The Highway Analogy for an Outside In Business Architecture

An analogy

An analogy of a 3 lane highway anywhere in the world, we are not going to discuss the highway location, nor the travelers nor the vehicle in this article.  Our focus in this post will aid in the value stream conversations.

Entry and Exit

We will explain the points of entry and exit and the prescribed way to manage the lifecycle of an offer in three different models.

Assume we are speaking of the criteria from a Real World perspective; primarily the purpose will supply the executives and board members the way to frame risk in both the business and enterprise architecture.

Direction on the highway

South or East direction entry will be partnering with your suppliers; a cost or expense transaction will be measured by the number of vehicles entering the highway.

We can assume that our suppliers travel in one direction in the US the odd numbered highways travel North and South on even numbered highways West and East.

South or East on any highway

In our South or East bound direction of the highway we will assume all lanes collectively represent an investment.

Assume your organization or agency has partnered with your suppliers to produce the value streams working internally with Engineering and Marketing system activities.

Technical People terms

Management Capabilities are a term used by Enterprise Architects and Technology Vendors

Business People

A business person refers to their business requirements

There are planned investments which will be defined working with the management across each system in the enterprise.

  • A manager must finalize the expense request in this process.
  • The delegation or information transfer to a people manager to an individual contributor signifies the authority to purchase.
    • Many companies introduced a transaction request or delay and wait time on each transaction
      • The majority of managers delegated this task introducing another threat

Finance approves the allocated budget which includes the current employee headcount and any headcount planned for the new year.

Assume this requirement may require a gregorian or fiscal calendar depending on the preference of the organization.  The ability to accurate translate between the calendar to a fiscal type will enable your organization to setup a variety of time based views as a service.

In one use case; I personally spent an hour a day during entry of request into ERP using the description field with consistent entries to allow us to export and present reports based on the regions and quarter for the request.

A simple service applied to the system date would have automated and controlled threats to any accuracy in reporting the financial transaction in the appropriate period.

We can assume travelers Northbound on the highway are customers with the revenue outcome measured in any entering traveler.  We can assume the revenue was recognized at the exit of the traveler when exiting the highway.

Three lanes
In either direction we can assume the traveler enters the highway in some motor vehicle.  We are not concerned about the make, model or color and even less concerned about the driver.

In this analogy we simply know these details exist, which may influence the rate of speed the traveler moves in either North or South directions.

As with any highway, we have a slow lane that all travelers enter the highway by merging into the slow lane.  As the traveler accelerates they may move into the middle lane and eventually the farthest lane to the left.

Performance Measures
The performance of an organization can be derived by the number of travelers entering in one direction and how quickly they begin to measure the make and models entering in the North direction after exiting from the South bound direction.  We are assuming that south bound relates our suppliers with the build of an offer, exiting implies a customer can pick up the vehicle and travel North as they purchase the vehicle.

Design Strategy

Design Patterns for Real World as an Operational Business Service Guide

The slow lane – Emerging Offers – Deferred New Business Models the competitive advantage and innovation model
Any entrance and exit isn’t restricted by the design, we are predicting the rate of speed the new business models will be traveling slower in the first lane before they are allowed to merge on to the middle or farthest left lane.  We suspect they will exit and enter frequently, therefore they will be best suited to travel in the first slow lane.

The middle lane – Advanced Offers – Risk According to the Security Exchange Commission
The middle lane travelers who first enter, then accelerate and merge to the middle lane.  They may merge further left to the fast lane with the assumption that they will not impede the faster travelers.
Assume this behavior or design pattern speaks to the way these offers ramp up and come back to get re-aligned several times before making it to the fast lane.

The fast lane-Build Order Transfer models Your Channel Led Model
In some cases the commuter lane, where the distribution model works with a partner to allow the fully sustained model.


Your 5 capability model summarizes and converges the financial, business and quality management systems into your ERP system as the primary and single version of truth.  Your MDM systems enable ERP master records and collect the transaction relationships for your 360 degree view of each of the MDM or management capabilities that your transaction capabilities must use in to enable the reference architecture views.  The application of the reference information captures the point in time views.

Your management capabilities and transaction capabilities are designed for the best and known design patterns.  Your organization should be measuring the performance against these criteria for external stakeholders.  In doing so you continue with your liberal approach to decision making.

You quickly can recover in cases where you have over-corrected.  You are on your way to cloud services in this basic design and ready for new strategies every time.  No longer should you have to re-visit the enterprise or business architecture, rather the color, make and model investments are the scope of your future investments.

Don’t misunderstand, every road needs to be re-surfaced and new exit and entrances will be required.  However, the timelines of acquiring this activity no longer hinders your new business model.  Technology can be aligned to this model for faster and better services without customizations every time.

  1. Public Sector Hierarchy for a highway model
  2. Modeling Approaches

Related articles

Series In Draft

  • Part I-the analogy
  • Part II-The industry defined in a way to translate into the terminology used by the audience-Public Sector and Non-Profit
  • Part III-Integration of Master Data, Business Process and the various “ilities’ Recoverability, Resiliency etc.
  • Part IV-Operational Reference Architecture L2-3 in your capability model
  • Part V-The design for systems in the converged modeling the new Quality Definition – Quality Architecture
  • Part VI-Sub-Process Levels 1-6 the stakeholder conversations getting in to the for purpose audience



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