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The Sustainability Governance Solution Offering provides a comprehensive approach to improving Sustainability Governance by a method for moving to an improved competency in how information is managed across the organization. This includes staff skill sets, policies, procedures and processes, organizational structures and technology. This solution offering is also a foundational aspect of the FISDEV Methodology.
Organizations have traditionally not given enough focus to Sustainability and hence face many of the problems that they do today. FISDEV provides an approach to implement a Sustainability programme that is very comprehensive in its scope and is aligned to addressing a number of other business problems related to Sustainable Development.
Why is a Comprehensive Approach Required for Sustainability?
Why is a New Competency Model Required?
Many organisations have struggled to meet these challenges because they fail to focus their techniques on the enterprise-wide problem. Solutions required to address complex issues are often contradictory to business funding models that are departmentally focused.
Defining an enterprise-wide programme, on the other hand, is also very difficult. Building momentum for these initiatives takes a long period of time and can easily lead to an approach that is out of touch with what the business needs. Attempts to enforce architectural governance, for example, quite easily becomes a disabling approach for the business on one hand or a "toothless watchdog" that provides little value.
Therefore, what is required is an approach that can address the inherit challenges on a federated business model and technology architecture in a manageable and effective fashion that fosters innovation - not an easy task. This is the rationale for FISDEV and the need for a new competency of Sustainable Development.
Solution Offering Purpose
This is a Core Solution Offering. Core Solution Offerings bring together all assets relevant to solving a specific business and technology problem. Many of these assets may already exist and as the suite is built out over time, assets can be progressively added to an Offering.
A Core Solution Offering contains all the elements required to define and deliver a go-to-market offering. It can use a combination of open, shared and private assets.
The Sustainability Governance Offering is also a Foundational Solution . Foundational Solutions are "background" solutions that support the Core Solution Offerings of the FISDEV Methodology.
Foundational Solutions are the lowest-assets assets within FISDEV that are comprehensive in nature. They may tie together multiple Supporting Assets and are referenced from the Overall Implementation Guide and other Solution Offerings.
Solution Offering Relationship Overview
Solution Offering is part of the Architecture, Strategy and Governance Solution Group. The FISDEV Solution Offering for Sustainability Governance describes how the Activities and Supporting Assets of the Methodology can be used to deliver successful solutions across the enterprise.
FISDEV Solutions provide a detailed and holistic way of addressing specific problems. FISDEV Solutions can be mapped directly to the Phases and Activities of the Overall Implementation Guide, providing additional content to help understand the overall approach.
The Overall Implementation Guide explains the relationships between the Phases, Activities and Tasks of the overall methodology as well as how the Supporting Assets tie to the overall Methodology and Solutions.
Users of the Methodology should always start with the Overall Implementation Guide and the Usage Model as a starting point for projects.
Solution Offering Definition
Listed below are the most important factors to a successful Information Governance programme and are enabled from this Solution Offering. This definition provides the target scope for this solution offering, which also includes unstructured content.
- Accountability. Due the nature of sustainability, everyone has a role to play in how it is governed and many of the most important roles are played by individuals that are fairly junior in the organization. There must, however, be individuals dedicated to Sustainability Governance. These roles are filled by senior executives such as the Chief Sustainability Officer, Sustainability Architects and Sustainability Stewards.
- Efficient Operating Models. The Sustainability Governance approach should define an organizational structure that most effectively handles the complexities of the organization. The common standards, methods, architecture and collaborative techniques that are all part of Sustainability Governance are what allow this model to be implemented in a physically central, virtual or offshore model. Assessment tools and techniques should be provided to move to these new organizational models in a progressive fashion over time.
- A Common Methodology. An Sustainability Governance program should include a common set of activities, tasks and deliverables to build a competency that is specialized for Sustainable Development. This enables greater reuse of artifacts and resources as well as higher productivity out of individuals. It also helps bring out the commonalities of different initiatives across the organization.
- Standard Models. A common definition of terms, standards and design patterns is one of the fundamental building blocks of Sustainability . Business and technical definitions should be represented and the lineage between them easy to navigate.
