that State of Illinois has over 20 permutations of email systems. The State spends nearly $10M/year on desktop end user computing and PIM software, and $9M+ on desktop hardware. Information from the EAdb confirms that we can reduce these expenditures to approximately $6M/ year each, or from ~$19M to ~$12M annually. PIM consolidation is currently underway to leverage this cost reduction. Most Enterprise Architects claim that implementation of an Enterprise Architecture practice can reduce the cost of infrastructure in a previously unmanaged environment by a conservative 15%. We have reduced the IT budget from ~$660M in 2003 to $550 in 2004, and project 2006 at ~$510M. These sustaining cost reductions are made possible, assuming steady-state operation, by utilizing information from the EA to consolidate products, resulting in leverage to negotiate better VPAs (Volume Purchase Agreements), and by eliminating redundant and superfluous products and services. Reducing redundancy permits staff to develop deeper knowledge on fewer technologies; thus improving operating efficiency. Any new initiatives will take full advantage of reuse of business process, applications, and Standards; therefore embedded investments will be completely leveraged as the State evolves its business operating model and technology platforms. This assures the lowest possible cost going forward. Return on investment Investment in the EA practice has been minimal; as development of the database was local, and the framework was developed by the CIO. This resulted in near zero capital investment (Server on which the EAdb operates is shared). Consultants employed for IT Rationalization were redirected by the CIO to utilize the EA framework as the repository for their findings and recommendations; as opposed to stopping at spreadsheets and powerpoint presentations. Illinois has matrixed 5 individuals as the State Enterprise Architects- they have full time assignments in addition to their EA obligations. Page 6 6/8/2010
  7. 7. State of Illinois Enterprise Architecture 06-2005 The net is we have redirected what could have been sunk cost into process that has already driven over $100M out of the State of Illinois IT budget. Page 7 6/8/2010