In a recent blog post, I mentioned that hiring and developing the right people for EA’s strategic aspirations will be a bottleneck, and as a result, development and certification programs will become a popular topic of conversation. Well it didn’t take long for some client inquiries to come in and show me that while I may be on the right track with that prediction, there's more to the topic than one might think. From the looks of it, the challenge runs deep: Development is about more than skill sets and certifications - it’s also about real career path - and elevating the job to the level of "profession" akin to those that architect our buildings. To get some more information, I called Dr. Brian Cameron, Founding President of The Federation for Enterprise Architecture Professional Organizations (FEAPO) and Program Director of Penn State’s Master of Professional Studies in Enterprise Architecture. Here’s what he had to say:
Q:Our clients are interested in developing their teams as opposed to hiring, due to challenges with funding and attracting talent. What are members of the EA community doing about this? Is it more common than not?
For the last four years, Forrester has run a longitudinal study on the “state of EA” — tracking the changes in focus, priorities, etc., since 2008. Our clients use it to get a sense of whether their progress and plans for EA is on par with their peers.
Based on the year-over-year comparison of the data in the upcoming “State of EA: 2013” document, as well as some anecdotal evidence I’m seeing in client interactions, I’ve got five predictions about what I expect to see happen with EA practices this year:
They’re going to kill off the usual EA metrics. They’ll do it even though technically they’re not supposed to (and they may not realize they’re even doing it). Our data shows that standard EA metrics (maturity, perception, value, etc.) are less and less likely to actually be used, even though they’re an extremely popular topic of conversation. A recent experience of mine confirmed that even when trapped in a room for a few hours, not even industry peers can agree on a set of common metrics. Powerful metrics are too company- and initiative-specific to standardize. And in the end, the usual metrics might become irrelevant because . . .