System architecture – Things to consider

1. Strategic objective

The strategic objective will be brighteing up. The goal must be seen as a short-and long-term development path.

The objectives must be clear in order to draft development projects. Clear targets include growth (growth in turnover of 20%, three new products annually, cost reductions, development of employee motivation through new working methods).

The objectives must also be communicating so that everyone is clear; Similarly, we must define what is expected to achieve the objectives. Communication is done by creating a company strategy Plan (blueprint).

2. Background work

Background work is an integral part of architectural creation. The background work must include:

  • Sufficient current state analysis (customers, products, processes)
  • Megatrends, Industry Foresight
  • Competition profile/SWOT/PESTLE.

It may occasionally be appropriate to carry out an external market investigation to determine the expectations of the current and emerging markets. Customers ‘ ability and willingness to pay for products or services can open their eyes to see new opportunities.

Background work is also an organizational training for future transformation projects.

3. Skills and Resources

As the system architecture is comprehensive and complete, the project will also be resourdable correctly. The right people will ensure that difficult decisions can also be taken effectively: the financing of the project and the necessary persons will be made available as needed.

The core of the architecture team must be the CEO or, indeed, in the big companies, at least a member of the management team with an adequate view of the company’s strategy process.

To manage your workflow, strategy material, and development programs, you may need to obtain a software tool designed to use it (e.g. Fingertip, Orbus/iServer…).

4. Create a system architecture

The system architecture itself is built as a project – later its maintenance is part of a continuous development effort. The ITIL model or the TOGAF reference framework may, where applicable, be used as a reference frame. The Zachman Cage can also be a good tool.

However, none of the tools can substitute for your own thinking!

The architecture must include:

  • Business
  • Information management Perspective
  • Information Systems
  • Infrastructure

The architecture must be balanced in terms of business and technology.

5. Careful planning

Architectural construction is a very wide-ranging project, so construction needs to be carefully planned. Without good planning, the whole project begins to stretch and be randomly controlled by the current acute situation.

In planning, you should include an external entity that is able to compile a schedule that is disconnected from the company’s internist power games. This ensures a balanced project progression and the best result.

6. Change Management

In a changing competitive situation, organisations seem to have a tendency to stick to existing practices. To overcome this situation, consider the change planning to be included right from the start.

Managed change management clarifies the project’s objectives, impacts on operations and organization, creates policies to identify changes, strengthens roles and responsibilities. You should also take advantage of an existing model in change management (e.g. Kotter 8 Step Model).

The progress of the change must be continuously monitored and deviations must be responded to according to the plan.

Industry 4.0 – What does it mean?

Development of the manufacturing company has progressed to the Industry 4.0 phase. In this case, independent decision-making is used to automate production and reach a new level in terms of quality and capacity control. This technology is based on smart actuators, big data and cloud services. This development phase has been flooded according to the following trajectory:

When the devices are capable of advanced learning based on an increasing knowledge base, the production system can be developed on a new footing. IoT enables continuous data collection and large Data collection. Simulations allow different scenarios to be tested before even exporting to production or in production in the selection of different delivery options. Augmented reality can enhance training or bring new dimensions to analyse deviations and problems.

All of this relies on the effective integration between the various systems, in which case independent equipment and subsystems are in real-time contact with each other. Industry 4.0 will Revoluton production, but not necessarily overnight, but as the old equipment fleet is replaced with a new one. That is why we need a strategic view that the development of production is in the right direction.

System Selection – Do you need an ERP system?

The most economical system is a system that does not need to be implemented …

However, most companies benefit significantly from the integrated system, because experience shows that it supports the growth and development of the company. The integrated system is an ERP system (Enterprise Resource Planning System), but it is more than a planning tool as it’s name suggests: it’s the backbone of business and information management at its best.

The ERP system’s proven benefits include:

  1. Operational planning
    1. SCM – Purchase intensialization, warehouse management
    2. Production control
    3. Customer Service Boost (Customer promise: speed, availability)
  2. Process and data management integration
  3. Processes can be automated more efficiently
  4. Improved data transparency
  5. Data Management Harmonds
    1. Single and common Master data
    2. Common information methods (product groups, etc.)
    3. Clear responsibilities
  6. Managed System Solution
    1. Fewer systems
    2. Less maintainating
  7. Development of reporting
    1. Cost control

 The challenges of acquiring the ERP system are:

  1. The demanding selection of the project
    1. Describe a business model
    2. Describing processes
  2. ISO System Project
    1. A vast and complex project
    2. Extensive impacts
    3. Operational and deployment risks
  3. Change Management
    1. Change management needs to be designed and coordinated
  4. Costs
    1. The cost of the project is high
    2. Requires continuous maintenance

Despite all the foregoing, most companies benefit from the overall system. Better business planning, improved customer service, better management of inventories are things that should interest every company.  

Improved forecasting utilises both the entire supply chain and the economic planning. The realisation of benefits requires the coordination and development of holistic activities (processes) and tools (policies, software, training, support).

The purchase of the system must be taken seriously, invested in it and need to be seen. A workable overall system does not arise by chance but as a result of good planning.

Process modeling-Pandora's Box

Business Process Modeling Operations

Business Process Modeling strives to provide a complete overview of the processes and their integration with each other and more broadly to the strategic goals of the enterprise. Modeling aims to produce a holistic image of the business processes and tasks at the detail level. Modeling is not an end in itself – making a picture because of the image. Modeling is above all:

  • Learning event
  • Theme Interview
  • Strenghts and problems analysis
  • Open Inter-role communication
  • Brainstorming
  • Team building.

The process map is created as a co-product and is a special case of the meeting memo.

Often, the process image needs to be supplemented by surveys, numerical analysis and the collection of documents (prints, documents, work instructions, etc.). These all together form an image of the action.

An essential working stage is the analysis and documentation of development needs. They are based on the findings of documentation and management-defined guidelines. Clear strategy objectives are a backbone of the design of development projects. Without a clear common goal, development projects will be randomly controlled according to local sub-optimizations.

Sometimes, the notation of modelling may have a bigger emphasis (e.g., should we used strictly BPMN). However, our experience is that the notation used is not so important: most importat is that communication is conducted transparently and that the relevant elements are identified and there is ability to document the conducted dialogue.

Development, developing …

Phoster is your partner in the development of business operations. We consult companies in the implementation of the strategy, process development, transformational and information technology areas.

We rely on transformational tools, open dialogs, and systemaolithic modelling. For modeling, we use a tool such as QPR EnterpriseArchitect software. Also, MS vision and IBM Blueworks are familiar, and sometimes even MS PowerPoint can work as a sufficient tool.

Our working method is an open and challenging dialogue and a bold introduction to new ideas.