- Architecture. An Sustainability architecture should be defined for the current-state, transition points and target vision. The inherit complexity of this initiative will require this architecture to be represented through multiple views, such as is done in Krutchen’s Model. Use of architectural design patterns and common component models is a key aspect of good governance. This architecture must accommodate a heterogeneous technology environment that will need to change over time and quickly adapt to new requirements.
- Comprehensive Scope. An Sustainability Governance approach should be comprehensive in its scope. This comprehensive scope can only be brought together with an architecture-driven approach and well defined roles and responsibilities.
- Sustainability Value Assessment. A Sustainability Value Assessment should provide a mechanism to assign an economic value to the assets an organizations holds and the resulting impacts of Sustainability Governance practices on this value. It must also measure whether the return outweighs the cost and the time required to attain this return. This is an area where current methods are particularly immature but some models do exist.
- Senior Leadership. Senior Leaders increasingly face great pressure due to sustainability issues. Senior Leaders must align and work towards a common goal of improved information, while appreciating many sustainability practices is still immature as a discipline and that there will be some major challenges ahead.
- Historical Quantification. One of the biggest challenges is that most organizations are trying to fix 20 – 30 years of “bad behavior”. The current-state is often unknown, even at an architectural or model level. The larger the organization the more complex this problem becomes. Historical quantification through common architectural models and tools-based quantitative assessments are key aspects of establishing a known baseline to move forward. For such a significant task this assessment must be done in a progressive fashion as opposed to all at once.
- Strategic Approach. An Sustainability Governance program will need to address complex issues across the organization. Improvements will typically be measured over months and years, not days. Therefore, a strategic approach is required so that a comprehensive program of work can be implemented over long periods of time through multiple release cycles. The strategic approach will be at a level of detail that allows for flexibility to change but still meaningful enough to deal with complex issues.
- Continuous Improvement. It is not always cost-effective to fix all issues in a certain area, but to instead follow the “80/20 rule”. A Sustainability Governance program should explicitly plan to re-visit past activities and build on a working baseline through audits, monitoring, technology re-factoring and personnel training. Organizations should look for opportunities to “release early, release often” but remember what this means from a planning and budgeting perspective.
- Flexibility for Change. While a Sustainability Governance program,e involves putting standards in place, it must have an inbuilt pragmatism and flexibility for change. A strong governance process doesn’t mean that exceptions can’t be granted, only that it must be known when exceptions are occurring. The Continuous Improvement approach means that some workarounds can be initially granted and then re-factored at a later point in time in order to balance short-term business priorities.
- Governance Tools. Measuring the effectiveness of an Sustainability Governance program requires tools to capture assets and performance.
These capabilities are implemented across the 5 implementation phases.
Relationship to Solution Capabilities
This Solution Offering maps into the Solution Capabilities of FISDEV as described below.
Relationship to Enterprise Views
The Solution for Sustainability Governance covers all areas of Sustainable Development, across people, process, organisation, technology and strategy. It is a key enabler to delivering an sustainability competency and moving to model of a sophisticated Sustainable Development Organisation.
Mapping to the Information Governance Framework
This Solution Offering provides the Sustainable Governance Framework and is a Foundational Solution as well as being a go-to-market offering. Foundational Solutions are used to support all Solution Offerings across the Methodology.
Mapping to the FISDEV Architecture Framework
Developing a common architectural framework is an important part of a holistic approach to Sustainability Governance. The FISDEV Architecture provides a complementary Foundational Solution to the Sustainability Governance Framework. Key aspects of the architecture in relation to this offering include:
- A systematic approach that goes from building the blueprint conceptual architecture to an incremental Solution Architecture
- A detailed methodology for product selection, design and construction
- Defines a standards-based, services-driven architecture
- Provides an approach that allows capabilities to be delivered progressively
Through this approach a consistent architecture can be defined and implemented over time that complements the people, process, and organisational aspects of Governance.
