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IT: Everywhere, but invisible June 28, 2012

Posted by danthomas3 in Enterprise Architecture.
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I’ve heard many stories from IT professionals who have worked for organizations or businesses that have evolved a sense of complacency with the proposition of their IT operations being “everywhere, but invisible”. IT governance reserving the term “invisible” to suggest that all IT operations (including application development, data security, server maintenance, etc.) be helpful but nonintrusive while “everywhere” simply acknowledges the growing global reliance on the digital tools that IT can deliver. “Everywhere, but invisible”, I cringed every time I heard this phrase. Admittedly, it’s a phrase that could be descriptive of many clerical departments within an organization or business, but IT professionals have the potential to be valued with the same (if not more) importance as high level executives. There are perhaps many ways to justify this inflated importance but it requires evolving services beyond the minimum purview of simply writing computer code or answering Help Desk calls all day. It’s been my experience from working in the industry that when this is perceived of IT, the department merely shrinks in size and respect garnishing little to no clout and powerless and speechless within circles of discussion pertaining to business growth and innovations. There is much value for organizations and businesses from IT operations when it strategically aligns people, processes, and technology using enterprising architecture to promoting more growth of strategic initiatives [2].

Enterprise Architecture requires an coordinated operational model of rigorous architecture of a business’s core processes prioritizing customer interfaces, decentralized enterprise data, and business strategies while showing how these processes are unified, diversified, replicated, or coordinated [1, 2]. Standardizing business processes includes infusing an organization’s overarching scope and objectives to operational process and is invaluable in blueprinting business strategies. Standardization also shows how adaptive and supportive IT can be enabling organizational growth. As with any architectural design, customization for the proper audience should be considered when delivering representation of IT deliverables. Architectural models should be skewed for the proper audience; business models should be distinguishable from models of information or data flows and technical models considering the diversity of skillsets [3]. I’d have to admit that my experience thus far in IT coupled with the theories of Enterprise Architecture empowers me to implement agile and well-planned modeling delivering a contextual message of justifying how IT is more valued by its invisibility rather than dispensable, capable of not only aligning technological operations but potentially enhancing many, if not all, business and organizational processes. Enterprise Architecture allows IT to truly be everywhere and invisible.

Reference:
[1] Enterprise Architecture – Operating Model.pptx
[2] Enterprise Architecture – Foundations.pptx
[3] Zachman, J.A., Framework for information system architecture

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