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SBM4303 Enterprise Architecture

Assessment Details:

This assessment is designed to assess develop your skills in Enterprise Architecture (EA). You are required to develop knowledge on EA methodology, EA Framework, data model and emerging EA. In completing this assessment successfully, you will be able to know major widely accepted Enterprise Architecture (EA) domains, layers, frameworks and governance, which will help in achieving ULO-1,

ULO-2, ULO-3, ULO-4, ULO-5, and ULO-6, this in turn will help you in achieving CLO-1, CLO-2, CLO-4, CLO-7, and CLO-9, which collectively with other unit learning outcomes will help in achieving GA-2, GA-3, and GA-12.

Report 1.1 (Case Study)

SteelCo is a large steel manufacturing company established several decades ago. Historically, SteelCo grew largely via mergers and acquisitions of smaller companies occupying adjacent or complementary market niches and underwent a number of corporate restructurings. Presently, at the highest level the company is split into two major divisions: Division Alpha and Division Beta. Both divisions are governed from the lean central head office and report their quarterly financial indicators to top business executives for their consideration. However, operationally these divisions represent essentially independent businesses with non-overlapping suppliers, products, customers and markets. Each division is managed by an appointed executive director reporting directly to C-level corporate leadership. Divisions are free to set their own agendas, pursue their own competitive strategies and make their own investment decisions, though major investments must seek approval at the corporate level.

Division Alpha is an established and large-scale, but highly centralized manufacturing shop. It specializes on fabricating a single line of products, which are distributed directly to a narrow circle of wholesale customers over stable supply chain network arrangements. The division has a rather conservative IT investment strategy intended primarily to achieve better automation of existing operations and enable smooth, uninterrupted and efficient business processes. It has a central division-wide IT department employing around 150-180 in-house specialists and also involving about 100-120 external contractors working on a full-time basis. The IT department is responsible for providing necessary IT support across all activities of Division Alpha’s value chain, e.g. production, warehousing, sales and delivery as well as various supporting activities including HR, finance and legal services.

Division Beta has a more complex, dynamic and diversified business model. It offers three core lines of products focused largely on different market segments and customer groups. These product lines require substantially different manufacturing processes, distribution channels, sales approaches and marketing campaigns. However, all products are fabricated from similar raw materials and components procured from the same suppliers. Moreover, customer bases of these products also partially overlap and the department’s leadership is planning to leverage cross-selling opportunities more actively in the future. Organizationally, Division Beta is structured into three major units aligned to its three product lines and an additional supporting unit providing shared division-wide services to the main business, e.g. HR, finance, accounting and IT. Its IT department employs around 450-500 IT staff qualified in different technologies used in the division’s IT landscape. To accommodate with the quickly changing market conditions, Division Beta invests a significant share of its profits in new IT systems and infrastructure. It has an aggressive IT investment strategy aimed at enabling innovative ways of working.

Questions

  1. Write a report on how should SteelCo structure its architecture function in terms of necessary architecture positions?
  2. How many architects does the company need for each of these positions? Provide detailed explanation.

Report 1.2 (Determining the Operating Model of a Multi-Profile Company)

MultiCorp is a diversified, multi-profile company. Essentially, it is a conglomerate company consisting of three diverse strategic units acting as independent businesses under separate brands in different industry sectors: Unit Alpha, Unit Beta and Unit Gamma. MultiCorp is governed from the central head office, which oversights the three subsidiary business units and their financial performance indicators, though without any operational interventions. Each strategic business unit has its own managing director with full discretion and responsibility over its competitive strategy, investment priorities, budget allocation and ensuing yearly profits.

Unit Alpha is in the food manufacturing business. The unit produces and distributes a variety of goods including, but not limited to, vegetables, groceries, meat and dairy products. Each of these product lines requires unique production processes, storage arrangements, transportation approaches and underlying equipment and is organizationally implemented by a separate specialized product department. However, these products are delivered largely to the same circle of customers, including both major retailers and local food shops. All product lines are also served by a number of common unit-wide functions, e.g. HR, finance, accounting, logistics, legal, marketing and sales support.

Unit Beta competes in the restaurant business. Specifically, the unit controls a chain of small fastfood restaurants occupying the low-cost market niche. In total, the chain includes more than 80 restaurants located in different geographies and more restaurants are planned to be opened in the foreseeable future. All restaurants offer same interiors, menus, prices, meals and services to their customers and imply standardized policies, working procedures and supporting equipment. However, each restaurant is run separately by a chief manager responsible for its overall financial well-being and all necessary business processes, e.g. recruiting, training, procurement, cooking, servicing, cleaning and complaints management. With the exception of Unit Beta’s lean central office, where chain-wide branding, marketing and other strategic decisions are made, the restaurants operate independently from each other and even have their own profit and loss statements.

