Business Architecture Guild metamodel in Ardoq guide

Business Architecture Guild (BA Guild for short) is the organization behind the Business Architecture Body of Knowledge (BizBOK) and has produced a comprehensive metamodel to describe and analyze your business.

Some of our customers wish to use the BA Guild Business Architecture (BA) methodology. In consideration of them, Ardoq has implemented an easy-to-get-started BA Guild BA metamodel. Before the end of Q3 2022, the specific reference architectures produced by BA Guild will also be released to further support our customers. However, be advised that BA Guild membership is required to access the BA Guild reference architecture. Additional bundles exclusively for BA Guild members will be made available in a subsequent release.

Ardoq’s approach to BA Guild BA

There are many diverse approaches to BA in the industry and Ardoq’s flexible model can support them. You can use BA Guild as a starting point and evolve it to meet your needs.

The BA Guild BA Metamodel bundle, which is free to download and use, provides the following:

  1. The Business Architecture Metamodel v2 as further explained in this document

    1. Pre-created fields to serve recommended documentation and heat mapping

    2. References to connect the individual pieces of the model

  2. Prebuild Surveys to collect information about your business architecture

  3. Prebuild visuals to radiate information about your business architecture to colleagues and other stakeholders (Visualizing your business architecture)

This article details how we have prepared a prebuilt bundle in Ardoq containing BA Guild BA metamodel for our customers.

The reference architecture implementations will be detailed in a subsequent article.

Metamodel

BA Guild’s BA metamodel is implemented in Ardoq almost exactly as described in BA Guild’s BA Metamodel document, and illustrated below:

business architecture guild metamodel

(Source: Business Architecture Guild’s BA Metamodel document)

Implementation in Ardoq

There are many ways to metamodel a domain. You will notice similarities and differences between the BA Guild BA metamodel and Ardoq’s recommended metamodel, which is the basis of our use case guides. The reasoning behind our approach is described in our Seven Principles for Creating a Great Enterprise Architecture Metamodel article.

Ardoq’s implementation of BA Guild's BA metamodel (found in the metamodel document) is broken down into workspaces according to the domains in BA Guild BA. The implemented metamodel consists almost entirely of component types and references directly as described in the BA Guild BA metamodel document.

The illustration below shows exactly how BA Guild’s BA metamodel is implemented in Ardoq:

  • Each color represents a workspace - e.g. the Value Stream and Value Stream Stage component types are placed in the same workspace in Ardoq

  • Each colored rounded rectangle represents a component type

  • The text in bullet points are fields containing descriptive information about the specific component

  • The arrow lines are references

  • The composition (diamond-shaped) lines represent a parent-child relationship

A detailed description of each specific domain can be found in the Detailed description of how the BA Guild metamodel is implemented in Ardoq section. The component types without any fields shown in the illustration below are implemented with no fields except for those common to all component types. See Common fields for all component types.

Please consult the BA Guild BA metamodel for further information about the BA Guild’s BA Metamodel document.

How to get started with the BA Guild Business Architecture metamodel using Ardoq

The easiest way to get started is to request the Business Architecture Guild Metamodel bundle through the in-app support chat. The bundle is available both with and without sample data.

When the bundle is received in your Ardoq instance, all the content is placed into a folder called “Business Architecture Guild Metamodel Assets”. Unless there is a preexisting folder named the same, the BA Guild BA bundle won’t overwrite preexisting Ardoq content. If at first you’ve received the bundle containing sample data, and now you want one without sample data, just rename the existing bundle and request the one you want.

Predefined Surveys

Ardoq created several surveys specifically for enriching your BA Guild BA metamodel, one for each domain or component type. In addition, each survey contains all input fields and references. All surveys are included in the BA Guild BA bundle.

There are several other ways of getting data into Ardoq and these are explained below.

The image below shows a snippet of the Capability Survey.

capability survey

Prebuilt Excel importer

In the BA Guild BA bundle, you also get access to a pre-made Excel template accompanied by preconfigured import settings set to the structure of the templates. Note that the industry reference architecture provided by BA Guild is not compatible with these templates or the preconfigured import settings. However, you can download our pre-made Excel template now. The industry reference architectures will be released in a subsequent bundle.

