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18 Bridging the Gap: Examining Approaches that Connect Business Requirements to Enabling Technology Solutions

Monday, 27 October – 8:30-17:00 Full day

Ralph Hodgson, TopQuadrant, Inc., ralph@topquadrant.com
Dave Parrish, Management Science Associates, Inc., dparrish@msa.com
Christine Brautigam, Direct Dynamics, Inc., christine@directdynamics.biz
Dr. Robert F. Coyne, TopQuadrant, Inc., robert@topquadrant.com

To ensure return on technology investments, companies need to align IT projects to their Business Strategy. Today a technology solution has many stakeholders, requiring systems to be developed in a multi-stakeholder context.

The key stakeholders include:

  • End-users of the solution who will have to live with the solution and will ultimately decide how successful it is – often they are external customers of the company
  • The Enterprise that is hoping to realize a business ROI from the solution
  • IT departments or other technical organizations responsible for implementing the solution
  • Technology vendors whose technology provides underpinnings and components of the solution

Stakeholders often have conflicting objectives. Moreover, differing sub-cultures and ways of working and communicating contribute to communication barriers and the possibility of project failure.

This workshop explores ways of realizing an effective “bridge” to close communication gaps and to create a shared vision and plan for realization among different stakeholders. The benefits of having an effective way to translate a Business Strategy into optimal technology solutions include:

  • Improved likelihood of project success
  • Increased enterprise vitality through effective use of technology
  • Greater ROI of technology spending

The workshop will look into approaches for accelerated solution design that can reliably translate and connect core business requirements into the best choices for enabling technology and software implementations. In particular, the workshop will solicit submissions that summarize substantive candidates of such approaches for presentation and subsequent cross-comparison and analysis. Workshop attendees will discuss, analyze and attempt to distill the essence of what makes these approaches work – looking for a core set of similar features, activities, constructs and results produced that have proven to be effective and reliable.

One possible example of such a common feature -- the use of solution stories -- appears to foster a common understanding of ideas and confidence in proposed capabilities for given domains. As one of the probable items of focus, the workshop will seek to confirm that this is a common feature, and to understand why. The overall goal and result of the workshop will be to catalog the most important, common features or activities of the best approaches and how and why each works, whether by itself or in combination with the rest.