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Thursday, 21 July 2016 05:42

Kanban with Enterprise Architect

At Sparx Systems there are a number of key objectives that are always in the minds of the developers. One is delivering what the end user wants and the other is to exceed end user expectations, by delivering to their needs at an affordable price point. A third objective is to add value by making the end user experience more practical, inclusive and convenient.

 

These are the reasons why Enterprise Architect is the total modelling and design environment, -adaptable and extensible, providing all that is required by the end user and reducing or eliminating the inconvenience of access to the “external application”. That’s a simple expectation of a modelling tool, and the Sparx Systems interpretation of this expectation puts Enterprise Architect Version 13 in a class of its own.

 

Kanban was first introduced into Enterprise Architect Version 11. As a key agile process, Kanban is a method for managing knowledge work, with an emphasis on just-in-time delivery. It presents all participants with a full view of the process, from task definition, to delivery to a customer. Because Kanban is a set of practices that can also be implemented in traditional hierarchical bureaucracy, it does not present a threat to the existing culture and can work within different cultures.

 

In 2015 a Forrester survey found that the customer experience topped priorities for business and technology leaders. Based on these results Forrester forecasts that in 2016, customer experience “will be among the top 10 critical success factors determining who will win and who will fail in the age of the customer.” This is interesting because agile processes embrace change, which translates as the customer’s competitive advantage. Or put another way, the price of survival is to become agile. In recent times Kanban has been applied to the process of developing software-centric solutions in an attempt to ensure that value is delivered to the customer as quickly as possible.

 

Kanban is an agile entry point that while it does not challenge the culture it can be used to challenge the status quo. However, as an agile practice Kanban can be a cultural “change agent” and lead to Scrum and XP agile practices. Enterprise Architect offers a complete Agile Project Management foundation for the largest to the smallest of projects, supporting mainstream agile delivery frameworks and methods including, SCRUM, RUP, XP, DSDM and Kanban.

 

Kanban revolves around a visual board for managing work-in-progress and making work flow issues apparent through process definition based on how the work is handled in the team and on stakeholder priorities. A backlog is created in order to keep track of the work and as a basis for setting priorities. The cycle time of the tickets can be measured and used to keep track on improvements.

 

kanban three stage workflow sml kanban model patterns sml

 

Enterprise Architect has built-in Kanban diagrams and a number of pre-built workflow patterns that can be used 'as-is' or configured to suit any project or initiative. Because Enterprise Architect is also a sophisticated modeling platform for strategic and business analysis, architecture, design, implementation, testing and deployment, this Kanban facility becomes very powerful. Work items on a Kanban Board can be linked to strategic decisions, business rules, policies, requirements, architecture and design elements and every facility in the development lifecycle.

 

Agile planning is the assessment of the rate that agile teams can convert customer requirements into deployment ready software, while determining when they will be done. Burn down charts will provide these indicators. With Enterprise Architect burn down charts and time series graphs can be easily created and these are regularly and automatically updated by Enterprise Architect. A sophisticated charting facility is available to create powerful and expressive charts and dashboards, that will provide insights into the Kanban process and enable Product Owners and other team members to monitor performance and determine ways of fine tuning how the team works. There are a range of built-in charts, including bar, pie charts and heat maps, but a team is free to create any number of user-defined charts, which can also be incorporated into team processes and reviews.

 

As the affordable solution of choice for organisations who want to adopt Agile, including Kanban, Enterprise Architect 13 concantenates potentially siloed projects or sprints and provides assurance against the risk of segregation and ultimate fracturing of visibility across the enterprise, which can be caused by ad-hoc Agile initiatives.

 

In Enterprise Architect 13, Kanbans can be set at the individual level or project level in a shared model. With the 'My Kanban' feature, individual work can be tracked while the 'Project Kanban' option supports the team.

 

Projects of any size can benefit from the efficiencies of the flexible and integrated Kanban facility built into the Enterprise Architect core product. The Kanban features in Enterprise Architect are highly configurable and can be altered to suit any team or process, including agile, iterative and incremental, and even waterfall projects. This simple, yet powerful project management approach, creates a team collaboration platform that will result in products, services and solutions being delivered to customers with efficiency and in record time.

 

Webinar Recording: Introduction to Kanban and Heatmaps (using EA 12.1)

 

Workflow model patterns have been added, enabling the creation and linking of single or multiple stage Kanban workflows utilizing the Backlog, Iteration and Complete Kanban diagrams to support the existing “Standard type”. Together, these form powerful Kanban workflows, allowing the easy movement of Kanban elements between them. This movement provides the user with a view of the current team resources allocated to the Kanban element, enabling them to see what resource has been assigned, and completion status.