If you wish to import BA Guild BA documented in another Excel structure, you can use our Excel importer to design your own data import.

Grid editor

Ardoq enables you to document your BA Guild BA in several ways. If you have multiple artifacts you wish to document in one sitting, you can use the grid editor to enter data in a spreadsheet-like form:

grid editor

Other integration possibilities

You also have available a selection of out-of-the-box integrations or access to utilize our Rest APIs.

Visualizing your business architecture

Ardoq creates its visuals based on a combination of the data you have collected in the metamodel, different perspectives, the chosen type of visual, and specific view modifiers. To facilitate your implementation of BA Guild BA, we’ve created some visuals to give you a good starting point. See below for examples of preconfigured visuals.

Capability

To get started with understanding your capability map, you can create a Capability Heat Map. In the example below the colors in the heat map illustrates the quality of the capabilities.

capability heat map

For a more detailed insight into capability context, you can use a block diagram and select a specific capability. In the view modifiers choose to view all incoming and outgoing references, to see what in the architecture affects the capability and what the capability enables and uses.

block diagram

Value Stream

Value streams are a main focal point in BA Guild’s approach to business architecture and are therefore also rich in visualizations. The example below illustrates a single value stream with its stages and flow. The visual is heat mapped on the value stream stages on the field Efficiency and Timeliness but can be altered to use other fields, references, or tags.

value stream

If the focus is on the capabilities enabling value stream stages and their quality, add capabilities and heat map them on the quality field value.

value stream stages

Other types of visuals

Dependency maps are a great way to show several layers of dependencies. In the example below a business unit, its dependencies, and the dependencies’ dependencies are shown. To describe this example, you can see that “Organizational Development” Adopts the policy “Company Policy 1” which Influences “Capability 1” that Achieves “Outcome 1”.

dependency maps

The Relationships view gives a quick overview of a component’s relationship to other components. This view is typically used for obtaining an overview of interconnected components and grouping them based on, for example, BA Guild BA domains. The image below shows an example of interconnected components grouped by workspace (representing BA Guild BA domain).

relationship views

Extending the model

Want to include requirements, business processes, or other aspects of business architecture (see BA Guild’s BA Metamodel document, pp. 37-45)? Ardoq’s flexible model allows you to add additional components and reference types and expand your metamodel to fit your requirement. For guidance on how to extend your metamodel read Seven Principles for Creating a Great Enterprise Architecture Metamodel. Please contact your CSM if you need help extending your metamodel.

Detailed description of how the BA Guild metamodel is implemented in Ardoq

Ardoq’s implementation of BA Guild’s BA metamodel is broken down into workspaces according to the domains in BA Guild BA. The specific implementation of the domains is described in the following sections. Each domain, for example, the capability or value stream domain, is detailed below. Each domain contains component types with fields and references. All the fields and references are described under each domain.

For a full model overview of how BA Guild BA is implemented in Ardoq, please see the Implementation in Ardoq.

Capability Domain

The capability domain in the BA Guild BA metamodel is specialized for describing capability instances and behavior. Capability Behavior is used to describe a Capability and Capability Instances behavior. This knowledge is considered abstract and therefore less useful to describe as a distinct entity in this implementation of BA Guild BA. Therefore Capability Behavior is left out of the implementation.

Capability component type

The practical implementation of BA Guild BA’s Capability concept is implemented as a capability component type which describes the capability using the following fields and references:

Field

Description

Definition

Criticality

The criticality of the capability

5 = Negligible impact

4 = Limited impact

3 = Moderate impact

2 = Noticeable impact

1 = Significant impact

Quality

Describes the quality of the capability

0 = Not Evaluated

5 = Does Not Exist but Should

4 = Working Well

3 = Suboptimal

2 = Problematic - Not Severe

1 = Significantly Problematic

Reference name

From

To

Achieves

Capability

Outcome

Enables

Capability

Value Stream Stage, Product

Modifies

Capability

Information Concept

Uses

Capability

Information Concept

Outcome component type

The Outcome component type is implemented with no fields beyond those common to all component types. See Common fields for all component types.

