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Enterprise Architecture As Strategy: Creating a Foundation for Business Execution Hardcover – August 1, 2006
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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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The book is clearly based on real life cases, unfortunately only outlining success stories. But it is based on what can be achieved and more importantly what has been achieved. Making this not an Ivory Tower EA mumbo-jumbo book you find so often.
Clearly dated, the stories, cases, are not at the last maturity level she mentions, and the companies she discusses are all looking for massive business integration by implementing ERP systems. Not something many of us would base our business on these days (2014). New evolutions like Cloud and SOA are not in there. But the story holds true.
The authors make a clear case that companies adopting enterprise architecture to build their foundation for business execution can achieve stellar results, and avoid the undesirable consequence of agility-favoring natural selection in the marketplace. They provide a concise and understandable framework for building the foundation for business execution, and remind us to apply patience and provide support while we build architecture maturity and learn from each step in the framework.
The authors set the high-watermark for enterprise architecture books. They reveal how enterprise architecture is at the nexus of business and technology, and how it can and should be used to align IT with the business operating model. This alignment builds synergy throughout the organization. Though not said in as many words, the point is clearly made that even professionals in the IT department must consider themselves as business professionals first and foremost. They are business professionals who know and apply information technology to enable business capabilities.
I highly recommend this book.
The issues discussed in this book resonate strongly with the daily grind at my company. Add to that the fact that this is based on some thorough research from Harvard lends a lot more credibility to this book & I do not hesitate in recommending it to my non technical peers.
It provides a good frame of reference to help you understand the different organizational / IT ecosystems & what sort of characteristics differentiate them. Something to remember before embarking on any enterprise architecture strategy.
It then follows with real life case studies / examples of various such scenarios. I really like the fact that this book is written in a very matter of fact way without the hype that is driving the Enterprise Architects of today insane.
I did reflect a lot upon everything it talks about & also found the core diagrams that it mentions (I think chapter 2/3) really useful. They have served as great discussion starters with business for Tech/Business alignment.
IMO, this book is like a good single grain malt, one that you want to sip very slowly & savor.