The Benefits of Using a Business Analysis Framework

By using a Business Analysis Framework (see Figure 1) we can establish:

  • Business Goals
  • Business Views
    • Abstractions (areas/views)
    • Perspectives (separation of concern)
  • Business Definitions
    • Business Information
    • Business Roles & Responsibilities
    • Business Rules
    • Business Operations
    • Business Infrastructure

Figure 1. The Business Analysis Framework

The Success Framework

The Success Framework builds upon “A Framework for Information Systems Architecture”, by John Zachman published in an 1987 article in the IBM Systems journal.

The Zachman Framework summarizes a collection of perspectives involved in enterprise architecture. These perspectives are represented in a two-dimensional matrix that defines along the rows the type of stakeholders with the columns the aspects of the architecture.

The Zachman Framework is an Enterprise Architecture framework, which provides a formal and highly structured way of viewing and defining an enterprise. It consists of a two dimensional classification matrix based on the intersection of six communication questions (Why, Who, How, What, When, and Where) with six rows according to rectification transformations.

The Success Framework builds upon the Zachman framework, but also extends it with two additional perspectives/views (see Figure 2):

  • The Objectives/Scope perspective; the strategic view
  • The result/benefit perspective; the value view

Figure 2. The Success Framework

Abstractions and Perspectives

Each perspective focuses attention on the same fundamental questions, then answers those questions from that viewpoint, creating different descriptive representations (i.e., models), which translate from higher to lower perspectives. The basic model for the focus (or abstraction see Figure 3) remains constant. The basic model of each column is uniquely defined, yet related across and down the matrix. In addition, the seven categories of business architecture components, and the underlying interrogatives that they answer or address, form the columns of the Success Framework and these are:

  1. The data description – What
  2. The function description – How
  3. The Network description – Where
  4. The people description – Who
  5. The time description – When
  6. The motivation description – Why
  7. The results/benefits description – Value

Figure 3. The Abstractions/Views

The Business Anatomy

By using the focus area/abstraction questions, we can translate these questions into relevant business parts that forms the business anatomy (see Figure 4).

  • WHY – Represents the Leadership focus which in turn focuses on vision & mission, values, strategies & goals, policies
  • WHO – Represents the Organization focus and its focuses on roles & responsibilities, competence & capabilities, relations, development & satisfaction
  • WHAT – Represents the Information & Analysis focus and its focus on information management, measures, and analysis
  • HOW – Represents the Process & System focus and its focus on product & service processes, business process, support processes, functional requirements
  • WHERE – Represents the Infrastructure focus and its focus on locations, requirements, influences, interfaces
  • WHEN – Represents the Timing focus
  • VALUE – Represents the Results focus broken down into customer satisfaction, employee motivation, partnerships, and business results

Figure 4. The Business Anatomy

By using a framework we can mitigate the complexity and provide a holistic approach to translate between different perspectives and views. The framework is also an excellent tool for performing analysis of the current operations and provide a framework for where we want to be in the future.

Figure 5. Multiple stakeholders - Multiple views

Figure 6 illustrates the relationship between different stakeholders and different views.

Figure 6. Matching perspectives and views