Reference name

From

To

Assigned to

Outcome

Value Stream Stage (Value Item)

Capability Instance component type

The Strategy component type is implemented with no fields beyond those common to all component types. See Common fields for all component types.

Reference name

From

To

Realizes

Capability Instance

Capability

Value Stream Domain

The value stream domain is usually a key area in business architecture and is implemented in Ardoq in full. However, our implementation differs slightly as Value Item and Value Proposition are implemented as text fields on component types rather than as separate component types. This design is better suited to Ardoq's way of working and provides the best user experience and value.

Implemented component types are:

  • Value Stream

  • Value Stream Stage (child of Value Stream)

Value Stream Stage component type

The Value Stream component type describes the value stream using the following fields and references:

Field

Description

Definition

Entrance Criteria

What is the criterium for starting the stage?

Text

Exit Criteria

What is the criterium for finishing the stage?

Text

Quality and Correctness

0 = Not Evaluated

5 = Does Not Exist but Should

4 = Working Well

3 = Suboptimal

2 = Problematic - Not Severe

1 = Significantly Problematic

Efficiency and Timeliness

Same as previous

Consistency and Standardization

Same as previous

Availability to Stakeholder Community

Same as previous

Performance against Expectations

Same as previous

Reference name

From

To

Precedes

Value Stream Stage

Value Stream Stage

Value Stream component type

The Value Stream component type describes the value stream using the following fields and references:

Field

Description

Definition

Value Proposition

The value proposition delivered by the value stream

Text

Reference name

From

To

Fulfills

Value Stream

Objective

Information Domain

Information concept describes a business object and its dependencies to related information concepts. Information concept is implemented the same way in Ardoq as in BA Guild, using one component type including describing fields. The component type implemented in Ardoq is:

  • Information Concept

Information Concept component type

Field

Description

Definition

Category

Primary information represents a business object that exists independently from other objects. Secondary depends on other objects to exist

List - Primary or Secondary

Type

Represents variations of information that exist in practice

Text - the selection is dependent on which information to describe

States

Represents conditions or statuses that can occur

Text - the selection is dependent on which information to describe

Reference name

From

To

Relates to

Information Concept

Information Concept

Parent-child

Information Concept

Information Concept

Stakeholder Domain

A stakeholder can play different parts in business architecture. In BA Guild BA a stakeholder can be, for example:

  • a customer that triggers a value stream and desires the value proposition

  • a participant in completing the value stream stages

  • one who owns a strategy

Stakeholder is implemented in Ardoq using one component type: Stakeholder.

Stakeholder component and reference types

Field

Description

Definition

Type

Defines a stakeholder as internal or external

List - Internal, External or Either. Expand the list with your own needs

Category

Aligns with the capability map, and is usually customer, partner, constituent etc.

List - define your own list with your own needs

Reference name

From

To

Triggers

Stakeholder

Value Stream

Desires

Stakeholder

Value Stream (Value proposition)

Participates in

Stakeholder

Value Stream Stage

Owns

Stakeholder

Strategy

Defines

Stakeholder

Information Concept

Organization domain

The Organization domain describes an organization and its business units. The structure can be used to describe both smaller and larger conglomerate businesses.

BA Guild’s BA Organization is implemented in Ardoq using 2 component types: Organization and Business Unit.

Organization component and reference types

The Organization component type is implemented with no fields except for those common to all component types. See Common fields for all component types.

Reference name

From

To

Pursues

Organization

Objective

Staffs

Organization

Capability Instance

Delivers

Organization

Product

Business Unit component and reference types

The Business Unit component type is implemented with no fields except for those common to all component types. See Common fields for all component types.

Reference name

From

To

Belongs to*

Business Unit

Organization

Parent-child relation*

Business Unit

Organization

Adopts

Business Unit

Policy

Owns

Business Unit

Product

Sponsors

Business Unit

Initiative

Delivers

Business Unit

Capability

* Business Units can be documented using either a reference, a parent-child relation, or both. This gives the user the flexibility to decide which structure best fits the need of the business

Strategy Domain

The strategy domain encompasses the processes of creation, execution, monitoring, and supervising a strategic change to aspects of the business” (Source: The Business Architecture Metamodel, p. 27).