 

To assist with control of agile sprints, new menu items are available from the Construct Ribbon to search and find all Kanbans in a model. Kanban drawing style can be used showing Type, Status, Version, Priority, Bold Name, Stereotype, Phase, Author, and Truncate with name and Icon.

 

Work Items can be drawn with a compelling visual style, such as a colored card that can be dragged anywhere in the diagram to change order in a given lane, or from lane to lane, progressing from left to right through the board, representing progress towards value for the customer. The lanes are typically bound to the values of a 'project management aware' property such as status or phase, and as the item is dragged from lane to lane the value of the bound property is automatically changed. If a diagram is linked to a project management property, dragging an element from one lane to another automatically changes the value of the property, to the value that the lane represents.

 

To review Kanban features supported by Enterprise Architect 13. please visit:

Published in Sparx Insights
We invite you to join Ramsay Millar, globally recognized TOGAF® Practitioner who has successfully deployed TOGAF® practices and 21 architecture repositories across organizations using Sparx Enterprise Architect. 
 
Ramsay distinguishes himself as an industry leader with his in-depth experience and highly practiced background in enterprise architecture, consulting, training, and course authorship.
 
He has just released his newest ONLINE workshop, "Enterprise Architect for TOGAF Practitioners".
 
Published in News

APG ModelFlow™ EA Trial Available for Download

ModelFlow APG ModelFlow EA v1.6.2 is now available for download! Access the trial version right now and immediately evaluate how APG ModelFlow can:

  • Effectively exploit enterprise content for architecture-based decision making
  • Seamlessly exchange architecture model content among multiple EA toolsets
  • Reliably synchronize EA content with federated enterprise data repositories
  • Confidently embrace holistic enterprise-wide perspective of business and IT data

Tutorials

The trial download includes two introductory tutorials to walk you through importing Enterprise Architecture content into EA:

  • TOGAF®-based tutorial with Capabilities, Business Functions, and Applications
  • DoDAF/UPDM™-based tutorial with Capabilities, Performers, Activities, and Systems (exported from IBM® Rational®/Unicom® System Architect®)

Features

  • Import element and connector content from any ODBC, SQL, and CSV data source
  • Align with existing and custom MDG Technologies and UML Profiles
  • Synchronize with existing elements and connectors using any property or tagged value
  • Map columns to any EA element or connector property or tagged value
  • Map columns to other element types to create related elements and explicit relationships
  • Map columns to parent elements to create nested element hierarchies
  • Map columns to packages to create nested package hierarchies
  • Map columns to create element linked document or set element fill color
  • Automatically synchronize with systems of record via command line utility using scheduling agent
  • Baseline packages prior to import using EA command line utility

» Download APG ModelFlow EA Trial

Coming soon: Diagram importing and new XML data source!

Application List
Figure 1 Application Listing in Excel

 

ModelFlow Configuration
Figure 2 APG ModelFlow Configuration

 

Imported EA Content
Figure 3 Imported Content with Relationships and Tagged Values
Published in News
Tuesday, 08 March 2016 23:53

Preparing for the Software Future

"Software is eating the world"

Marc Andreeson, Co-founder of Netscape

 

DigiziedWorld 300x300In 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.

 

Print Media

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.

 

Manufacturing

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.

 

DigiziedWorld autoAutomotive

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.

 

Taxi Services

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

 

Retail

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.

 

DigiziedWorld aviationManaging 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.

 

Mission Critical

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. 


Innovative Technology

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.

DigiziedWorld renewablesSparx 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.

 

Inherited Value

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.

 

Enterprise Architect

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.

Published in Sparx Insights
Thursday, 21 January 2016 01:48

The Agile Business Analyst

“It's not the technology that's scary; it's what it does to the relations between people that's scary”

- Robert M. Pirsig, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance

Everything Changing:

We are all aware that we are living in a period of unprecedented disruption where everything that we thought as being the status quo, business as usual, is changing rapidly.  Technology ‘disrupts existing markets and value networks, displacing established market leaders and alliances’.  Popular examples are Uber which is challenging the taxi industry model. Then there is AirBnB challenging the accommodation industry model and 3D printing which is challenging the manufacturing model.  

However, in a recent interview Jay Scanlan and Paul Wilmot from McKinsey, posit that unlike a pure play disrupter such as Uber, “our incumbent organizations and our incumbent clients have a broader range of concerns that they need to address. And they have a broader range of customer needs and consumer demands that they want to fulfill.”

Unlike start ups, incumbent organizations hold valuable assets like people, finance and data, etc. Scanlan and Wilmot pose the question as to how incumbents will strategically use these assets to defend themselves against aggressive competition, as digital disrupts their industry.

