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 How to Join ODG 

How can organizations move to an Outcome Driven state?

Business outcomes need to be addressed in achievable, practical increments. If they are too large in scope, they may be dismissed as being out-of-touch with everyday missions, or even too big to achieve shared understanding and agreement across stakeholders. An example is the DoD's huge business enterprise architecture (BEA), which has not produced the results anticipated.  Right sizing is an essential element of effective outcome driven EA.  Another important element is having a leadership sponsor for an outcome – if you don’t have that, the project is doomed for failure, so give it up and find another outcome with a sponsor.

EA has to add value that impacts and informs budgets. One approach is to look at the budgeting process in your organization and identify where enterprise architects can best inform decisions. Start where you are, look at enterprise mission value chain, and back EA support into that and how it can help.

It's also important that the business identify how success is measured, so EA support can be aligned to impact that measurement.  It works to deliver this support in ‘just enough’ fashion that still has impact, because having just enough impact is far better than impacting nothing. 

Every business plan should include an IT thread of enhancements. To be highly effective, IT won't sound like IT, but rather like direct business support.  Architects can act as advisors to draw out requirements ("desirements" or better yet “capabilities”), and keep the business focused on getting the right vision.

Every outcome driven architectural deliverable and artifact needs to be designed for consumption, and checked that it is useable by those driving towards and building the solution for the business.

Bottom line guidance:  EA is a planning mechanism - is it helping the enterprise effectively plan for the To-Be state?

Moving forward with Outcome Driven Government community

The meeting participants engaged in a general discussion about their impressions and comments on the presentation content and the discussions ensued. There was general consensus among the Government attendees in the value of establishing the Outcome Driven Government community, and supporting its development.  There was also a consensus that the patience of Government leaders for supporting traditional EA is shrinking, and that architects need to be creative to show their relevance and value -- today's stakeholder expect actionable results.

One participant suggested that there might be common outcomes and measures that could be identified and be useful across agencies.  These might, for example, include cost, responsiveness and delivery time. It was agreed among the participants that it might be too premature to do that now, but that the group should work towards an Outcome Driven standards, using customer successes and case studies as the basis to develop a framework.

Next Steps

The audience of Government practitioners wanted a deeper dive on real examples and case studies on outcome driven deliverables for Government. This might include helping the community better understand how stage planning is applied, how it is made actionable, and what success looks like. It would also help Government to understand how agile and outcome driven methods can be applied to EA.  Workshops, webinars, and other events will be the method to present these examples and case studies to a broader audience of Government practitioners.

ODG announced that the next event planned would be a Workshop in the first week of August, with a focus on presenting case studies of successful Outcome Driven and agile methods, as well as a drill down on the first stage of strategic planning from Gartner.
The audience also discussed the outcomes for the Outcome Driven Government community, including defining deliverables and including a broader audience of Government practitioners. It was suggested that sub-committee might be established to do this and present recommendations to the entire group at a later date.