Strategy is a complex domain that can entail several methodologies, philosophies, and models. The BizBOK describes some of these approaches in more detail.

The specific implementation of BA Guild BA’s strategy domain in Ardoq is detailed below and is inspired by the strategy template described in BizBOK. The implementation can be used as-is or altered to fit your purpose. The implemented model enables the description of the overall strategy and connects this to objectives that are detailed by a goal, KPI, and a course of action. Ardoq’s implementation of BA Guild’s strategy domain includes the following component types:

  • Strategy

  • Objective

Strategy component and reference types

The Strategy component type is implemented with no fields except for those common to all component types. See Common fields for all component types.

Reference name

From

To

Achieves

Strategy

Objective

Is aligned with

Strategy

Value Stream

Impacts

Strategy

Product

Impacts

Strategy

Stakeholder

Objective component and reference types

Field

Description

Definition

Goal

Describes what the strategy aims to achieve

Text

KPI

How to measure progress?

Text

Course of Action*

What to do to achieve the goal.

Text

* Can also be substituted with the Realizes reference from Initiative to Objective

Reference name

From

To

Motivates

Objective

Initiative

Targets

Objective

Capability

Product Domain

From the customer perspective, the product is the overall experience provided by the combination of goods and services to satisfy that customer’s needs” (Source: The Business Architecture Metamodel, p. 34).

Product in Ardoq is implemented using 2 component types:

  • Product

  • Entitlement

Product component- and reference types

Field

Description

Definition

Product Line

Describes product line(s) the product belongs to. Could be for example Personal and Commercial

Multi-select list - Personal and Commercial. Change to define your own

Reference name

From

To

May contain

Product

Entitlement

Relates to

Product

Product

Entitlement component and reference types

The Entitlement component type is implemented with no fields beyond those common to all component types. See Common fields for all component types. Nor does Entitlement have any outgoing references.

Initiative Domain

An initiative represents the execution of a strategy, and is often referred to as projects and grouped in programs and portfolios depending on your business’ approach. Initiative in Ardoq is implemented using one component type aptly named Initiative.

Initiative is, as the illustration below describes, a course of action. Course of action is implemented as a field in Objective but can be replaced by the Realizes reference from Initiative.

Initiative component- and reference types

Field

Description

Definition

Strength of Objective Alignment* (field on reference to an objective)

Describes the contribution the initiative has on a referenced objective. This field is therefore on the Realizes reference to objective

List - Low, Medium, and High. Change to define with your own needs

Reference name

From

To

Realizes*

Initiative

Objective

Impacts

Initiative

Capability

Impacts

Initiative

Product

Impacts

Initiative

Value Stream

* BizBOK version 10 recommends documenting the alignment of initiatives to an objective. To document, Ardoq has added a field called “Strength of Objective Alignment” as a single-choice list on the Realizes reference. See the definition of fields in the table above. A visual example of this is illustrated below.

align initiative to objective

Policy Domain

Policy describes internal and external policies that affect the business in one way or another. Highly regulated areas, such as banking or public sector institutions, are affected by external policies that they must adhere to.

Policy in Ardoq is implemented using one component type: Policy.

Policy component- and reference types

The Policy component type is implemented with no fields except for those common to all component types. See Common fields for all component types.

Reference name

From

To

Associated to

Policy

Policy

Guides

Policy

Objective

Influences

Policy

Capability

Sets direction in

Policy

Organization

Common fields for all component types

All the component types have common fields like name or description, and all component types that have a parent-child relation have a field that calculates which level in the hierarchy the component in question is.

Field

Description

Name

The name of the specific component.

Description

A more detailed description of the component

Component Type

Describes which component type the current component is. For example, a Capability or a Value Stream Stage

Component Level

For those component types that have a parent-child structure, like organization, the level describes its place in the hierarchy

How to load the Business Architecture Guild metamodel

Ask your Ardoq organization admin to make a request for the Business Architecture Guild Metamodel through our in-app support chat. The metamodel is available with or without sample data.

Conclusion

Ardoq’s implementation of the BA Guild BA metamodel enables you to achieve fast time-to-value, and the ability to grow your metamodel as your business architecture matures.

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