 

agile cycle 300pxAgile... The New Norm:

In the face of this change, the adoption of Agile approaches to project management is growing.  It is expected that in 2016 the US Federal Government General Services Administration will solicit bids for a number of major agile projects.  This follows the piloting of agile projects last year by 18F, an agile development consulting arm, within General Services Administration.

A recent survey of development and IT professionals, shows that Agile is now the norm. The majority of development teams and projects now embrace the methodology, while pure waterfall approaches are in the minority. The study conducted by HP in 2014 consisted of an online survey of 601 software developers and IT professionals  representing over 600 organisations,  where 400 + described themselves as “pure agile”.

According to Gartner “Digital business will require application leaders to explore development outside of traditional IT and to ensure fast-paced incremental releases in order to be competitive.”  Just as digital transformation is changing role of application leaders such as the CIO, so too it is impacting the role of the Business Analyst (BA) in the private and public sectors.

 

The Agile Business Analyst:

The BA has traditionally embraced the rapids of change much like a canoeist. Using the IIBA Body of Knowledge (BABOK) as both their map and compass, they engage the volatility and uncertainty of change. With an innate capability they navigate successful transits, piloting by their experience and understanding of the different currents and hazards.  

Agile presents great opportunity for the BA.  In the process of connecting people and engendering understanding, improving product quality and increasing customer satisfaction, they have the potential to play many roles, to become the consultant.

A key finding of the HP survey was that the majority of participants agreed that “the primary motivators for Agile adoption are associated with improving team collaboration and increasing software quality and customer satisfaction.”

Becoming increasingly involved in Agile projects and addressing the growth in the variety of concerns of the stakeholder (the Customer) will require that the BA leverage the use of Agile tools.  This technology will enable the BA to help their clients find ways to make Agile work for them.


BABOK  3.0 Reference Model - an Agile Approach:

babok mindmap shotRecently, through a collaboration agreement between International Institute of Business Analysis (IIBA) and Sparx Systems, a BABOK 3.0 Reference Model has been developed in Enterprise Architect.

This Reference Model provides case studies covering every knowledge area, task and technique in the BABOK Guide. Each case study contains hundreds of examples utilizing diagrams, matrices, charts, documents, and a plethora of tools.  This functionality with many others is combined with the power of Enterprise Architect.

The Reference Model links the BABOK 3.0 to a rich and complete User Guide that provides help and guidance with every aspect of using Enterprise Architect.  Sparx Systems Enterprise Architect is the control center supporting real time collaborative Enterprise Architecture planning, building, testing, deployment and communication across all domains and stakeholders.


Enterprise Agile Adoption:

As the constraints of the traditional enterprise architecture approach are replaced by the force of digital convergence and transformation, executives seek agile enterprise architecture approaches and technologies that are fit for purpose.  The tools deployed to manage that architecture are critical to the success of digital transformation.

Detailed descriptions in the Reference Model will teach the Business Analysts how to use the tool to complete tasks and perform techniques including process modeling and requirements management. Videos, slideshows and white papers add to the rich set of guidance that will help BA's become an Agile Business Analyst assisting organizations to become more purposeful in how they choose to adopt Agile.

Seeking customer feedback and quickly improving the product, fuels the success of many disruptive technologies.  This is the approach of Sparx Systems to the ongoing development of Enterprise Architect. As Sparx Systems CEO, Geoff Sparks notes, “Agile development provides a shared and flexible team experience through complete transparency, iterative development and constant feedback - it has been the essential design goal of Enterprise Architect for over a decade and it will remain just as valid today.”

 

Additional Information:

Published in Sparx Insights

Sparx Systems has been regarded highly in a recent publication of CIO Review magazine, identifying the company as a benchmark vendor within the Enterprise Architecture space.

sparx systems awarded cioreview 20 most promising enterprise architecture technology providers 2015Following on from CIOReview's inclusion of Sparx Systems within the 2015 BPM Top 20 list, the review process is conducted with the support of industry experts, identifying vendors who "... have exhibited vast knowledge and in-depth expertise in delivering EA related solutions."

An active and informative Sparx Community is one of the driving forces that support Sparx Systems in being recognized in this space; a highly collaborative Community membership who share their experiences underpins the global appeal of Enterprise Architect.

CIO Review's 20 Most Promising Enterprise Architecture Technology Providers of

Read the full article:  http://www.sparxsystems.com/bin/cio-review-ea.pdf
Cover story: http://ea.cioreview.com/vendors/2015/
Top 20 list: http://ea.cioreview.com/vendors/2015/20special1

Published in News

Learn how to use ArchiMate and Enterprise Architect to model your enterprise architecture. Understand the complex inter-dependencies between people, processes, applications, data and hardware. Use ArchiMate to align your business and IT strategies. Register now to attend on 18th or 19th June 2014.

