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Enterprise Architecture As Strategy: Creating a Foundation for Business Execution Hardcover – August 1, 2006

104 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Jeanne W. Ross is Principal Research Scientist, MIT Sloan Center for Information Systems Research.

Peter Weill is Director at the Center for Information Systems Research, MIT Sloan School of Management. He lives in Cambridge, MA.

David C. Robertson is Professor if Technology and Strategy at IMD International.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Harvard Business Review Press (August 1, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1591398398
  • ISBN-13: 978-1591398394
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 6.8 x 9.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (104 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #16,698 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

67 of 70 people found the following review helpful By Mark P. McDonald VINE VOICE on August 6, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Ross, Weill and Robertson do what no one else has done in the area of Enterprise Architecture (EA). They have made it understandable and accessible for the executive. EA is an over abused term, often by IT people to intimidate business users and others. Ross, Weill and Roberston provide a well researched, clearly written approach for enterprise architecture and how it applied to business and technical strategy.

The subject may sound dry, but think of it this way -- how do you design your company for current success and future flexibility and you have an idea of the power behind the practices in this book. I say practices rather than ideas because this book is filled with well documented case studies and discussions of what real executives are doing. UPS, CEMEX, Delta Airlines, ING Direct, TD Banknorth are all companies that have realized value. This makes the book practitioner focused and all the more valuable.

Enterprise Architecture zealots will find this book wanting in terms of detailed diagrams and statement professing the unqualified necessity of EA. That is a signal to business executives that this is a book for them to understand the business implications of enterprise design and architecture.

This work is the result of careful examination and study of the topic from a business perspective and that care shows. The book is a balanced and action oriented view on EA, rather than a source of gushing enthusiasm which is something you find in more consulting oriented books.
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57 of 62 people found the following review helpful By Robert Morris HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on August 15, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I do not recall reading another business book in recent years which I found more intellectually stimulating...and practical. Where to begin? Perhaps the most appropriate approach would be to quote the authors. In their Preface, Ross, Weill, and Robertson suggest that, until now, research and executive education have failed to make a breakthrough in understanding and improving IT architecture efforts. They then recall Albert Einstein's observation, "The significant problems we face cannot be solved by the same level of thinking that created them." What do the authors recommend? "The focus needs to be higher - on [in italics] enterprise architecture [end italics], the organizing logic for core business processes and IT infrastructure reflecting the standardization and integration of a company's operating model...[Therefore] enterprise architecture boils down to these two concepts: business process integration and business process standardization. In short, enterprise architecture is not an IT issue - it's a business issue."

Ross, Weill, and Robertson arrived at their conclusions after rigorous and extensive research which revealed what certain top-performing organizations do and how they do it. In this volume, they share what they learned so that other organizations can be guided and informed in their efforts to improve their own performance. More specifically, they respond to questions such as these:

1. What are the most common symptoms ("warning signs") of an inadequate foundation for execution?

2. Which three disciplines must be mastered in order to build one which is solid?

3. What are the key dimensions of an appropriate business model?

4. How to implement the operating model via enterprise architecture?

5.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By S. A. Axelrod on June 8, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Senior management of every company is (or at least should be) concerned about optimizing performance.
Peter Weill, Jeanne Ross and David Robertson's book "Enterprise Architecture as Strategy" draws from a wealth of case studies (totaling close to 500) and proves that the ability to transform a company into a top performer is very much predicated on development of a robust foundation for execution and Enterprise Architecture.

"Enterprise Architecture as Strategy" lays out a common vision and best practices for both Business and IT leaders that are necessary if a company is going to thrive in the modern fast-paced economy. As such, it bridges the gap between the business and IT leadership way of thinking in the area of strategic planning.

Now, this is not the first book ever written on either strategic planning or Enterprise Architecture. There are plenty of books that provide business leaders with advice on how to improve performance of their companies through a strategic planning process. However, this book is unique because it presents a more methodical and architecturally-sound way of achieving desired results. Further, it does so with in-depth analysis of strategic use of information technology. This more systematic, methodical, and technology-oriented approach (as compared to other management methodologies), is based on creating Enterprise Architecture - "the organizing logic for core business processes and IT infrastructure reflecting the standardization and integration of a company's operating model".

There are also plenty of books on Enterprise Architecture written by technologists. While they provide an in-depth analysis of technological aspects of EA (i.e.
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Enterprise Architecture As Strategy: Creating a Foundation for Business Execution
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