Outline and prioritize the key issues and concerns an e-business architect must address when fulfilling his mission.
As we have seen, there are numerous stakeholder interests to consider in designing an e-business solution. It is often helpful to think of these issues in terms of a list of key issues or questions that the architect must address.
Purpose of the e-business solution
These questions span multiple facets of the business, and should include the issues described in the table below.
Key Issues and Design Areas impacted by e-business
To the Right: Key issues
Operational infrastructure and procedures
Financial infrastructure and budgets
Design areas impacted
Does the design include instant, secure credit card approval?
Fulfillment of sale
Does the design wed fulfillment of sale with current shipping and distribution systems?
Does the design include customer care online support?
Does the design signoff include the company's financial officers?
Maintenance of goods
Does the design link warehouse stock with advertisements on the site?
Existing technical infrastructure
Legal and regulatory requirements
Does the design accommodate legal considerations for the international satellite locations?
Does the design take into account licenses for shipment to foreign locations?
If you would like to download and print out Key issues and design areas impacted by e-business, go to the Easy Reference folder on the Resources page where this table is listed along with other reference tables used in this course.
Note that of the issues listed, the purpose of the e-business solution is by far the most important, but quite often the most overlooked.
If it is not clear what the design should achieve, then there is no way to measure its success.
Remember that the purpose, is the foundation for all other questions.
The role of the architect is made more complex by the fact that these issues interact with each other. In many ways, managing these multiple priorities is a balancing act. Let us look at a simple example. If the volume projections for the system indicate that a large system must be constructed to handle significant traffic, then a large portion of the allocated financial budget must be set aside for that development. This may reduce the amount of funds available elsewhere in the budget, for example, funds allocated for management information.
Of the issues discussed in this module, there are two key issues/questions are most likely to derail the e-business plan if you do not address them:
Does the design achieve its purpose?
Is the impact of its introduction understood and accepted by the enterprise as a whole?
Key Issues and Concerns
In considering key concerns and issues, those most likely to cause the success or failure of the project should be addressed first.
In the next lesson, we will define the quality factors that the architect must consider.