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Gartner - Driving Innovation Using Pace Layering

Leveraging a "Pace-Layered" Approach to Accelerating Innovation – Jim Shepard

Focus on how companies are using this strategy to drive differentiation – the conversation between biz and IT leaders is not working
Most orgs have a heterogeneous portfolio of apps – legacy, main-frame and new – support huge range of mission critical to low-used, non-critical.
Varying rates of change across apps – pace layering – 1994 "How buildings learn" by Stewart Brand – different parts of building change at different rates
  1. Systems of Innovation – new processes and information (not talking about technology); emerging processes; skunk-works or under-ground typically; couldn’t wait for typical time-frame; experimentation; you should encourage innovation; do it as orderly as possible; very short change cycles; many don't last very long; "light" app development; can't be a complex IT process; some may work out to become enterprise --> rewrite to more enterprise- strength
  2. Systems of differentiation – more rapid change; tend to need more configuration; Marketing = branding, ads, campaigns; QTC = ordering, config, bundling; Supply Chain = delivery tracking
  3. Systems of Record – core records and common processes; eg HR, Finance, Inv Mgmt, Procurement; auditable, legal implications; foundation to the rest of the stack; unstable foundations lead to failure at the upper layers
Common Elements of Connective Tissue – allows interaction between apps in the different layers
  • MDM
  • Process and Data Integration 
  • Biz Service Repository – SOA
  • Security Arch – flexible enough to meet needs of all layers
Governance across the layers
  • One size does not fit all
  • Need three governance models for the three layers
  • Eg – funding model, process change, architecture, development, biz engagement, planning
Establish Realistic Proces and Data Integrity Rules across layers
  1. Create biz/IT group
  2. Break existing portfolio into individual apps
  3. Associate apps with biz process
  4. Assign the apps to the appropriate layer by looking at characteristics
  5. Adapt governance to the specific layer
  6. Build awareness of pace layers in org
  7. Encourage people to think about apps/process based on rate of change
Establish a development process with tools and resources that make innovation easy and fast
Shift some funding from Systems of Records to Systems of Innovation
Develop "connective tissue" to allow innovation to access MDM and call other web services

  1. move away from monolithic app strategy
  2. Establish standards for connective tissue 
  3. Develop a differentiated strategy for each layer
  4. Drive "new idea" innovations from the top down layer


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