The Open Group Conference - San Diego 2011

Adopting EA through Infrastructure Optimization: A 'Shunya' without EA and IT Service Management Alignment

Aswin Kumar
Lead Consultant, Infosys Technologies Limited, USA

IT organizations are constantly seeking innovative ways to protect investments on their IT Infrastructure and reduce business risks. It is difficult to exactly predict the time when the obsolete Infrastructure will crash or stop functioning as per the expectations. This results into a technically risky IT environment and potential financial losses to the Business due to extended warranty and support costs.

To proactively address this business problem, IT Infrastructure Optimization paths need to be planned and executed effectively. Typically, the emerging trend is to virtualize the Infrastructure but there may be issues or constraints around Reference IT Architecture compliance, Information Security or other IT Portfolio Management issues that are required to be addressed well in advance. This creates a ‘Shunya’ (meaning a ‘void’) in the execution strategy without close alignment between Enterprise Architecture (EA) and IT Service Management (ITSM) strategy and guidelines.

Investments can be made to standardize the aging Infrastructure based on the criticality of the platforms and applications but it more than likely that this approach will not enable the future business goals of the Organization. The strengths of Enterprise Architecture and IT Service Management can be leveraged to assure a full proof approach towards Infrastructure Standardization. EA can help align and mature the future state capability of IT Platforms and Systems for supporting the business processes and ITSM can essentially be used as a lifecycle framework to align and improve the current state Architecture. The combination of EA and ITSM practices can derive the gaps needed to be filled over time to move towards a business agile state that offers much more flexibility to gradually develop the IT Infrastructure landscape.

For a successful program execution strategy, we require a robust Program Delivery framework that is built on the combination of knowledge and practices from Enterprise IT Architecture, Service Knowledge Management systems (SKMS), IT Governance, IT Contract Management, IT Chargeback reports and other Strategic IT Cost reduction programs. This framework consist of the activities in a phased approach that ensures the controlled implementation of IT Infrastructure Optimization programs and assures other indirect benefits from the adoption of EA.

Author would like to share numerous industry experiences gained on Infrastructure Optimization through various end-to-end consulting engagements using best practices from Enterprise Architecture (TOGAF), IT Service Management (ITIL v3), Agile Product Development and IT Governance.

Aswin Kumar

Aswin Kumar is a Lead Consultant with the Infrastructure Transformation Services Consulting Group at Infosys Technologies Ltd. He has more than 11 years of experience in Infrastructure Optimization, ITSM Processes & Tools consulting / implementation, IT Governance, Software Product Management, and Quality Assurance/Audit. He has helped global organizations to design and implement their IT Infrastructure and Transformation strategies. He has had opportunity to manage programs around Business Change Management, Metrics, Architecture Governance & ISO20000 implementation. Before Infosys, he worked for Fidelity Investments, USA and Management Dynamics.
He is a PMP, Certified in Governance of Enterprise IT (CGEIT), Lead Auditor ISO27001, ITIL v3 Expert certified, ITIL v2 Service Manager, ITIL Practitioner in Change, Configuration & Release Management (IPRC), 6 Sigma Green Belt, HP BTO Tools Implementation Certified. He is an Engineer from Nagpur University, India and holds a Post Graduate Certificate in Business Management from XLRI Jamshedpur, India.

Some of his key engagements recently were:

  • Infrastructure Architecture Services Governance/ IT Effectiveness Strategy & three year roadmap planning for a US based Global Financial major using a proprietary methodology created through amalgamation of TOGAF/ CobiT/ ITILv3/ OPM3 best practices.
  • IT Financial Management & IT Chargeback transformation for the world’s largest Financial Securities Clearing and Settlement services provider in Wall Street, USA
  • ITSM Assessment & roadmap planning for a Global Aircraft Manufacturer and a world leader in the civil transport Aircraft marketplace.
  • Business Change Methodology design & SAP License Management Process Consulting for the world's leading Crop protection/Seed care products & Turf manufacturer headquartered in Continental Europe.
  • Currently engaged as the Infrastructure Standardization Governance Program Director for a large US based Financial Services and Credit Cards provider

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