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Business Architecture vs Enterprise Architecture. Where Did it Go Wrong?

Enterprise Architecture vs Business Architecture. Where Did it Go Wrong?

One of the biggest battles in the market right now: Business Architecture vs. Enterprise Architecture. If you’re in the business of business transformation, and you want to transform your clients organisation with less effort, less risk, less time and higher profits. Then this post is for you!

Let’s begin the post by defining Enterprise Architecture, which consists of both Business and Technology Architecture. 

It provides a strategic planning framework that aligns information technology with the business functions that it supports. Tech Target refers to it as “a conceptual blueprint that defines the structure and operation of an organisation”.

Enterprise Architecture can be or should be more suitably known as IT-oriented Enterprise Architecture, as it is mostly limited to the IT or technology concerns of the organisation.

Business Architecture, on the other hand, enables strategic planning and tactical execution. 

The Business Architecture Special Interest Group of Object Management Group (OMG) defines business architecture as “A blueprint of the enterprise that provides a common understanding of the organisation, used to align strategic objectives and tactical demands.”

As the definition suggests, a Business Architect is responsible for ‘designing the model or blueprint’ for Business Transformation. 

However, if you’re a Business Architect and are still just focusing on Business Design, it’s high time you embraced the new model for Business Transformation.

A Business Architect is responsible for designing the model or blueprint for Business Transformation. However, if you’re a Business Architect and are still just focusing on Business Design, it’s high time you embraced the new model for Business Transformation.

The Problem

Over the years, Enterprise Architecture and Business Architecture have both significantly matured in their respective fields. 

Unfortunately, however, somewhere along the road something went wrong, and I believe the following problems have led to it.

Firstly, finding authentic Business Architects has become quite difficult these days. 

I say authentic because most Business Architects in the market are actually disguised Technology Architects that focus solely on technological aspects, or Business Analysts that focus solely on the detail.

I believe this is where the world of Business Transformations went wrong

It is very crucial to understand that although business design is a crucial component of Business Architecture, it is not the only component.

In actuality, a Business Architect not only designs the Business Architecture blueprint, but also oversees its implementation as well. 

Yes, you have to design or model parts of the business to better understand it, but you also need to figure out how to move it and make it a reality. 

When a Business Architect who doesn’t also focus on implementation is hired, the Business Transformation is doomed to fail. 

In fact, 70% of Business Transformations end in failure, mostly due to the lack of a successful implementation.

Mike Tyson famously said, “Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth”, and it describes this situation perfectly. 

Coming up with ideas to transform a business is not the problem. The problem is implementing those ideas, efficiently bringing them to life.

Another problem that’s quite commonly found is that Businesses are afraid of Consultants

Most Businesses acknowledge the need to transform, but they’re too afraid to embark on this journey. 

They don’t have the skills required for a successful Business Transformation, but they’re also unwilling to hire consultants, claiming they’re expensive (but not as expensive a time, money and missing opportunities from failed transformation attempts). 

As a result, they opt to do it themselves. Inadequate skills, capability, and budget all lead to the vicious cycle or worsening of the problem that they started with. 

As a successful Business Transformer who has been operating for nearly 20 years, I believe it is my duty to change this stereotype and show organisations what good consultants are capable of. 

Not only do we guarantee an efficient Business Transformation plan, but we also focus on delivery and showing real results for their clients.

If you’re reading this and find the term ‘Business Transformator’ new, then there’s a lot you need to learn about the industry. 

If you’re a Business Architect and are still focusing just on Business Design, you need to embrace the new model for Business Transformation.

The Business Architects who noticed the underlying problem of a significant gap between the design phase and the implementation phase have moved on to something greater: Business Transformators (like us!). We are part-Designers, part-Strategisers, part-Collaborators, and part-Negotiators.

In short, we don’t abandon a Business Transformation after the design phase – we overlook the entire process thoroughly, all the way to its implementation, stakeholder management, coordination and negotiation. 

Trust me when I say that we’re who all the organisations have been looking for, because we’re at war with the 70% failure rate!

Feeling dazed? Head over to my free training that discloses the hidden secrets and insights on how to ensure a successful Business Transformation!

A Business Architect not only designs the architecture blueprint, but also oversees its implementation as well.

The Solution

The practical solution to achieving Business Transformation is bringing in Business Architecture and IT-Architecture together in practice.  

IT Architecture teams cannot ignore the implications of Business Architecture, and Business Architects can no longer isolate themselves from the organisation’s IT Architecture.

Organisations should follow an approach where they employ a Business Architect who works alongside the IT Architect, who together cater for the Enterprise Architecture of the Business Transformation. 

They should be able to understand the technology issues as well as cater to stakeholders. 

IT Architecture is as important as is Business Architecture, and no Business Transformation can be successful with only one or the other.

An important step in the smooth merger of both architectures is to ensure that there is an overall method and framework in place. 

There are a lot of frameworks that combine both disciplines efficiently, and one such example is the HOBA® Framework. 

Its proven framework and blueprints are trusted by the UK Government, FTSE 100 and fast growing companies to deliver their transformation. It addresses the five (5) main causes of transformation failures:

  1. Lack of business stakeholder engagement,
  2. Changing requirements and an inability to adapt,
  3. Incomplete requirements,
  4. Poor communication, and
  5. Poor planning.

HOBA® has introduced a revolutionary new approach to Business Transformations. 

It offers a business-driven framework that puts the Business first – it is developed WITH, FOR and OWNED by the Business, and takes control back from Technology and puts it into the hands of the Business.

The framework is comprehensive and complete, from design to implementation. 

Furthermore, it integrates the industry’s best practises, is agile, caters to change and risk management, and most importantly, addresses the root causes of project failure.

Next time you’re in the market for a great Business Transformation, you know who to contact. 

We won’t just design a model and desert you – we’ll be there throughout the entire Business Transformation journey to ensure that it ends only as a success!

Thank you for reading this!

Heath Gascoigne

P.S. If you want to join our Business Transformator community of like-minded Business Transformators, join the community on the Business Transformator Facebook Group here.

P.P.S. If you want to learn more about Business Transformation, check out The Business Transformation Playbook here.

For more information, visit https://www.hoba.tech

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Heath Gascoigne

Heath Gascoigne

Hi, I'm Heath, the founder of HOBA TECH and host of The Business Transformation Podcast. I help Business Transformation Consultants, Business Designers and Business Architects transform their and their clients' business and join the 30% club that succeed. Join me on this journey.

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