 

http://www.sparxsystems.com/resources/webinar/partners/archimate/archimate-introduction-hippo.html

Published in News

The Open Group Architecture Framework (TOGAF) is the industry's leading enterprise architecture framework. TOGAF contains numerous best practices and a proven method for establishing an architecture capability and developing architecture content. This webinar will show you how to use Sparx Systems Enterprise Architect to implement a TOGAF-based Architecture Repository, including: the Architecture Landscape, Standards Information Base, Reference Library, and Architecture Metamodel.

Chris Armstrong

 

Mr. Chris Armstrong, President of Armstrong Process Group, Inc., is an internationally recognized thought leader in enterprise architecture, formal modeling, process improvement, systems and software engineering, requirements management, and agile development. Mr. Armstrong represents APG at The Open Group, the Object Management Group and the Eclipse Foundation.

Mr. Armstrong is a co-chair of the TOGAF Certification Standing Committee (CSC) and EA Capability Improvement project, was a significant contributor to TOGAF 9, and is contributing to the next version of TOGAF currently under development. Mr. Armstrong is certified in TOGAF, ArchiMate, Open FAIR, UML, and SysML.

The webinar will be held on the 19th and 20th of March.  Check the registration page below for local times.

For more information, please use our Webinar Registration Page.

Published in News

Introduction

 

In the last year I have done a number of projects for a Dutch government agency as a data architect. This organisation has an architecture team with four members. There is a problem in producing architecture documents like Project Start Architectures, it takes too much time and the result has limited value for the projects.  This is mainly caused by the lack of overview on the baseline and the target architecture. There is no overview of the business processes, the application and the infrastructure.

For every project, an architect has to do a lot of research on the baseline architecture first, sometimes this activity takes weeks to get a architecture view that is input for working on the target architecture. Another problem is that every architect has his own tools and techniques for the architecture notations and documents. Although there is an architecture document template, there are large differences in the quality and presentation of these documents. However due to the differences in tools and techniques, every architect starts from scratch for every project.

To tackle these problems the team decided to synchronize their activities, techniques, notation and tools. Therefore the following questions where formulated:

·         Which notation is best to support our architecture documents and diagrams?

·         Based on the selected notation, which tool can help us to make our documents more efficiently?

·         What do we have to change in our team to encourage reuse of existing documents and diagrams?

Below I will describe how we looked for answers to these questions and what lessons we have learned.

ArchiMate

 

In the Netherlands, there are a lot of architecture methods available like Togaf, Zachman, Dragon1, Demo, DyA and ArchiMate.  Each method has its own characteristics. However which are important for our own organisation. The architecture team did an interactive workshop to formulate the following requirements for the architecture methodology:

·         It must be an open standard and is used in other government agencies for exchanging models.

·         Applicable for all aspects of an enterprise architecture, from business to infrastructure and data architecture.

·         It must be easy to use and easy to read for non IT professionals.

In this interactive workshop a number of extra requirements where formulated and most important we defined a multiplier define the importance for each requirement. The requirements were mapped on a number of architecture methodologies and ArchiMate was the methodology with the highest score.

ArchiMate is an open standard with a powerful notation for all the aspects of enterprise architecture. Since ArchiMate 2.0 there are even extensions for motivation like principles, requirements and stakeholders and project management for plateaus, gaps and work packages. In the figure below you see a sample ArchiMate 2.0 diagram.

Figure 1 Sample ArchiMate notation

After this methodology selection the next step was to evaluate it in a number of projects. For ArchiMate there are Visio Stencils and a number of open source tools. Every architect used the notation for a period of time and during this period we organized a number of sessions to discuss the results. We also organized an interactive session with our non IT stakeholders to evaluate the selected methodology.

In these evaluations we discovered that the ArchiMate notation is valuable for describing the architecture in our organisation. For the notation instruction material was made with example diagrams and describing when to use what ArchiMate viewpoints. However the notation is too rich for most of the situations. So the following categories were introduced:

·         Primary diagrams, should be present in every architecture document

·         Secondary diagrams, only available in complex documents for extra description

During the evaluations it became clear that the Visio stencils and open source tooling had insufficient functionality for the next phase, the implementation of the methodology.

