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- What's new with ArchiMate 3.0 & EA v.13?
Managing a Student Project with Enterprise Architect – Part 3
Written by doug rosenberg
EA TFS Connector a new add-in for the Bellekens EA Toolpack
Written by Geert Bellekens
Reader's Choice Award Recognizes Sparx Systems For Software Architecture
Written by sparxsystems
Written by philchudley
- How to use the Relationship Matrix
Introducing RepoDoc, a document generator for Enterprise Architect
Written by Archimetes
- London User Group; Call for Speakers
- 99 Albert Street
At this year's Gartner Enterprise Architecture Summit in London, Sparx Systems will be a speaker and a premium sponsor of the event.
In its presentation "Agile Architecture for the Digital Business," Sparx Systems will be addressing attendees regarding the challenges in this age of disruptive innovation. We will introduce representatives from successful enterprises to share their stories and help attendees leverage planning platforms to support better business outcomes.
We invite all those attending the summit to both attend Sparx Systems' presentation - which should provide practical insights - as well as the Sparx Systems booth where our friendly representatives will be chatting with visitors to the show floor.
For more informatio, please visit:
The Enterprise Architect User Group Steering Committee and supporters are running another popular event in London.
Over the past few years, the London event has been hosted in a variety of locations, with the 2013 event dubbed by Sparx partner Ian Mitchell as "Probably the largest collection of Sparx EA talent ever assembled", at a venue likened to the Starship Enterprise!
The 2016 event is warming up to be just as important, with a series of 17 minute TED style talks - for short, sharp, focused modelling ideas and EA anecdotes, but also a number of 40 minute extended presentations giving time to investigate larger topics in more detail.
For more details, including agenda and venue, please visit the EAUG website.
Hippo Software has announced the first Enterprise Architect User Group being held in Scotland, the long standing Sparx Systems Global Partner will be hosting the event on the 8th of June.
When: Wednesday 8th June 2016 9.30am - 4pm
Location: Mercure Livingston, Almondview, Livingston, West Lothian, EH54 6QB
Details and Registration: Visit the Hippo Software website
The CIM Users Group European Meeting will be held during June 1-3 in Amsterdam, Netherlands.
According to the CIM Users Group website, the event will "... focus on how to use the CIM to create and support the data-driven utility."
For more details regarding the CIM Users Group meeting, please visit the event website.
Sparx Systems has supported the development of open standards, including the CIM, making available licenses of Enterprise Architect for the purpose of developing the CIM standard.
For more details how Sparx Systems supports open standards development, please visit our website.
US based Technology magazine CIO Review has identified Sparx Systems within their '20 Most Promising BPM Solution Providers' list for 2016.
In a vendor feature by CIO Review, Sparx Systems founder and CEO Geoffrey Sparks discusses how Enterprise Architect caters for the Business/IT sector, enabling productivity gains throughout the enterprise.
View the CIO Review article on their website: Sparx Systems: Driving Enterprise Success with Simplified Business Processing
At the start of this year, the training organization TwentyEighty Strategy Execution released a report titled The Top Ten Business Analysis Trends for 2016, which examined a number of the forces effecting change in the work of business analysts (BA). Amongst its findings, the report noted an increased focus on modeling and collaborative communication, which it attributes to an evolution from the BA's "traditionally tactical role to one of true alignment to overall business strategy to better meet customer needs.”
This finding mirrors much of the current commentary regarding BAs. Views from analysts and observers indicate an involvement of the BA in overall enterprise improvement. Moving away from “gathered and managed” requirements as indicated in the recent article on BA Times by the staff at Watermark Learning. Expectations of the role are changing from one of project-based software delivery, to one of overall strategy execution - resulting in an increased purview of people and processes, as well as technology.
From a quick review of the IIBA®'s Business Analysis Competency Model1, we can surmise this evolution is also indicative of the emerged BA career path, with senior BAs expected to perceive the "overall picture and how individual actions fit within it"1. This is no small feat, considering some of the factors which can hold progress back.
The TwentyEighty report notes the pressures for and against the evolution of the BA role. It notes there is often pressure to provide the weighty and static requirements documents that limit a BA's flexibility to evolve and adapt to ongoing business needs. This is where tooling can help.
Platforms such as Sparx Systems Enterprise Architect can help mitigate these pressures, by keeping BAs connected with and manage the changes within the enterprise. They can remain connected with business and IT teams, helping to produce flexible requirements documents using corporate-formatted templates, using just a few button clicks.
