Enterprise Architecture Assignment: Operating Model & EA Tools
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
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
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.
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
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
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
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
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
3. What specific types of data are integrated across the whole company and each of its
4. What is the highest-level structure of the IT landscape in the company and in each of its
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.
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?
According to the research on enterprise architecture assignment, with the help of the IT architecture, organizations align their infrastructure in order to achieve the business objectives (Caceres & Gómez, 2019). Steelco should follow specific architecture to design the IT infrastructure of the organization. From the analysis of the case study done in the present enterprise architecture assignment, it can be found that there are two divisions in the company such as Alpha and Beta. The division alpha is a manufacturing shop as it is established on a large scale. On the other hand, Division Beta is based on a complex business model. This division provides three core lines of products. Both these divisions are maintained by the head office of the company. On the basis of the Infrastructure of the company, it can be said that Steelco needs to adopt enterprise architecture in its business to make sustainable progress. Enterprise architecture is followed by most of the business organizations as it helps to generate an alignment between the IT infrastructure and business objective (Robertson et al. 2018). Along with that, there are many more purposes of Enterprise architecture, therefore enterprise architecture needs to be adopted by the company in order to fulfill their business objective. By adopting enterprise architecture, Steelco can plan and design their IT capabilities. In the division beta of the Steelco, there are around 400 to 500 IT employees. That is why in this case, enterprise architecture will be useful for the company as this IT architecture can structure the IT infrastructure for the company.
From the analysis of the case study, it has been observed in the context of enterprise architecture assignment that there is a need of 200 architects for the company Steelco. This number of IT architects is required because the company possesses a huge number of employees in their two divisions, Alpha and Beta. In the Alpha division, there are divisions like suppliers, customers, markets, and others. On the other side, in Beta's position, there are product lines like the manufacturing process, distribution channels, and others. In alpha there are about 150 to 180 IT analysts, even there are 100 to 120 contractors of the company also present, who work in the company on a regular basis. In Division Beta, the number of employees is 450 to 500. The Beta division is structured into three major units. They are human resources, Information technology, and Accounting. The number of architect selection is very crucial to manage the entire operation (Devadiga, 2017). From this discussion on enterprise architecture assignment, it is clear that in order to maintain each position of the company, 200 architects are required to maintain the IT infrastructure of Steelco.
Unit Alpha: Multi Crop is a multi-profile manufacturing business company but they have other units to serve their customers and consumers. So, unit alpha produces various kinds of food. Not only produces but also distributes well to its destinations. It includes vegetables, groceries, meat, and dairy products, etc.
As stated herein enterprise architecture assignment, it has its production department which consists of various production processes, storage arrangements, transportation approaches, and many more. Then it comes about their customers, they have both major shopping houses and local shops. These products are served with the help of the HR department, accounting, logistics, marketing, and sales.
It is basically a restaurant business. Generally Small fast-food is delivered in the market. This unit includes 80 restaurants all around the geographical map. Each restaurant has a separate chief manager. Recruiting, training, procurement, cooking, and others are the separate units of the restaurant and their profits and losses are also separate.
It is basically run in resort hotels. Nowadays, this unit is improving its brand image to achieve much more customers' focus. The important thing at this time is the unit become "closer" to its customers. This strategy outlined in this section of enterprise architecture assignment requires much information about its customers.
Operating Model: The whole thing is that MultiCrop, which is a well-known multi-profile company. It consists of three diverse strategic units. This separates units that acting as separate industry sectors. These units are Alpha, Beta, and Gamma. Each business has its own management. The operating model is basically one kind of operation which needs many sources of data. This company mentioned in the enterprise architecture assignment has its own managing departments that collect the data from the customers and as well as outside geographical territory.
The Alpha unit mainly deals with food manufacturing. It consists of unique departments that have their own business processes. Mainly business process is a method of collection of data related to the manufacturing content by means of manpower and equipment. Alpha unit processes are addressed by the HR department, financial departments, and the marketing and sales department. In this unit of Multicorp noted in the enterprise architecture assignment, the product's departments are standardized by the authorities in order to maintain the supply chain.
Beta unit process: It is a restaurant business. The business process is a little bit different from Alpha. The Beta has provided with the separate chief manager for all business processes. These business processes are recruiting, training, procurement, cooking, servicing, cleaning, and complaints management. Every restaurant offers the same pricing, same decoration, meals, and so on. Thus, the business policies within the company are standardized within the restaurants.
Gamma unit processes: Gamma consists of resort hotels business. The main business processes are improving its brand and achieving customer experience. Much more information is required for this, like individual preferences and transaction histories, etc. Therefore, it is clear on this enterprise architecture assignment that in this unit of this business leadership attributes are standardized by the authorities of the company.
MultiCrop is a multi-profile company and it has some specific kinds of data. That is the first unit Alpha only deals with foods. So, as noted in the context of enterprise architecture assignment it has all kinds of specific data related to food and on the other hand, the other unit like Beta has only restaurants related information or data and Gamma has hotels related data.
Alpha unit: This unit has some specific data on vegetables, groceries, meat, and more. Then data of production processes, data of storage arrangement, and many others are also managed.
