Digital TransformationTransformation Practices

Credit Suisse: Enterprise Architecture for Digital Transformation

Credit Suisse documents a set of blueprints and an activities model for how to define and implement Digital Transformation Roadmaps.

The Enterprisers describe Digital Transformation as:

“the integration of digital technology into all areas of a business, fundamentally changing how you operate and deliver value to customers.”

This is a goal that is simple in principle but difficult in implementation. Larger enterprises especially face many challenges including the complexity of their existing IT estate, and many organizations both large and small wrestle with the primary issue of successfully linking their IT investments to their business strategy.

Simply redefining that challenge under a new heading of Digital Transformation won’t address this underlying problem. Organizations need a structured, repeatable process for doing so, and the imperative for Digital Transformation can act as the catalyst to establish such a structure.

Mapping Business Strategy to Technology

The Digital Transformation People describe the Digital Transformation Pyramid, a visual way to define the structures for connecting top level business model strategy through corporate change management and ultimately technology implementation, to understand what key corporate patterns may be weak or missing.

It’s often the case that organizations are overly focused on level three ‘Enabling Technologies’, wholly associating Digital Transformation with one or more particular technologies, such as RPA, Chatbots or CRM.

These are of course the methods of implementation but without factoring in the whole pyramid and establishing affecting relationships between them, there is nothing to guide them towards specified business outcomes, and without that, they can easily become an expensive exercise that achieves very little benefit for the organization.

Enterprise Architecture

Credit Suisse offers a presentation that explains a detailed approach for establishing these relationships, and through their own case study explains how they are applied.

Design Reviews Using the Business Capability Model is an OMG presentation, given by Siddesh Mahadik, VP IT Strategy and Business Architecture division at Credit Suisse, which details their ‘eBCM’, a blueprint of enterprise architecture activities that plan and manage strategic technology implementations.

Slide 7 describes the headline message, the linking role Business Architecture plays in connecting Business Strategy to IT implementation, in a referenceable, measurable form.

Note the two-way direction of the information flow – This means it works as a ‘closed loop’ feedback mechanism, an ongoing review process cascades the goals of Strategy down through the Business and then the IT design, and it ripples back up in the form of project plans and investment requirements.

The remainder of the presentation then provides a detailed walk through of how this expands out across their enterprise architecture designs and activities, how they manage this cycle of work.

Digital Transformation Roadmaps

Overall Credit Suisse documents a set of blueprints and an activities model for how to define and implement Digital Transformation Roadmaps, made up of the following main streams:

  1. Business Architecture – Slide 9 lays out how they utilize Business Architecture, in particular it is tailored to their requirements through their ‘eBCM‘ model. Slide 11 shows the reporting teams and process.
  2. A Feature Flow of RequirementsSlide 14 describes the core design process, a process of ‘front to back’ overlaying of the Logical model across the Physical one. Slide 13 shows how this produces a Features List, for example T1 – A Trade Store Abstraction Layer.
  3. A Decision TreeSlide 15 explains how they walk through a decision tree review of applications. Slide 16 is the list of criteria they apply, and Slide 20 shows how they escalate the feedback from these to the relevant application owners.
  4. Custom Tooling – Slide 21 shows how they set up a governance portal, with help guides and implementation blueprints, including their Business Architecture Blueprints, like the central BCM – Business Capability Model.
  5. Communications – Slide 22 follows on from this to show how this powered successful, and accurate, reporting of how adoption of program changes were being understood and actioned.
  6. Timescales Roadmap – Slide 23 demonstrates how they map and manage all of these activities through a timeline planning roadmap.

Presentation Slides

Use the arrows at the bottom to move through the slide deck.


Slide 3 | Introduction.

Slide 09 | lays out how they utilize Business Architecture, in particular it is tailored to their requirements through their ‘eBCM‘ model.

Slide 11 | shows the reporting teams and process.

Slide 14 | describes the core design process, a process of ‘front to back’ overlaying of the Logical model across the Physical one.

Slide 13 | shows how this produces a Features List, for example T1 – A Trade Store Abstraction Layer.

Slide 15 | explains how they walk through a decision tree review of applications.

Slide 16 | the list of criteria they apply.

Slide 20 | shows how they escalate the feedback from these to the relevant application owners.

Slide 21 | shows how they set up a governance portal, with help guides and implementation blueprints, including their Business Architecture Blueprints, like the central BCM – Business Capability Model.

Slide 22 | follows on from this to show how this powered successful, and accurate, reporting of how adoption of program changes were being understood and actioned.

Slide 23 | demonstrates how they map and manage all of these activities through a timeline planning roadmap.

Slide 24 | Conclusion.

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