It’s the process stupid!
This morning I attended a very interesting Architect’s forum hosted by Microsoft. It was attended by the Chief Architects and some staff from various Financial, Government and Telco institutions in Sydney. Needless to say the topic was Service Oriented Architecture.
As these were pretty senior individuals, the discussion quickly left anything technical and swung to issues of how to manage development of all these Services. How do we avoid proliferation of duplicate services by several business aligned solution teams.
“It’s the process,” was the valid response from our presenter.
Of course, but how? Our Enterprises are driven by lines-of-business who we like to blame for their selfish approach to technology planning, not considering the good of the entire enterprise, we claim we Enterprise Architects would achieve, if only we had the chance.
Frankly, I don’t believe we Enterprise Architects are a breed with superior intellect and the ability to develop the vision that no one else can see. Instead, we need to implement the process that facilitates the distillation of individual needs of the business into the shared vision of the enterprise.
“How do you do that?”
I think the answer lies in the the processes employed by various standards bodies like IEEE, W3C, or JCP. I must say I have never participated in any standards body. But, I believe the problem of defining a standard for the benefit of a community of selfish stakeholders, is the same as the one we have within our enterprises.
So, I think, the next stop in my EA journey is to study a few standards body processes and see if we can’t apply them in our Enterprise.
I’d love any comments or experience anyone has in attempting to do the same.