Further to this, modeling techniques such as BPMN, org charts, strategy maps, business rules, enterprise architecture frameworks such as Zachman and UPDM, in addition to balanced scorecards, help demonstrate meaningful links between corporate strategy and execution. They are then communicated with the teams responsible for development. When a platform is shared, its easier to be a part of the same team.
The execution of established strategy can be facilitated using a shared environment and communication tools, including in-tool 'model mail', cloud services, team review and document generation. Communication tools keep domains continuously connected across different geo-located teams.
Heatmaps, use case modeling, business process simulation and Enterprise Architect's tractability matrix can ensure corporate strategy is realized. The new Kanban diagrams in version 12.1, provide high level insights which allow analysts to zero in on potential gains by calling attention to standout processes.
A free read-only version called EA Lite, is available to download from the Sparx Systems website making it a lot simpler to engage executive management in the progress of work items, helping to promote buy-in and keep a project on track by demonstrating its connection with business value.
In a new initiative to integrate business analysis best practices into the modeling environment, Sparx Systems has established a strategic partnership with the IIBA and is currently developing a BABOK® Guide v3 Reference Model to be delivered within Enterprise Architect.
As the role of the BA expands to take in so much more of a company's strategy and requires ongoing connectivity with many different teams - smart, integrated platforms can help mitigate some of those pressures and facilitate opportunities for innovation that can go otherwise unexplored.
Sparx Systems offers a free 30 day trial of Enterprise Architect from the Sparx Systems website: www.sparxsystems.com/try
1. International Institute of Business Analysis™ (IIBA®) (2011). Business Analysis Competency Model. Toronto, Ontario, Canada: International Institute of Business Analysis. 16.
"Software is eating the world"
Marc Andreeson, Co-founder of Netscape
In those competitive business scenarios where most of the value is delivered by software, the value chains of established players are disrupted. The impact of this force will grow, with a voracious appetite for competition.
The software driven dynamic has been referred to as “unscaled” by Harvard Business Review and it makes incumbent industry players look listless. Immediate instances are Uber who have left the taxi industry stalled in their wake and agile AirBnB who have stolen a march on the sleeping accommodation sector.
Unscaling is neither upscaling or downscaling, it is small becoming the new big and it occurs when the global audience of the inexpensive Internet becomes exploited and a wide choice of modular services is accessed. It is nimble and quick and it is an innovator nirvana.
The newspaper and magazine industries have recently seen significant disruption as print circulation continues a global freefall, while the number of readers getting their news via smart phone or tablet rises rapidly. According to a report “US Smartphone Use in 2015”, published by the Pew Research Center, 64% of American adults now own a smartphone of some kind, up from 35% in the spring of 2011. A majority of these use their phone to follow along with breaking news, and to share and be informed about happenings in their local community.
This disruption is patently evident in many different industries over recent years. The disruption is not simply the move away from traditional media, but reflects a change in reader empowerment. Ordinary people now have the capability to be journalists and contribute to online conversations. All of this is facilitated by software that simplifies publishing, video production and live updates as global events happen.
Take one of the more recent developments in the manufacturing industry, that of 3D printers which are software controlled. This technology enables the rapid development and revision of products while bypassing costly traditional manufacturing processes.
However as the 3D printing revolution is gathers pace the technology is finding deployments in core manufacturing.
In 2013 a South African aircraft manufacturer Aerosud, an established supplier to major aircraft manufacturers Airbus and Boeing, started building a 3D printer capable of manufacturing aircraft components an order of magnitude faster and close to fifty times larger than any previous printer capable of making metal parts.
The average high end modern car has 100 million lines of code, creating a lower-cost entry point for non-automotive companies with fresh approaches. The trend toward hybrid and electric vehicles such as the Tesla, which is completely computer controlled will only accelerate the software shift. Software runs engines, controls safety features, entertains passengers, guides drivers to destinations and connects each car to mobile, satellite and GPS networks. The automobile is shifting from mechanical to electrical and software controls.
The degree of software control and complexity in cars and is growing and according to the Economist in January 2016, technology firms may be better placed than car makers to develop and profit from the software that will underpin both automated driving and vehicle-sharing.
