Organizational Change Management for EA? Of Course!

One of the topics, although not new, that seems to be a regular topic of discussion among clients, peers, prospects and vendors is organization change management.  More specifically, how can EA be successful without an accompanying Organizational Change Management program?  Once you get into these discussions; however, the answer to the aforementioned question is “Yes!” but the discussion morphs into what we really mean by Organizational Change Management relative to EA.  Much like the term Enterprise Architecture, I think Organizational Change Management means a lot of different things to different people.  And also like the term Enterprise Architecture, I think there are some things that we can establish a position on to make the effort more meaningful and effective.

  1. Enterprise Architecture defines the changes necessary to support strategic direction in 5 core areas:  Business activities, business information, application portfolio, data, and IT infrastructure.  The first two are the realm of Business Architecture, while the final three are the responsibility of ITA architecture, although this is for purely semantic and separation of responsibility purposes.  BA and ITA changes are related and should be coordinated accordingly.
  2. Organizational Change Management is the process for altering other aspects of the enterprise that leadership need changed, such as the organization’s structure, resources, capabilities and behaviors.  These changes are necessary to enable and leverage the coming changes of the Enterprise Architecture.  This includes training for new skills, using new systems and information capabilities, identification of obsolete and new roles within the workforce, understanding the impact on the reporting structure of the enterprise, and introduction of new technology capabilities to the affected workforce.
  3. Organizational Change Management, like EA, is not intended to concentrate on change within the IT environment, but rather holistic, enterprise wide change and the accompanying implications within a complex ecosystem.

In general, we believe that aspects of organizational change management happen as a byproduct of some implementation efforts, such as training for a new system, or part of a strategic planning effort, or even some mature HR programs.   But there seems to be a lack of systemic, coordinated organizational change management that is related to a corresponding EA program, introducing significant change into an enterprise.   We are not suggesting that EA teams take on additional responsibility, but like other necessary disciplines that have accompanied EA as a part of an enterprise’s significant transformation – governance, portfolio management, service management, and value management to name a few – EA teams can articulate and demonstrate the need for a professional approach to organizational change management.