Changes to the OMB EA Assessment Framework

The OMB EA Assessment Framework will be evolving and now is a better time than later to make the necessary course corrections in your EA program. OMB Chief Architect Kshemendra Paul has been briefing a slide. Here are a few early interpretations of the coming changes:

The first change noted on the slide is that OMB will want to see that business segments have been prioritized and that agencies are completing architectures for “priority segments” (not the easiest or the ones with most traction but the highest priorities). On this item, there exists an approach developed at Department of the Interior for prioritizing segments. This approach takes into account performance and spending data in order to discover the segments in your enterprise that are highest priority (lowest performance and highest spending) for transformation. Note that you will need to be doing prioritization of segments this summer so that progress can be made towards completing priority architectures by the next assessment cycle in February 2009.

The second change noted on the slide has to do with alignment of the EA and the Enterprise Transition Strategy with the Investment Portfolio (CPIC). Although there are not specific items spelled out here, it is safe to assume that there will need to be a tighter connection between the investments from the CPIC folks and the architecture work on the EA side. In general, Chief Architects should be working more closely with their CPIC counterparts and, at a minimum, associating all IT investments to segments and displaying them as part of the architecture.

The last change noted on the slide has to do with results. OMB will be increasingly asking for measurable milestones associated with completed segment architectures. They will want to see that EA programs have milestones and that the milestones have been completed on time and with measurable performance improvements to the mission. Kshemendra stresses “performance improvement” as the most important aspect of what EA should deliver.

Hopefully this slide and some of these thoughts are useful as many of you advance your EA program's capabilities.