Charles Sturt University
Charles Sturt University

Business

The Business Architecture portfolio is a framework for structuring and understanding business, information and technology patterns and how they work together to achieve strategic and tactical goals. 

Business Architecture defines enterprise value streams, which tell us what an enterprise must produce to:

  • Satisfy customers,
  • Compete in the market,
  • Deal with suppliers,
  • Sustain operations, and
  • Care for employees

In practical terms, Business Architecture provides a set of tools and viewpoints (e.g. business capability models, process models and value streams) that support the alignment of business operations, projects and IT with organisational goals and strategy. In providing value to CSU, Business Architecture is able to identify how one project or initiative helps fill a business capability gap by providing visual ties between University Strategy and the people, process and technology resources that are in use. This will ultimately enable CSU to make more effective decisions about our investment in people and projects.

Key Concepts

There are a number of organisational views that contribute to understanding Business Architecture and tie together 'what' we do and 'why' we do it.  The following concepts are important in understanding and planning business at CSU:

Concept Outcome
Business Strategy
Defines what the organisation wants to achieve (goals and objectives) and how it intends to get there (strategies and tactics). At CSU, the University Strategy is managed by the Office of Strategic Planning and Information.
Business Capability
Defines 'what' an organisation does in order to deliver value. An organisation uses resources in the form of people, processes, information and technology to deliver business outcomes. Capabilities are measured using Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), which are measures of the value derived from business activity.

Business capability also provides a pivot point that enables strategy to be transposed onto business operations. Where strategy defines the objectives and outcomes we want to achieve, business capability is the way in which we achieve business outcomes. We can use business capability as the translation between our strategic objectives and our operational layer of people, processes, information and technology. 

Business capability is a key planning asset because it allows us to see what capabilities need to be improved in order to meet strategic goals and objectives. This enables us to focus our strategic initiatives on the people, processes, information and technology that enable those capabilities, or more specifically on the capability gaps in those enabling resources.

Note
- CSU business capability models and corresponding linkages to the application and information architectures, as well as business strategy are currently under development and will be available from this site soon.
Value Stream
Defines 'what' an organisation does in order to deliver value. An organisation uses resources in the form of people, processes, information and technology to deliver business outcomes. Capabilities are measured using Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), which are measures of the value derived from business activity.
Business Process Architecture
An organised overview of business processes which specifies the hierarchy, ordering, interfaces and interdependencies between our processes. 

A process architecture is an important tool for understanding cross functional dependencies and identifying opportunities for improvement. Process Performance Indicators (PPIs) measure how well our processes are running, and provide an important link to measure how our operational layer is contributing toward or hindering the achievement of strategic objectives.

The process architecture also provides business managers with a view of the processes they are responsible for and an asset to support training and consistency in their operations.  Having a standard model of CSU processes also allows alignment of operations across the whole university. The visibility of cross-functional relationships provides managers with better clarity of their internal and external dependencies and promotes better management of those relationships. The CSU Process Architecture is currently being revised, however the top level CSU Process model can be viewed on the Process Architecture page.

Key Artefacts

Title Description Date
Business Architecture Roadmap A roadmap for the ongoing development of business architecture at CSU. Dec 2015
Business Process Management (BPM) Capability Plan A roadmap for the establishment of BPM capability within DIT. May 2015
Architecture of Integrated Information Systems (ARIS) Business Designer Conventions Manual Guidelines and standards for developing models in ARIS. Jun 2014
CSU Core Processes Identifies the core and support processes for CSU. 2009

Common Queries

QueryResolution
How should we develop our process models and what information should we include?The ARIS Conventions Manual provides a good overview of how all common model types are developed at CSU and guidelines on the information to capture.