A while ago, I published an article in the IRM UK newsletter on business process modelling. In the article, I explain the value of and relation between different kinds of process models. I also propose to use customer journeys to guide strategic choices and investments in process (and other) improvements. In this post, I briefly summarise the key messages of the article and elaborate on how to use customer journeys as a guide for your strategic investments.
Why doesn’t my product sell online Tom? I’ve done everything by the book! I created a nice shop; I’ve added a lot of fancy pictures and good descriptions. People can pay online via Paypal and credit card and shipping is done in a jiffy. Amount sold last month: zero, nada, nothing, not even a pennie. Please Tom, what am I doing wrong?
Ultimately, society as a whole and business in particular are all about relationships. Then, success - or in the more personal area, happiness - is measured by how well one can establish and maintain personal and long-lasting relationships.
Within the traditional business context, the primary relationship is usually seen to be that of a company with its customers. But let's turn this around:
The primary business relationship is that of a person with a company of his choice.
Enterprise architecture, on its own delivers no value. As illustrated in my blog on outside-in architecture, the final goal of enterprise architecture is to design structures that create business value.
Therefore enterprise architects operate on the link between strategy and execution, connecting the investment chain with the operational value chain. To be able to improve the structure of enterprises, enterprise architects have to collaborate with business executives, investment portfolio managers, project teams and operational people as illustrated in the following picture:
In this blog I want to share my insights on how I see these collaborations happening in practice. Be aware that I will explain the collaborations top down, which in practice will often not be the case. In my experience, I mostly jump in at the project level to create early value and continue my journey from there on.
As an enterprise architect, I ask myself continuously the question how I can contribute to the creation of business value for the enterprise. How can we design or improve structures that enable the enterprise to create more value?
The basic model
If we look at an enterprise from a very high level, the basic model of an enterprise is to turn the money of investors in business value for customers, in collaboration with partners in the supply chain.
If we want to take the word ‘enterprise’ in our job titles seriously, I believe we should change our mental model from an inside-out oriented perspective to an outside-in oriented perspective. How can we connect the investment value chain with the operational value chain to create more value for the customer?