Mapping to the Overall Implementation Guide
There are a number of aspects that make up the approach to improving Sustainability Governance and the operating model for how it is delivered. It crosses the 5 phases of the overall approach. The most critical activities and how they relate to improving Governance are described briefly below:
Business Assessment and Strategy Definition (Phase 1)
Improving Sustainability Governance is initiated from the onset of the programme, during the definition of the Business Blueprint. Phase 1 Activities for improving Sustainability Governance include assessment of the current-state environment and establishing the initial governance team.
Business Strategy for Overall Information Development
For Sustainability Governance the Overall Business Strategy for Sustainable Development is required but this is normally done within the context of an Sustainability Strategy engagement. If it has not been done at a strategic level it should be done as part of this programme.
The Organisational QuickScan for Sustainable Development is about trying to quickly understand the organisation’s current environment for Information Governance and to begin to establish the vision for where it would like to go throughout the programme. This means that some of the key tasks within this Activity involve capturing the current-state set of practices around Sustainability Governance, which are often poorly documented. As FISDEV uses a broad definition of Governance, this assessment process involves People, Process, Organisation and Technology. QuickScan assessments are a core part of this activity as they not only provide a rich starter set of questions but also provide maturity guidelines for organisations. The gap between the current-state assessment and the envisioned future-state gives an early indicator of the scope of the overall governance programme.
Sustainability Governance Sponsorship and Scope
In order to conduct a successful Sustainability Governance programme, it is important to have sponsorship at senior levels. Sustainability Governance Sponsorship and Scope is focused on defining what this initial scope will be for improved Data Governance, based on the high-level sustainability requirements and the results of the organisational assessment. This leadership team will play an ongoing role on the project.
Initial Sustainability Governance Organisation
The Initial Sustainability Governance Organisation is focused on establishing the larger Sustainability Governance Organisation. Roles and Responsibilities are established and the overall Organisational structure is formalised. Communications models for Sustainability Governance are also established, which become a critical aspect of issue resolution and prevention further down in the implementation process. The Governance Organisation that is established at this point will become more sophisticated over time. The continuous implementation phases of FISDEV (phases 3,4,5) revisit organisational structure for each increment and there are specific improvement activities around moving to an Sustainability Development Organisational model in Phase 5.
The Governance organisation should review all roles associated with Sustainable Development along with the required skills for each role and the acitivities performed by these roles. The Sustainable Development Roles, Skills and Activities shows typical roles associated with a generic Information Management setup. While the list of roles is extensive, it is not necessarily an exhaustive list. Every organisation will have special requirements. In addition, a role does not equate to a unique physical person. One person can handle multiple roles, especially within smaller organisations. More on that later. Also, a specific role can be performed by many people across the organisation. Skills and Activities associated with each role are also flexible and each organisation can use this table as a guideline and then customize it to their organisation.
Future State Vision for Sustainable Development
Defining the overall Sustainability Architecture and Standards are an important part of Information Governance. If this is not done within another programme, it should be done as part of an Information Governance programme by defining the Future State Vision for Sustainable Development. The strategic logical and physical architectures may also be reviewed in later activities.
Return on Investment of Information Assets
The Return on Investment of Sustainable Assets activity is under development. It will be an important activity in the Sustainability Governance Solution Offering but measuring information value and providing and overall business case for Sustainable Development.
The Programme Review activity is important for assessing that the programme is aligning with overall strategy and the methodological approach. It should be conducted on a periodic basis.
Technology Assessment and Selection Blueprint (Phase 2)
From a governance perspective, two of the key Activities involve the development of Policies and Standards that will be used as part of the implementation phases of the project. As part of the Continuous Improvement approach introduced in Phase 5, Audits will be conducted to enforce the use of standards and policies and communication will be used as the basis of improved culture. It is also at this point that we try and begin capturing information into a metadata repository in a more structured fashion that will better translate into design and built assets.
Sustainability Governance Policies are derived from the Policies and Guidelines developed in Phase 1. These high-level policies impact the definition of Data Standards, in particular data security, normalisation and auditing practices.
