Business Capability Models

A key aspect of the Fragile to Agile approach to enterprise architecture is aligning business and technology design. To achieve this alignment, Fragile to Agile uses a Business Capability Model (BCM) which describes what the business does as opposed to how (business process models) or who (organisational models) does it. As what an organisation does changes much less frequently than how or who does it, a BCM is inherently stable and therefore a sound base on which to map an organisation’s business and technology architectures.

The unique level of rigour applied to the development of a Fragile to Agile BCM makes it ideally suited for both business consulting and deep technical design. It provides a single tool that can seamlessly flow from business consultation to technology architecture design and maintain business engagement throughout the process. This not only provides a shared language and collaboration tool to facilitate these discussions but is fundamental to converting business strategy into execution.

The following diagram is a partial extract from the architecture view of a Business Capability Model for a public sector environment department:

BCM Faded Extract

More importantly when combined with other proprietary techniques in our approach, the Fragile to Agile BCM can be used to determine which business capabilities, and therefore services, can be shared across an organisation. This is a critical design element when embarking on a Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) solution strategy which modularises technology to assemble prebuilt and tested components to deliver greater design and business agility.

Finally, the Fragile to Agile BCM is used to define the correct level of modularisation for an organisation’s SOA initiative and defines boundaries for business process and data responsibilities. We refer to this concept as service containers and it solves the service granularity and process/service boundary design issues for BPM/SOA target architectures. These are fundamental design decisions for BPM/SOA and therefore critical success factors in whether or not its promised business agility is realised.

The Fragile to Agile Business Capability Model not only enables these critical design decisions but is fundamental in aligning all other design domains.