Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Back to the Future - The Role of an Enterprise Architect

My first question on ebizQ's Enterprise Architecture forum is an interesting one that was inspired by a blog entry titled Enterprise Architects' Role In Aligning IT With Business by Forrester Research VP Gene Leganza as he ponders what the Enterprise Architect role would look like in the future based on what he is seeing happening today. 

While it's a question worthy of serious thought, I believe that the role of an Enterprise Architect (EA) has always been and will always be to implement an organization's business strategy with a supporting and complementing IT strategy. Different companies have different names and reporting structures for this role depending on their size, vertical, and geographical location. Some call the role an EA, some a business architect, some a chief architect, and some call that role a CTO or CIO, but the role always exists. The biggest game changer that I see is that our global, innovation-based economy is just accelerating the pace at which "EA"s that don't fit this role are exposed and replaced.
* Originally posted on ebizQ's Enterprise Architecture forum on February 23, 2011.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Have Cloud... Bye bye IT Department?

It's been a while since I've participated in the ebizQ forums. But I'm back now! :)

Today's question on the Cloud Computing forum was whether the advent of the cloud will one day make IT departments a thing of the past - especially for "smaller" companies. Will the cloud at some point allow smaller companies to do away with their IT department?

I think the question needs some further clarification. Is it do away with the IT Department or with IT Capital Assets?

Although it may seem trivial on the surface, there is a major distinction between the two. An IT department has more than just physical "IT" or technology. It has people and processes as well. Cloud Computing might be able to replace all of the technology but not all of the people and processes. So, my answer is "Yes" to doing away with IT Capital Assets but "No" to doing away with the IT Department.

By the way, way back in early 2010, Gartner had made the bold proclamation that one-fifth of all businesses will own absolutely no IT assets come 2012. While I don't know if that number (20%) will hold true, I would like to point out that they too mentioned "IT assets" as opposed to IT department.

* Originally posted on the ebizQ Cloud Computing forum on February 9, 2011.