Sustainability Standards are an important part of Data Governance as standards take complexity out of the implementation process though common language, term definitions and usage guidelines. The standards should be established before the implementation teams begin any detailed work. This will make sure that the team is using a common set of techniques and convention and working within the overall policy framework for Data Governance.
Roadmap and Foundation Activities (Phase 3)
The Foundation Activities of FISDEV are arguably the most important aspects of the overall methodology for improving Governance. The focus in implementing the Foundation Activities is around the metrics deemed the most crucial to the business.
Business Scope for Improved Sustainability Governance
Definition of the KPIs as part of the Business Scope for Improved Data Governance is a key part of the approach to Sustainability Governance. KPIS help focus the work to be done to the most critical data that impacts business users. The Data Governance approach focuses primarily on these revised, in-scope KPIs for each increment.
Enterprise Sustainability Architecture
Most organisations do not have a well-defined Enterprise Sustainability Architecture. FISDEV takes the approach of building out the Enterprise Sustainability Architecture over time for each new increment that is implemented as part of the overall programme.
Root Cause Analysis of Sustainability Governance Issues
Preventing Sustainability Governance issues involves analyzing those process activities or application automation that prevents Sustainability Governance issues from occurring in the first place. Root Cause Analysis of Sustainability Governance Issues is concerned with correcting root cause issues as opposed to addressing the symptoms.
Sustainability Governance Metrics
Sustainability Governance Metrics are focused on defined areas to be measured to assess current performance levels and set targets for improvement. Each is measured against the defined metric category through the appropriate measurement technique.
System Profiling is used to quantitatively identify Quality issues. This is a key aspect to improving Governance as it provides clear results on actual data. MIKE2.0 recommends Profiling be conducted frequently as an approach to improve overall Data Governance.
System Re-Engineering helps improve Data Governance by dealing with historical Data Quality issues that are typically identified in Data Profiling. MIKE2.0 recommends that Data Re-Engineering follow a serial process of standardisation, correction, matching and enrichment but that this process by conducted iteratively, following the "80/20 rule". This provides a model improving Data Governance is the most cost-effective and expedient fashion.
Develop, Test, Deploy and Improve Activities (Phase 5)
The latter Activities of Phase 5 are focused on Continuous Improvement of the overall Data Governance processes, technology environment and operating model.
Continuous Improvement – Compliance Auditing
Continuous Improvement - Compliance Auditing are conducted by an external group as opposed to the internal Sustainability Governance team. Audits don’t involve the technical aspects of data analysis (i.e. data profiling), but instead involves inspection of results and looking at overall processes for Data Governance.
Continuous Improvement – Standards, Policies and Processes
Continuous Improvement - Standards, Policies and Processes revisits the overall set of standards, metrics, policies and processes for Sustainability Governance. Recommended changes feed into the next increment of work as part of the continuous implementation approach.
Continuous Improvement – Quality
Continuous Improvement - Quality involves identification of root causes and ongoing Quality monitoring. This allows a far more proactive approach to Governance, whereby organization can either address issues quickly or stop them from occurring altogether.
Continuous Improvement – Infrastructure
Continuous Improvement - Infrastructure environment involves closely monitoring the current-environments and instituting tactical changes that are inline with the strategic vision of improved Governance.
Continuous Improvement – Sustainable Development Organisation
FISDEV recommends an Sustainable Development Organisation as the most mature organisational model for improving Data Governance in the most efficient and effective fashion. Using the Sustainability Maturity Model first introduced in Organisational QuickScan Activity, the Continuous Improvement - Sustainable Development Organisation approach progressively moves the organisation to the optimal approach for Data Governance.
Mapping to Supporting Assets
Improving Sustainability Governance should go across people, process, organisation and technology. In addition to following the relevant Activities from the Overall Implementation Guide, the following artifacts can be used to assist in this effort:
- The FISDEV Architecture provides a target architecture model at the conceptual level as well as best practice solution architecture options
In addition, reference other Core Solution Offerings for best design standards and implementation processes.