with John Zachman
Originator of the Framework for Enterprise Architecture (The Zachman Framework™)
People always ask me, “how do you cost-justify Enterprise Architecture?” Technically, cost-justification is an expense-based concept so you can’t cost-justify Enterprise Architecture because Enterprise Architecture is an asset, not an expense. Even tangible assets are difficult to value because the value is deriving from something independent of the asset like how many times can you use the asset per unit of time, or, what is the market willing to pay for the asset. Intangible assets like intellectual property (Enterprise Architecture) are even more difficult to value. A CEO once told me, “anything that has to be cost-justified is not worth doing.” (i.e. Cost-justification is an operational issue, not a General Management issue.) This presentation begins with a story about how the Director of Intelligence for the India (national) Police Service used the Zachman framework to solve a high visibility murder/kidnapping case. It shows how multiple scenarios (Enterprises) can be created to find the most appropriate one. Then it describes the process for using the Zachman Framework to solve General Management problems. It concludes by observing that if you can solve General Management problems, you won’t have to worry about cost-justification. There will be plenty of time and money to solve more General Management problems … and do Enterprise Architecture iteratively and incrementally while you are at it.
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