EA and IT Service Management
I completed my USA trip with a visit to the EA team at Miami University. For the uninitiated (as I was), don't confuse this with the city in Florida: Miami University is in Oxford, Ohio, and takes its name from that of the local Native American tribe.
The EA team at Miami is newer than the other teams I visited on this trip. Still, they have managed to achieve quite a lot in the few years of their existence. Their CIO has tasked them with mapping the current state of the five domains (Business, Information, Applications, Infrastructure and Security) and they have made good progress with this.
Their Enterprise Architect chose to use simple tools for this task. By using Google sheets to collect data, they could crowd source much of the information, getting input from the staff within each org unit who know the details of which applications are used to deliver which capabilities. This had a secondary effect of publicising the work of the EA team within the University and giving people some sense of involvement.
They have also written some PHP and AngularJS scripts to give simple graphical views of this information. The following example shows the three levels of business capabilities for Learning, with each level three capability mapped to the central IT applications that support it.
I was particularly interested by the way the team are integrating EA with the ITIL service management initiative. They have entered capabilities into their Configuration Management Database (CMDB) so that they can map ITIL services to business capabilities. The applications are already in the CMDB, of course, so the mapping of applications to capabilities can also be represented in the CMDB. The CMDB also has entries for each interface between applications, with links to more information on the EA web site.
I’d like to know more about how to relate ITIL services to EA business capabilities. It would seem that an ITIL service should represent a business capability, which would imply that the ITIL service catalogue should ideally be a subset of the business capabilities captured by EA. At Edinburgh, our service teams are finding it challenging to decide which services should be represented at which level of our ITIL catalogue. Perhaps EA techniques might be able to help.