Using Enterprise Architect

Like we did with the notation we formulated a number of requirements including a multiplier for each architect and compared a number of tools with each other. This was done with a simple spreadsheet. In the figure below a part of the spreadsheet

Figure 2: Requirement-Tool matrix

Based on the results of this matrix Enterprise Architect had the best score and we introduced the product. This introduction was done in a number of planned steps. There was a risk that the organisation returned to old habits of working in an unstructured way and introducing a architecture methodology combined with tooling has to be embedded in all the activities of the architects.

In the following sessions I will describe a number of important aspects for introducing Enterprise Architect with ArchiMate.

 

Repository setup

Already in an early phase of the tool introduction we discovered that the repository content can become messy when you do not think about structuring the elements. Although there is a good project browser search function structuring the project so you can browse for elements is a good aid for the users of the system.

The repository is divided in three sections:

·         Projects,  actual project documents in various stages of completion

·         Reference architecture, elements and diagrams from previous projects that are generic and probably reusable in future projects. This section is subcategorized in a structured manner comparable with the ArchiMate layers and columns

·         Archive, diagrams and elements from projects that are probably not reusable.

Figure 3: Repository setup

Document generation

Introducing an architecture methodology in combination with tooling asks a lot of effort from the involved professionals. It was therefore important to seek for a solution to reduce the production time of the architecture documents, this was the reason why we started this project in the first place.

Already in an early phase of the project document generation was investigated as part of the overall solution. Document generation proved to be a great help to achieve this goal. The standard document templates were changed to our own corporate layout and the layout of the elements was changed for a better readability. The repository setup was changed so it was possible to change ordering and exclude packages from the document generation.

Sharepoint Wiki

In the organisation Microsoft SharePoint is the application for team- and project collaboration. The architecture team used this already and has made a lot of information available in a SharePoint wiki. First approach was to transfer this information to Enterprise Architect. However making links to files and Wiki content from the Enterprise Architect packages and elements turned out to be a good solution. With the links from the screens and the generated documentation to the wiki content people can easily get access to background information.

Custodian

In the repository setup a distinct difference is made to project data and generic data of the reference architecture. Especially this reference architecture is an important aspect of introducing standardization and reusability. Therefore the reference architecture needs special governance. The team decided to introduce a custiodian role. This custodian is responsible for the reference architecture package in the repository. To keep this reference architecture up to date the custodian has the following activities:

·         Give information and instructions to team members about the setup of the reference architecture and how to use the elements and diagrams.

·         Give feedback on diagrams and notation made by team members in project documentation.

·         Select generic diagrams and elements from project documentation for transfer to the reference architecture.

This custodian role turned out to be a very good decision to help introduce the ArchiMate notation, the new methodology and the usage of the tooling in a right manner.  

Lessons Learned

In one year the organisation introduced a new architecture methodology, notation and tooling. Furthermore the production of architecture documents changed dramatically. Some aspects were successful, while others werenot. The most important lessons we learned are

·         Team involvement,  this is most important to make this a success. Every team member must see the advantages of the new methodology. Furthermore, everybody must be an ambassador and therefore should have sufficient influence on the final product.

·         Notation governance, especially in projects under time pressure, it is so tempting to make an simple diagram in Visio or PowerPoint for a few team members. The role of the custodian is in this important to keep everybody involved!

·         Communicate! A new architecture methodology, notation and tooling has a great impact, not only for the team members but for every stakeholder in the organisation. Take care of informing everybody about results, products and other notifications. We made a number of posters of architecture diagrams for important projects and that helped a lot (see figure 4)

·         ArchiMate 1 and 2, there are two versions of ArchiMate in notation and in Enterprise Architect. At first we decided that we used these notation together. This turned out to be a wrong decision. Not only was it confusing, the tooling has strange behaviour when using the versions simultaneous.

 

Figure 4 Project Poster

Conclusion

The introduction of ArchiMate in combination with tooling was not always easy. There are a lot of options and it was difficult to make the right choice, especially for the methodology. Introducing a new working proceedure was not simple for evberybody. The custodian role helped a lot here. Enterprise Architect in combination with ArchiMate 2.0 turned out to be a good choice. The tooling is easy to use, has sufficient search capabilities, can be adapted easily for document generation and connection with existing applications like SharePoint.

 

 

Published in Case Studies

The Future Airborne Capability Environment (FACE™) Consortium is an aviation focused professional group managed by the Open Group. Recently Sparx Systems contributed a collection of licenses to assist members in their development of the FACE Data Model. The Open Group, via its latest news release and the FACE website thanked Sparx Systems for their assistance:

"[Enterprise Architect has] been instrumental towards the development of the FACE Data Model and DoDAF 2.0 representations of FACE Enterprise Architecture products. In addition we appreciate their assistance in setting up a shared working environment for these efforts."

 

          

 

 

Published in News
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