Finally, Unit Gamma runs a chain of resort hotels. These hotels gravitate towards the high-end price segment and offer premium-quality services to their customers. Unit Gamma’s competitive strategy implies improving its brand recognition and achieving consistent customer experience. For this purpose, the unit’s leadership plans to standardize all customer-facing and, to a lesser extent, backoffice processes across all hotels of the chain as well as all its suppliers and service providers. Moreover, Unit Gamma also intends to become “closer” to its customers and build lifelong customer relationships. This strategy requires collecting more information about customers, their individual preferences and transaction histories, aggregating this information globally and leveraging it for providing customized services, launching loyalty programs, developing special offers and promoting personalized discounts.

Questions

  1. What is an operating model of MultiCorp and each of its three strategic business units?
  2. What particular business processes are standardized company-wide and within each of its business units?
  3. What specific types of data are integrated across the whole company and each of its business units?
  4. What is the highest-level structure of the IT landscape in the company and in each of its business units?

Report 1.3

FinCorp is a mid-size financial company. A couple of years ago FinCorp decided to establish a fullfledged EA practice to accommodate with the growing problems around non-transparency of its IT investments and poor business and IT alignment in general. In order to boost its EA initiative, the company decided to purchase a specialized software tool for enterprise architecture. For this purpose, its IT leaders studied the available offerings on the EA tool market, contacted most promising vendors, organized meetings with vendor representatives and listened to their presentations. As a result, FinCorp had selected and acquired a rather powerful and expensive tool for enterprise architecture from a well-known vendor. Then, the company had installed and configured the tool, established a central repository for storing architectural information and sent its architecture team to a special training supplied by the tool vendor. After the training, architects had documented most areas of the organizational IT landscape and associated business processes in the EA repository and started to update this information to keep it current. Architects were also impressed with the modeling, visualization and analytical capabilities offered by their new EA tool.

However, FinCorp’s CIO is pretty skeptical towards the chosen EA tool. He believes that the company is only wasting money on the tool as it is essentially nothing more than a sophisticated repository of current-state information. Furthermore, the tool is used by only 4-5 people in the entire organization (all architects), does not facilitate informed decision-making among business stakeholders in any sense and does not contribute to achieving the original objectives of the EA initiative to improve business and IT alignment.

Questions

  1. What is wrong with the installed EA tool?
  2. Is the tool adding value to FinCorp?
  3. How can the tool be used to facilitate business and IT alignment?
  4. What should be done to maximize the value of the tool for the company?

Report Presentation Style and Writing

Consolidate and compile all your previous efforts from Report 1.1 to 1.2 into a DOC or DOCX report. You should attempt at your best to reflect this quality in the preparation of the report. 

All diagrams and figures should be embedded as part of the report. 

The format of your report should be as follows: A4 size paper, 2.5cm margins on all sides, single-sided, Time Romans or New Time Romans font, 12pt font size, DOC or DOCX format.

What to Submit

Submit one DOC or DOCX file to the OLS course site online submission portal for this course. Submit this file with Portfolio. 

Please name this file as Your ID_Report.DOC or Your ID_Report.DOCX.  

Marking Criteria and Rubric: The assessment will be marked out of 100% and will be weighted 20% of the total unit mark

Marking Criteria

Not satisfactory

(0-49%) of the

criterion mark)

Satisfactory

(50-64%) of the criterion mark

Good

(65-74%) of the criterion mark

Very Good

(75-84%) of the criterion mark

Excellent

(85-100%) of the criterion mark

Case Study (20 marks)

Not identifying the problems, provided solution is very weak.

Problems are identified very briefly, provided solution is acceptable but details missing, briefly examine the

EA

Most of the problems are identified, provide good solutions, examine the EA but major points are missing

All the problems are identified, provides very good solutions, examines the EA

clearly

All the problems are clearly identified, provided excellent solutions and EA very clearly 

Determining the Operating Model of a Multi-Profile Company (50 marks) (10 marks for each question))

Operating model is not identified properly, Comparison is

presented very briefly,

Poorly examine the relation of EA

Operating model is identified but details missing, comparison presented briefly, very briefly examine the relation of EA

Operating model is identified adequately, comparison presented in detail, briefly examine the relation of EA

Shows sound knowledge on Operating model identification, comparison presented in detail, comprehensively examine the relation of EA

Shows full knowledge on Operating model identification, comparison presented in detail, very

comprehensively examine the relation of EA

Report 1.3 (25 marks)

Situations are not identified properly, Provide wrong solutions 

Situation are identified properly, but missing points

More than adequate design, most of the solutions are properly, provided

Comprehensive

analysis of situation and Provide correct solutions with explanation.

Comprehensive

analysis of situation and Provide correct solutions with excellent explanation.

Report

Presentation Style and Writing

(5 marks)

Work generally does not follow the required professional report format.

Many departures from the required professional report format.

Report format is generally consistent throughout including heading styles, fonts, margins, white space, etc.

Report format is at least 80% consistent throughout including heading styles, fonts, margins, white space, etc.

Report format is consistent throughout including heading styles, fonts, margins, white space, etc.