Sunday, July 17, 2011

Enterprise Architects Enabling Strategic Global Sourcing

As the lead Architect for my firm at the client we are engaged with, I anchor a weekly pow-wow between our teams and client’s Enterprise Architects. The agenda for the sessions is open, addressing key architectural, technical and process related issues, ideation on best practices and discussions from our respective eco-systems.

During a recent session, Dave, one of the clients EA’s brought up the topic of sourcing and a viewpoint he was building for his CIO. I pointed out to Dave how the sourcing challenge EA’s at this firm are coming to grips with are not unique. I pointed him to my Cutter Journal paper on the topic (Enterprise Architects Enabling Strategic Global Sourcing) and we began brainstorming some of the ideas as it was applicable in the current context.

After the brainstorm I began musing how I hadn’t revisited my views after I had written the paper, over a year and half ago. A few of the background issues continue to plague Enterprise Architecture groups: sluggish economy and lack of hiring means Enterprise Architecture groups are not getting fresh talent. Lack of hiring at the bottom is also impacting nurturing of homegrown talent in client organizations while continued visa restrictions also means Offshoring firms are discerning when it comes to bringing talent more than needed onsite.

I had addressed some of the key issues I had seen at client organizations in the paper:


  • Loss of technical expertise due to sourcing

  • The need to coordinate multivendor scenarios

  • Vendors lacking knowledge of organizational dynamics

  • Vendors lacking specific business context

  • Vendors not up to date on organizational processes, acronyms, and jargon

Since I wrote the paper, I have continued to be engaged with other clients and Enterprise Architects, who continually voice views on similar challenges I had highlighted in the paper. As I continue to brainstorm on the topic, I might revisit the views in the paper. Do send in your comments too.