In this blog series Klaas Heek discusses the possibilities of data analysis from the perspective of seven different IT management roles. In this first blog a question that an IT Delivery or Procurement Manager could ask himself/herself:
Which IT provider do I spend most time on?
What insight do IT managers need to optimally support the business? By ‘optimally' I mean that IT supports the value proposition of the organisation with as little time and money wasted as possible. In doing so, IT aims to keep both the 'factory' running, as well as supporting new business initiatives. You need a waste detector.
It’s all about time
The greatest waste concerns time. For example, the time spent on IT suppliers who don’t need all that attention. That’s easy to say of course, but how do you determine how much time you spend on which IT provider?
One tool could be to classify applications. An example is shown in the figure below. Depending on the extent to which an application is critical to the business and the extent to which it makes a difference compared to the competition, four types of applications are shown.
It can help to identify strategic applications and to enter into strategic and intensive collaboration with the supplier(s) involved, whereby both the business (development) and IT development and operations are included. In the case of business applications, continuity (control) is of the utmost importance and time will mainly be spent on this, etc.
The big problem with classification is the time wasted on the classification process itself. Endless discussions about which box which application should be placed in or how to embed the process in the service management system usually lead to another Excel spreadsheet in the already immense 'sea of files'. If a classification turns into an administrative task without agreements being made and complied with, it is better to stop immediately.
As an alternative, we at Solvinity started with the development of an Enterprise Architecture Graph (EAGraph). A 'graph' is a kind of database where you can connect anything to anything, without having to think about a structure beforehand. You can then release (visual) analyses on the linked elements.
The idea is not to manually classify applications, but to perform an environmental analysis and in this way determine which applications (or IT services in general) are more or less important. This is done by connecting the applications to the business processes they support, linking the business processes to business services, business services to the value proposition, the value proposition to customer segments, etc. But connections are also made 'downwards', so: applications are connected to security and platform services, these are in turn connected to infrastructure services, etc. If we then visualise and analyse this complex network (the graph), insights may arise that help us determine which IT providers actually deserve our time and attention.
Too theoretical? The short video below (1:45) shows an example of an environmental analysis by means of the EAGraph.
Want to know more?
Do you also want more insight into your IT landscape by using modern data analysis tooling? Or do you have questions or comments in response to this blog? In that case, please contact Klaas Heek, Solution Architect at Solvinity.
In the next blog, more about how to visualise and analyse dependencies between business and IT services; a question that particularly concerns IT architects.
About this blog series
In this blog series Klaas Heek discusses the possibilities the EAGraph offers as a data analysis tool. This is done bij seven questions from the perspective of seven different IT management roles:
1. Which IT provider do I spend most time on? - IT Delivery / Procurement Manager
2. What are the dependencies between business and IT services? - IT Architect / CIO
3. Where is our confidential data? - Security & Compliance Manager
4. In what order do I migrate which systems to the cloud? - Transition Manager
5. How is our IT management model designed? - IT Manager / CIO
6. What is the impact if system x fails? - Business Continuity Manager / CIO
7. How does IT support our digital transformation? - Business Developer / CIO