by George Davies, MooD International
After a number of years deploying Performance Management systems to help businesses and their leaders understand where they are and what is going on we are seeing an important shift. Businesses are now changing, divesting, transforming and growing again. As part of this it is no longer enough to deliver IT services and solutions but it is also now necessary to understand and be able to ‘touch and see’ the business impact, business outcomes and business service delivered by such systems.
The ability to do this is changing the way internal services are delivered, the way external suppliers deliver service and the way multiple businesses work together to deliver a joined up, end to end business service and its related outcomes.
The shift that is now happening is one that is very important in achieving this.
Whilst a year or two ago it was enough to have ‘cool’ visualisations of data to start to get an understanding how a business is operating, where initiatives are up to and what is going on – this is no longer enough. It is not sufficient. It doesn’t deliver clear insight. It doesn’t signpost the direction of change – and importantly it doesn’t clearly link the activity that is under way with the achievement of the business outcome, the business service or the business result.
The shift that is occurring is that such systems have to be able to ‘understand’ the business domain, the Customer’s operating model, the business architecture of the programme or business, the cause and effect of changes in the business and the impact on other areas.
So, the change, which is fundamental that we are seeing is the role of the ‘business architecture’ or the ‘business operating model’ in such systems. This is the layer that provides the detailed understanding of the business components that are important, how they relate to one another and the causal impact on a component over there when a change occurs over here. It is this layer that provides the intelligence, the insight into how the components of the business are connected, how they affect one another, what happens when changes occur – and importantly their impact up and down the chain, left to right, from projects, assets, infrastructure, risks, operational activity right up to the business outcomes, the business services or the business results.
Business performance systems require a ‘logic layer’ beneath the visualisation that is domain relevant, a layer that truly details the architecture of the organisation or company. A layer which ‘joins up’ the moving parts up and down the delivery chain – a layer that makes every activity, every IT system, every process relevant to the achievement of the business outcome, business service or business result.
This is the key.
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