Business Alignment

Help empowered teams to understand the business - and vice versa

"Truly empowered teams (...) need the business context that comes from the leadership" is a key quote from the standard-setting book Empowered. It's not straightforward for development teams, and might put them out of their comfort zone - but it's understood to be a key ingredient in modern software development. Similarly, product leaders & modern Enterprise Architects strive to align business with IT, for faster communication, synergies, governance and other reasons.

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True business alignment means connecting worlds

From a technology point of view, it's often hard to understand what the business side is doing - and vice versa. Yet, companies that establish this mapping have a sustainable long-term advantage.

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How VSM can help

VSM is designed with a simple, yet powerful idea to bridge the worlds. Thinking in Products is the software industry gold standard, clearly superior to classical project thinking. Yet, often the notion of a Product is required to understand - but not sufficient to address concerns like ownership. Domains are a straightforward way to capture this internal break-down.

VSM customers can choose whether they propagate business mapping "from the source", e.g. via CI/CD metadata, or as a manual governance process. Combined with LeanIX EAM, they can obtain an end-to-end mapping from business capability all the way into software development.

What's in it for me?

As a member of a product team: Understand external business context & internal segregation to build better products.

As a product leader: Double-down on empowered teams while speaking the language of the business.

As an enterprise architect: Address key questions (e.g. technology compliance & risk) via automation while creating synergies between product & corporate IT.

As an engineering leader: Evaluate whether software delivered by your teams and underlying technology are supporting business as expected.

Example - Tangible outcomes

Heatmaps bridging technical & ownership information to domains or business contextHeatmaps bridging technical & ownership information to domains or business context

Heatmaps bridging technical & ownership information to domains or business context

One inventory for key product information - standalone or imported from LeanIX EAMOne inventory for key product information - standalone or imported from LeanIX EAM

One inventory for key product information - standalone or imported from LeanIX EAM

A knowledge graph that enables you to navigate dependenciesA knowledge graph that enables you to navigate dependencies

A knowledge graph that enables you to navigate dependencies

What do I need?

The Business Alignment use case relies on having a Software & Cloud Service Discovery in place.

Product & market understanding either Product Leadership or Enterprise Architects need to supply an initial product list with key attributes.

Baseline understanding of the technical proficiency of your engineering department. Are domains already in place you can piggyback? Do we have metadata representing business context, e.g. in CI/CD - or do we need to start fresh?

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Hint

Build up a domain model early on. Mapping their work directly to business products might be uncomfortable for software teams, and make you miss out on alignment chances, e.g. towards support.

How do I get there?

With LeanIX EAM

If you are an EAM customer, the following steps are suggested:

  1. Import your application list as products from LeanIX EAM

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Important

The VSM - EAM integration is extensible, see Extending An Integration. Yet, make sure to have a clear understanding what information matter to your product teams.

There might be cases where the native mapping of EAM Application to VSM Product might not be the most appropriate - please Connect With Us to understand best practices for your case.

  1. Create an initial domain model via the Inventory
  2. Decide how to connect domains & products to software artifacts - most prominent options are:

Without LeanIX EAM

Follow the steps above, but with a manual import of products


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