Some of these firms may even manufacture cars of their own. Local Motors has produced the first of a range of road-ready, 3D printed vehicles. The Low Speed Electric Vehicles (LSEV) will debut in Q1 2016. A highway-ready version will be released in late 2016.
Uber is innovating at the intersection of lifestyle and logistics, connecting riders with safe, reliable, convenient transportation providers at a variety of price-points in cities around the world. The company owns no cars and is disrupting the global taxi industry while focusing on new logistics sectors. Just before the recent consumer electronics show in Las Vegas, GM announced a $500m investment in Lyft, US based nationwide ride-sharing service. Lyft started in 2012 and is currently valued at US$2.5B
According to research from the Global Center for Digital Business Transformation (DBT Center), 47 percent of retail executives believe that disruption could put them out of business. The combination of on-line, in-store, call center and mobile is creating a new retail customer experience called omnichannel that is managed to ensure that it is seamless, integrated and consistent across all channels. The decision as to how service will be delivered is becoming the prerogative of the digitally empowered customer rather than that of the retailer.
Managing the Crisis
While digital disruption of traditional business value chains is a fact, the disruption itself can be seen as a positive, not only because competition sparks innovation, but because it delivers greater value, particularly for the customer and those other actors who drive the success of the business, by consistently realising the resulting digital value.
In a McKinsey article, on the perils of ignoring software development, the article includes a statement that “Despite the mission-critical nature of software, it gets surprisingly little attention in the C-suite.” Further to this they add that as digital technologies continue reshaping markets, the keys to success for a growing number of companies are, embracing the rising strategic importance of software, and viewing software development as a crucial competitive battlefield.
In many instances it is not a single technology, but different technologies that merge which cause digital disruption in the value chain. Once again, change agility needs technology support. These new process demands are growing in many business sectors and because successful transition to the maximum utilisation of strategic information technology is a priority for many organisations, enterprise-class BPM principles are being hard wired into operations. Tools such as Sparx Systems Enterprise Architect and standards including Business Process Modeling are essential.
Approximately 2.3 million lines of code run the International Space Station and it is imperative that it continues to function as expected. The development of software that is mission critical or essential to the survival of business today, necessitates the use of fit for purpose, industrial strength technology.
Sparx Systems Enterprise Architect delivers revolutionary architecture to meet the challenges of the digital revolution, separating exploratory areas of the business, from those that are well established, while supporting collaborative agile development, based on the business direction, strategy and vision. It allows the organisation to revise existing enterprise architecture to support the ongoing process of business transformation.
To accept risk and get comfortable with a pace of change that is very different from the current IT operational models, it is essential to leverage technologies that have been designed to mitigate risk and that are built to support industry best practice and standards for industry.
This agile enterprise architecture platform fosters innovation, by enabling continuous building and refactoring, to facilitate the emerging and vanguard technologies. Simultaneously in a disruptive business environment where continuity is the highest priority, Enterprise Architect supports the consolidation of legacy capabilities.
Sparx Systems Enterprise Architect is the popular, powerful and affordable visual modeling platform, capable of meeting the exacting demands of enterprise IT and Business.
To manage change in a hyper changing world, organisational leaders are now selecting reliable, scalable solutions that have been extensively road tested, by many hundred of thousands of users.
In a period of global industry disruption such as is currently being experienced, it is essential to choose the right, standards based platform with the lowest maintenance overhead, to meet the challenges of predictive change management, collaboration and interoperability.
Sparx Systems partner OMNILINK was awarded the Victorian Spatial Excellence Award (VSEA) for Export in September 2015.
The AssetWhere™ product which allows organisations to visualise underground services, room and building details and key asset information in a map-based system, was recognised for improving the Management of Property Records in Schools in the UK.
The Sparx Systems visual modeling platform, Enterprise Architect, the tool of choice for the global geospatial community was used to design and build the AssetWhere™ solution.
This is the second of a 2 part series - Read Part 1 here.
The link between processes and value creation is the point of focus for business. Processes are often the heart of how many organizations look to deliver value both inside and outside of the organization and the overarching organisational process is the value chain.
The BPMN standard developed by the Object Management Group (OMG), provides the ability to communicate both internal and external business procedures, in a graphical, standardised manner. This core enabler of business process management supports both Business and IT, in that it allows the modeling of business processes and services, in a notation that is both intuitively understood by the Business Analysts, who draft the processes, while including the complex semantics - comprehended by Software Developers, who implement the technology - to execute these processes.
