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The spaghetti incident: How enterprise architecture is helping the Middle East take control of its IT

Ben Rossi | June 12, 2013
In 2009, DP World in the UAE decided to set up its own IT department separate from the shared services the global organisation operates. But with the inheritance of systems and technologies came the realisation of inconsistencies and redundancies. It turned to an enterprise architecture (EA) tool to obtain a complete view of its IT.

"Accidental architecture evolves over time into a complex, costly, difficult, and slow-to-change information systems architecture, which has to react to changing priorities and strategies," he says.

"The vision is a coherent set of standardised building block-based business processes, applications, data and infrastructure, intended to ensure quality and predictability of core transactions, along with flexibility, agility and efficiency."

Joseph Foster, Corporate Enterprise Architect, SEHA, calls silos of processes, tools, data, and more importantly, knowledge, the "enemy within" for many large organisations.

It is the enterprise architect's responsibility, he says, to break down those barriers, put existing resources to efficient use, and to build new services and infrastructure that could be leveraged by different verticals.

"Every large organisation, by the virtue of being an enterprise, has some kind of architecture," Foster says. "More often than not, this default architecture is scattered, less efficient and not well understood — at the very least, implicit.

"A well-run EA practice will make this architecture efficient and explicit. They will make the interdependencies and relationships among various systems and verticals more visible."


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