Delivering operational excellence with innovation: Enterprise services architecture for enterprise resource planning

Overview:

Today, islands of automation, growing IT complexity, governance pressures and budget reductions are IT realities that hamper the ability of small and large organizations to embrace new business practices and technological innovation.

Today, islands of automation, growing IT complexity, governance pressures and budget reductions are IT realities that hamper the ability of small and large organizations to embrace new business practices and technological innovation. As organizations look for better ways to achieve competitive differentiation, market responsiveness and operational excellence, they often find their existing IT landscapes too complex, inflexible and costly to adapt to evolving business conditions. Even if organizations can afford the resources, time and effort it takes to change and enable new practices, all those might prove too extensive to justify the value of the investment. IT — often regarded as a monolithic, rigid, slowmoving or foreign entity by many businesspeople — must be aligned with business needs and evolve with changing market demands to enable future innovation, agility and excellence.

The growing importance of IT architectures has led many IT executives to rethink traditional approaches and seek better, smarter, and more efficient ways to serve their organization’s needs. The adoption of services-oriented architecture (SOA) is central to becoming more responsive and agile. An SOA not only helps organizations address short-term needs — such as lowering IT costs, improving quality of service and enhancing existing IT systems — but also, and more importantly, provides a flexible, adaptive and open IT foundation that can accommodate changing business practices, market dynamics and competitive challenges

This white paper is intended for IT executives and line-of-business management. It introduces business strategies, trends and issues related to enterprise resource planning (ERP), financial management, operations management and human capital management (HCM) that drive the consideration of enterprise services architecture (ESA). It also examines the importance of such architecture and the role it plays in guiding organizations to create value, improve efficiency and respond to evolving business needs in ERP — on any scale and for any industry. The document then illustrates and compares a number of deployment examples with and without ESA and clarifies why businesses are adopting an enterprise services approach to compete effectively in a dynamic marketplace.

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