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  1. Roll Call (by timezone - East to West)

  2. Scribe Shout-out - It's easy to scribe: How To Scribe Itana Calls Guide

  3. Agenda Bash

  4. Article Review: Architecting the Architecture: Necessary Steps for Setting Up an EA Practice

  5. Itana Org Updates (if any)

    1. Working Group Updates

      1. Wiki Refresh Working Group

      2. Women in EA Working Group

      3. New2EA Working Group

      4. API Working Group

      5. Business Architecture Working Group

    2. Steering Committee Update

      1. Coaching and Mentoring

Full program on the 2020-2021 Itana Program page. All calls (including working groups) are listed on the Events page.


Announcements - Itana News, Working Group Report out

Topic Title (Article Review: Architecting the Architecture: Necessary Steps for Setting Up an EA Practice)

Feedback from Jim’s EDUCAUSE Article:

Facilitated by Jeff Kennedy, Louis King, and Beth Schaefer

Louis King-Yale:
Riffing on what resonated:   

New CIO,  Had an existing practice, former relationships with digital transformation.  Jim talked with CIO about the opportunity for EA, but there was some resistance.  Focus on operational excellence.  Produce results across the entire portfolio.  Yale IT and Business did not have the maturity to play as together.

Introduced EA capabilities.  Maturity. Capability map reflected aligned to his CIO vision.

Jeff Kennedy-University of Auckland: 

Culture, Context, Skills:

Culture:  Lots of cultures, and mega culture, toxic environments were architects.  Conscious leadership group, above the line, below the line, defensive...want to be right.  Seeking fun and knowledge..seeking to be safe.  Human synergistic, Cultural Norms.  References to TOGAF advice around stakeholder analysis. 

Role of architects:  Job to bring people together, metrics, net promoter score, Write down the charter of the EA practice

Variability of capabilities.  Where the engagement sits…..Chaotic Sandpit, Healthy Hot House, Disciplined Engine Room.

A full menu of the SFIA skills EA, Strategic Planning, Consultancy, Emerging Technology Monitoring,

Above and below the line:

Softer skills

Beth Schaefer-University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Takeaway:  Timing and know the landscape. Looking for the common points of alignment in the organization and looking where to start:

Align with efforts with:

  • Data Governance
  • IAM
  • Enterprise/Core Sytems (New CRM)
  • Customer Experience

Top-down governance:  standards are influencing the business environment.    

Better maturity to have more architecting capabilities.  What problems are we trying to solve?

What resonated with you?

Mona Guerra: 
Due to lack of EA there is high pressure in the Data Integration and IAM area.  There is hope that EA skills can help get out of the current situation. 

Who was the audience for the article?

The genesis of the article was executive leaders who asked Jim about what was needed to start an EA practice. 

What about the individual contributor?  How to make an impact?

Motivated by a CIO.  

The introduction of the article is very common.  Key takeaway...know your culture.  Recently a restructure...scoped EA to be in central IT.  Have achieved some success.  Started to expand to other units.  Use UW value chain.  Involving EA involved in portfolio management.

Chris Eagle
Focus on the differences in higher education.  Often don’t have the executive skills but lead from behind and the side.

EA does not relate to the title but in skills and approach.

Trying to influence decisions.

In the middle of the WorkDay implementation…..shaping the implementation now.

Many different paths towards using EA.  UM:  Shifting 5 CIO in 3 years.  EA fell apart.  No formal EA group.  Had to move in a whole new pathway.  Involved in governance, and strategy, although we don’t call it EA.  Meeting:  Consistency of integration of SaaS services.  All done without a formal EA group.

Going through transitions but doing things that keep you in the game and you have to adjust.  The game is never up.  Continue to lean in through changes.

Chris and Louis are your EA practices well aligned? 

Reasonably well aligned to the maturity levels of the organization. 

4 out of 5 and he would like to get back to a formal EA practice.

Adam Caimi-Penn State:
CIO turnover.  5 CIOs in 3 years.  Agenda item.  Good support from the top.  Resonating with Adam, the idea of scoping the practice.  What are the business outcomes desired?  Rationalizing the services.  Strategy, getting higher into the decision-making stack.

How is EA related to Lean? 

EA in higher Ed.  Strong dependency between EA and management.  HE usually has low maturity in management.  Resource management.  Decision making.  EA usually thinking like a management consultant which leads to Lean.  What are the practices and tools that can help the managers around you even when it sounds presumptuous?

After reading Jim's article and participating in this session, some of us feel better about being an individual contributor to our EA efforts even if we don't have a formal EA effort in our organizations.  We are aware that we are doing some type of architecture even if we don't call it that.  


From Louis King :

From J.J. Du Chateau (Wisconsin) : One could interpret as the organizational location of the EA group (if one exists) and where the EA practice is viewed as fitting into processes, etc.

From Dana Miller : Use to have a charter

From Louis King : EA Maturity Model

From Louis King :

From Mary Stevens : +1 to what Chris is saying

From J.J. Du Chateau (Wisconsin) : Historical, I've seen EA asked to "fill the gaps" where the org didn't have the skills or were not yet fully formed disciplines:  portfolio mgmt., process improvement, user experience, IT planning, etc.

From J.J. Du Chateau (Wisconsin) : Then EA pulling out as those areas mature w/in the org

From Brian DeMeulle : @ UC San Diego, we have both a Continuous Improvement team (LSS) and a separate EA team. While alignment between those two functions is necessary those are distinct and should be separate.

From Christopher Eagle : I have to run. thanks for the conversation and great article!
From Alberto Mendoza : sorry folks, I have a 3pm I need to run to.  See you around

From ADAM CAIMI : need to run.  Thanks again Jim!

From Nina Fox : The article was sooo valuable Jim, thanks so much for writing it!

From Stelios Bourmpoulias (UM) : Thank you Jim for the holistic approach of your article!

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