Beta unit: As it runs a restaurant business, it should contain data of local rates and places, etc. Then the data of recruiting, training, servicing, and many others are also important integrated parts of the company. The restaurant of the company is located in 80 different regions due to which Multicorp needs to integrate the information among the other restaurants.
Gamma unit: This unit should have details of hotels’ prices. Data about individual customer presence and transaction details and many others are placed in this category. Budget allocation, investments are the common types of data sharing that takes place within the company. It is discussed in the enterprise architecture assignment that the allocation of budget is the utmost factor through which an organization can utilize its resources properly. Alongside this, in each type of business unit like financing, accounting, marketing data are also shared for the company’s seamless functioning.
Information technology based on computers store the data and transmits manipulation of data. This technology is used within the context of business operations and data charts. Those kinds of data and charts are also used in MultiCrop Company. The investigation on enterprise architecture assignment signifies that this IT sector gives all information related to food processing, mapping of restaurants, and price of different hotels, etc. There are many structures of IT levels landscape in this MultiCrop Company. It is a food processing business and it needs many types of equipment which belong to IT technology. The beta unit has its standard policy which is mainly based on IT. They have a recruiting process, training processes, and many others and Gamma attracts the customers’ focus by means of competitive strategies. This basic information about their customers and services, which cannot be gathered without the help of information technology to customize services, creating loyalty programs, developing special offers for customers, etc. In the Unite Gamma, the Multicorp manages its highest business chain which is of resort hotels. These hotels offer high pricing and premium quality to their customers. Henceforth, in the overall infrastructure of the company as presented in the above context of enterprise architecture assignment, the chains of resort hotels have the highest level of structure.
This EA tool is a new software-based tool. The original name of this tool is the Enterprise Architecture tool (Niemi&Pekkola, 2016). Now almost every large or medium-sized company has this tool. This tool helps to create and manage enterprise architecture. Mainly architectures have used this software. There are more than one advantages of EA tool
- Management – According to some architectural enterprises, they need to be taken and managed their records seriously just like sales or purchase. It is a more specialized tool for management work.
- Consistency – When a new enterprise starts to explore ‘his work in architecture’, this is the best tool for using.
- Administration- The world is upgrading itself on a daily basis, so this software also updates rapidly.
- Reuse- Every organization wants to reuse their products. This tool is reusable.
- Benefits ratio- Every organization wants to get more profit by investing low and wants back more. This tool is very similar to this. It is a very user-friendly tool.
There are some disadvantages as noted below within the enterprise architecture assignment –
- It is very difficult to justify the disadvantages of investing too heavily in resources.
- There is always a tendency to get lost while creating infrastructures.
- There is some lack of ability in the communication system.
For this negative property stated in the enterprise architecture assignment, the CIO of FinCrop thought the company was wasting money on this tool. As in the company, only 4-5 peoples were using this tool.
EA tool is very useful software and has many advantages like Management, Consistency, Administration, and more (Shanks et al. 2018). But it has some disadvantages also like it is very difficult for the investigation; there is a tendency to get lost, lack of ability of communication system. This tool has both advantages and disadvantages. In FinCrop enterprise, only a few peoples are using this tool. Mainly the Architectures are using this software. The CIO of the FinCrop Company thought that the company is wasting time and money on this tool. It is not essential more than a stylish response to the current information. It does not contribute to achieving the main goals of the company. If there are so many architects are present in FinCrop then this EA tool is the best tool ever and can play a huge role in achieving the goals and has more value in the company.
The enterprises are getting more upgraded daily. But this tool has a great value in every large and medium company (Javaid et al. 2017). The alignment of business and IT is the main issue in approximately every organization. The concept of alignment is the idea, which is mainly used in EA frameworks.
This EA tool has so many features and advantages as mentioned below within the enterprise architecture assignment.
- Management – According to some architectural enterprises, they have to keep and manage their record seriously just like sales or purchases. It a more specialized tool for management work.
- Consistency – When a new enterprise starts to explore ‘his work in architecture’, this is the best tool for using.
- Administration- The world is upgrading daily; this software also updates rapidly.
- Reuse- Every organization wants to reuse their products. This tool is reusable.
- Benefits ratio- Every organization wants to get more profit by investing low and wants back more. This tool is very similar to this. It is very user friendly.
This is a brief overview of this EA tool presented in this segment of enterprise architecture assignment. As we know IT sectors are very smart in their maintenances, work procedure, punctuality, etc. This tool has those properties very much that is why it is used to facilitate business and alignment with IT sectors.
The EA tool has a great demand in many organizations. Because this EA tool has many features and advantages. This tool examined in the enterprise architecture assignment is mainly a software-based tool that helps to improve the architecture of the company so that the customers can get the best services in exchange for their buying behaviour. Thus, this is a very simple tool, which has a great contribution to the betterment of the customer value proposition for the welfare of the company.
Every organization wants to get more profit by investing low and wants back more (Lange et al. 2016). This tool is very similar to this. It is very user friendly. It has a great demand among peoples. So, the developers have to give personalized information about this software to introduce those peoples who did not know about this tool, we have to increase interest people to use this tool more. In FinCrop there should be more architects for using this EA tool.
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