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Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Agile Enterprises - Building Flexibility By Setting Priorities

I am recently engaged in a major transformation engagement in an advisory capacity of a major conglomerate whose vision is to become a real time enterprise ( For those who are wondering who i am - I currently head consulting & eBusiness for Satyam,(one of the top four india headquartered IT companies) for the Asia Pacific region.)- While this is my personal blog and not related to my employer, I would like to point to some info that satyam published about this blog available here. I found Mark Smith's article to be quite insightful. Excerpts with edits and my comments added:

The current focus on IT portfolio management and cost reduction has shifted significant resources to nonstrategic technological priorities such as service-oriented architecture. The challenge is to architect SOA and grid-based computing architectures to make business more agile in the foreseeable future? Putting together a blueprint for an agile enterprise is a nice concept, but it's hard to implement because IT systems have become less flexible as business processes have grown more complex. What's the appropriate balance between addressing performance and process improvement through applications versus adopting next-generation IT architecture and computing paradigms?New IT architectures and forms of computing should be more practical and address business and IT priorities such as process and performance improvement. Since the technology vendors haven't explained the direct business value of SOA and grid computing, two initiatives — information and integration management — should take precedence. They're critical, difficult areas of computing, and shall help in better alignment between business and IT by supporting performance management and improving your organization's effectiveness.The responsibility for building the IT for information management has been split in many different directions, including ERP, CRM and other application vendors, the database vendors, and the business intelligence market.All these divergent investments have created a large gap for you to address. What's missing is a strong foundation for information management

Integration management addresses how to control all your organization's integration demands. In the integration space,total cost of ownership is improving and speeding return on investment, but do these technologies offer what businesses require? The debate over which integration approach to take — application, data or information — is pointless because all forms of systems and applications integration are required.The key question is how quickly can these integration technologies be adapted to meet business application needs and information requirements? As performance management takes precedence, IT professionals who respond with technology that can help realize performance management goals will advance their careers.The Key advice :-By all means, keep an eye on the advances of SOA, grid computing and other cutting-edge areas, but focus should be on businesspeople so they can understand the investments required. Focus on improving centralized and distributed information management and on leveraging integration technologies that support performance management and related business imperatives such as compliance management, process improvement and profitability management. This will help align business and IT, improve organizational agility and get past the technobabble. To codify this from a technical implementation perspective(the process perspective shall ofcourse intertwine or the technology stacks may wrap the process repositories) - the approach, based on a major transformation exercise undertaken which appeared to deliver results looks something like this:
-Design from the ‘outside in’ –
-The experience-driven enterprise
-Remove artificial barriers between domains- external and internal computing
-Value information, not information systems
-Reusable capabilities – the route to service velocity
-Use EAI/COTS to build towards a service-oriented architecture

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Sadagopan's Weblog on Emerging Technologies, Trends,Thoughts, Ideas & Cyberworld
"All views expressed are my personal views are not related in any way to my employer"