Complexity and Risk:
An equally important aim of the BPMN is to ensure that XML, designed for business process execution - and BPML - can also be visually expressed in a common notation. The value of modeling is the capacity to assist the management of complexity and associated risk and to facilitate communication. The models produced, reflect the activities between businesses and their customers and provide explicit records of the agreed requirements for successful business processes.
To manage inter-organizational business processes, concepts for business process management (BPM) need to be adopted and extended. Formerly siloed key industries are being forced to collaborate, rethink their fundamental business purpose, envision the business they are in and will be in. They are rapidly adapting from exclusive, to inclusive and from “me” to “we.” In the “we” future of collaboration, success lies in how organisations use technology to improve their own internal processes, while tapping into exo-organisational ecosystems.
Mobile and automotive industries are collaborating, as are health, retail, and aviation. This requires the propagation of data between different organisations where sharing of standards based process models has a mutual benefit.
New cross-organizational processes need close coordination among networking partners and in this area the Schema Composer in Enterprise Architect 12.1 represents a key enabling technology.
Just as the value of a model, is the standards-based common view of a complex system that it presents to a variety of stakeholders, so being able to successfully construct messages from within the model is very valuable because the format or style of messages to be exchanged, can be designed and communicated in a standards-based way- between machine to machine or business to business.
The Schema Composer provides all entities with mutual assurance via interoperability standards, as to how each entity will react, read and connect with respect to the message exchange and removes the concern to ensure that messages will be successfully exchanged - i.e received and understood - on key levels such as business, information, software etc.
New business opportunities are realised through collaboration and interoperability. At the heart of any change, whatever it may be is a common standards-based reference frame that allows individuals and business to understand their industry goal, and their contribution and role in achieving the goal.
Collaboration is becoming a new enterprise standard. In the face of the disruptive challenges, successful transition to optimised utilisation of strategic information technology is a priority for many organisations. Collaboration supports group synthesis, enabling the enterprise to leverage the strengths of all its parts to increase the chances of success while reducing or eliminating process overlap and resource redundancy. The shared awareness of issues promoted through collaboration, encourages trust and builds confidence in group stakeholders, synergising the collective response to problem resolution.
Betsy Burton, a vice president and distinguished analyst at Gartner said in a 2011 press release “Organizations that do not focus EA on their business strategy and on collaborating with business leaders will be greatly limited in their ability to deliver substantial business value. To achieve business outcomes and to drive business change, EA value must be collaboratively developed and supported within the context of the business direction, strategy and future vision."
The organization's enterprise architecture plays a key role in this transition. It is no surprise that in the current atmosphere of technology change collaboration in the enterprise architecture work space is growing. A recent article in SD Times, reports from the 2014 Collaborative Development trends report by the Linux Foundation that collaborative development is on the rise. Nearly half of business managers surveyed said they got involved in collaborative development because it allows them to innovate and/or help transform their industry.
A common reference frame that allows individuals to understand what the goal is, and their contribution and role in achieving the goal, is at the heart of any change, whatever it may be.
Viewing the Future:
BPSim is directly linked to (and extends) the Business Process Modelling Notation (BPMN) standard to enable easy exchange of models and analysis data required for simulation between platforms.
Business transformation projects are frequently initiated by enterprises in order to capitalise on market opportunities and boost profitability and a critical task is to create an accurate picture of exactly which business processes and resources are needed to deliver against future demand. Furthermore, they must be sure that any business changes support optimised efficiency and a clear understanding developed around the crucial timing of key asset investments.
Simulating business processes offers a view of future performance of new processes and the opportunity to validate changes to existing processes without disturbing current business operations.
Brochure: MDG Technology for BPMN
Platforms Page: Tools for Business Process Modeling using the BPMN
Resources: The Business Process Model
For information about how Enterprise Architect provides essential support for all of the critical business change issues mentioned above, please visit Sparx Systems website at www.sparxsystems.com, where you can download a 30 day evaluation licence and test for yourself.
Event: UN Global Geospatial Information Management Forum
Location: Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Date: April 20-22, 2016
The Fourth High Level Forum on UN Global Geospatial Information Management (UN-GGIM) will be hosted in collaboration with the Government of Ethiopia and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) at UNECA's Headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, from 20-22 April 2016.
Enterprise Architect has been an essential platform for the development of Statistical and Spatial Frameworks.