Published on 09-Nov-2012
"The common business model that we created with IBM’s help has enabled us to understand our business as a set of processes rather than a group of departments. This allows us to identify cross-functional and cross-silo inconsistencies more quickly, and to plan change-management activities more effectively." - Steve Cole, CIO, BAE SS
BAE Systems Submarines
Aerospace & Defense
Business Process Management (BPM), Enterprise Modernization, Enterprise Resource Planning, Managing Risk, Transformational Account
BAE Systems is a global provider of defence and security products and associated support solutions. From sophisticated cyber services and military support to mission-critical electronic systems and protection equipment, the company aims to be at the forefront of defence technology and science. It employs more than 80,000 people in Australia, India, Saudi Arabia, UK and USA, and reported sales of £19 billion in 2011. Within its Maritime division, the Submarines business (BAE SS) designs and constructs submarines for the UK Royal Navy.
BAE Systems Maritime - Submarines wanted to develop an Enterprise Architecture to improve its ability to support major business and IT transformation, including a new Product Lifecycle Management initiative.
Engaged IBM® Global Business Services® to work with key internal stakeholders to create a TOGAF-aligned Enterprise Architecture approach and make it internally sustainable by the Submarines business.
Provides a common framework for discussions about change, financial priorities and business evolution; enables consistent dialogue across the business, and between business and IT stakeholders.
BAE Systems is a global provider of defence and security products and associated support solutions. From sophisticated cyber services and military support to mission-critical electronic systems and protection equipment, the company aims to be at the forefront of defence technology and science. It employs more than 80,000 people in Australia, India, Saudi Arabia, UK and USA, and reported sales of £19 billion in 2011. Within its Maritime division, the Submarines business (BAE SS) designs and constructs submarines for the UK Royal Navy. As the industrial lead for the “Successor” programme, alongside partners Rolls Royce and Babcock Marine, BAE SS is designing a new generation of submarines to carry the UK’s independent nuclear deterrent.
BAE SS works on programmes that have lifecycles measured in decades, and that all overlap each other. As there is no prototyping phase, the design and build phases run concurrently, and all products are built to order. These characteristics create significant challenges, not least in maintaining essential knowledge and skills. They also naturally foster a conservative approach to change within the business.
The company already had one major IT project in progress - the deployment of SAP ERP - and was preparing to launch a second: Integrated Product Development Environment (IPDE), a PLM programme for developing the next generation of nuclear submarines. With both projects requiring significant changes in organisation and working practices at BAE SS, the company determined that there would be value in validating and improving its existing approaches to architecture. Historically, approaches had tended to focus almost exclusively on technical architecture to the detriment of the business architecture, and were largely project-oriented rather than strategic and future-oriented. There was also only limited dialogue about architecture between the IT and business functions.
Preparing for change
As the principal stakeholders, the CIO and Chief Architect of BAE SS engaged IBM Global Business Services to review the existing approaches and make recommendations for a new enterprise architecture (EA). The organisation was keen to align its EA with The Open Group Architecture Framework (TOGAF), a proven enterprise architecture methodology and framework maintained by the Open Group, an international vendor- and technology-neutral consortium.
“As we worked through our ERP deployment and made the final plans for introducing the IPDE, it was clear that we were facing major IT and business change,” says Steve Wells, Chief Architect at BAE SS. “We wanted to take a more joined-up approach to architecture that would be coherent across both IT and the business, and we recognised that we needed to build new architecture capabilities in-house. The IBM team, led by Paul Homan, had a great deal of experience around TOGAF and quickly demonstrated their ability to deliver practical solutions that are focused on what is really important for BAE SS.”
Establishing common ground
IBM used a discovery review and a series of workshops with the leadership team to generate an informal assessment of as-is approaches to architecture, then made recommendations on which areas should be prioritised for improvement. Rather than trying to match an idealised set of best practices for architecture, IBM recommended that BAE SS focus on practical changes that would deliver the most value in the shortest time. IBM proposed that BAE SS adopt an Architected Approach, essentially helping the organisation design and manage its Business and IT capabilities in the same way it designs and manages its submarines.
As one of the first activities under this Architected Approach, and to help BAE SS create the new EA and build the internal capabilities to maintain and develop it over time, IBM used its Component Business Model™ approach to help establish a common model for the business. The Component Business Model itself provides a simple, one-page map of any business, based on the basic building blocks - including people, processes and technology - that constitute the value chain. This enabled BAE SS to see how its business could be represented in terms of the underlying skills, processes and IT systems. By testing it with key business stakeholders, the IT function was able to refine the map and establish it as the common business model within BAE SS.
“The creation of the common business model enabled us to map the footprints of our two major programmes quickly, see the overlaps between them, and identify the likely future capability gaps for both,” says Steve Wells. “We had already been working hard on our target operating models for the coming years, trying to determine what skills, processes and technologies we would need to get in place as we rolled out major strategic programmes.
Shared vision for the future
“The common business model arrived at just the right time, providing a shared framework and language that enables business people across different functions to model their activities and see the current and future dependencies in terms of people and systems. It also brought together IT and the business, enabling us to build the foundations for a true Enterprise Architecture that covers both business and technical domains.”
The common business model is now deployed within BAE SS, with different business functions using it to determine their likely future footprint and the changes that will be required to get from the as-is state to the to-be state.
Using the common business model, IBM worked alongside BAE SS to create a basic set of as-is and to-be artefacts across business, information, applications and technology, including gap analyses for areas of primary interest. These are continuing to evolve, and are used as the input to the strategic prioritisation and decision-making forums within BAE SS, which map out what the major delivery programmes need to do and determine what new capabilities are required across both business and IT. These outputs can then be used to create the roadmaps for project delivery.
IBM’s practical, hands-on approach promoted the transfer of new architectural and change-management skills to the BAE SS team, helping to ensure the long-term sustainability of this TOGAF-aligned architectural approach. This longevity is particularly important for BAE SS, where programmes can easily span decades.
The creation of the EA and the associated common business model has brought together business and IT stakeholders, giving them a structured framework in which to discuss and plan strategic transformation. This framework enables both sides to understand the current state, agree on the future state, and determine what needs to be done to get there.
For the existing ERP programme, the EA is helping to ensure that the exit state of the implementation is compatible with the planned changes to the rest of the systems landscape. For the new IPDE programme - and any future transformation projects - having a coherent and well-managed enterprise architecture is expected to reduce risk and shorten time-to-value by highlighting capability gaps and enabling them to be addressed in a structured manner.
New enterprise culture
In the past, architecture was very much the preserve of the IT function and focused almost exclusively on technology, which limited the value it could bring to BAE SS as a whole. Today, it spans both business and IT, and has given the IT function much greater credibility within the business. The organisation has aligned itself with the Architected Approach proposed by IBM: from Senior Management down, the business is now using the common business model to make better decisions.
“The common business model that we created with IBM’s help has enabled us to understand our business as a set of processes rather than a group of departments,” says Steve Cole, CIO of BAE SS. “This allows us to identify cross-functional and cross-silo inconsistencies more quickly, and to plan change-management activities more effectively. As we move forward with IPDE and other major strategic projects, we anticipate that the new enterprise architecture will help us to reduce risk and improve both the speed and quality of delivering new capabilities to the business.”
Products and services used
IBM products and services that were used in this case study.
AIS: Enterprise Architecture and Technology, GBS Strategy and Change: Business Strategy, GBS Strategy and Change: Organization Change Strategy, GBS S&T: Business and Customer Strategy - Business Strategy, GBS S&T: Technology Strategy
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