To inspire that commitment even more in all the employees, back in the day I asked a trainee to make a cube. We put copies of this cube on tables and desks everywhere and some of them are still around the place. Each cube displayed a visual representation of all the questions asked by the business. With every layer and every level, every functional need translated into “What do you need?”. In our case, this isn’t the 9-level model (the control model for supply and demand), but the 12-level model, because when that model was designed in the 1980s it didn’t yet have a data level. Datafication is very important; automation, computerization, digitisation and datafication, so the 12-level model.
The cube also has a side full of key figures. 100,000+ residents in the municipality, 5,000 hardware components, 800 laptops, 375 applications, and so on. That shows you at a glance which connections exist and why Enterprise Architecture is so important. This inspired a range of different dialogues, which is what I wanted, and then everybody started to see the added value of Enterprise Architecture.
The extent to which I was able to work with architecture here in the Municipality of Ede is much greater than I was ever able to do in my whole career. Here I’ve created and been given the ability and the freedom to roll out and implement architecture on a large scale, because when you get the architecture right you have a high return.
A good example is the continuity plan, with all the current ICT. When you effectively map out which ICT supports which (critical) processes, you see what can go wrong in a continuity scenario and you have a clear overview of when and where you must intervene. So it’s really important to have everything mapped out. In a municipality, this is much more important than in other organizations, because a municipality has a very diverse range of products and services that we provide to businesses and residents. That’s much more than a normal production company or service provider. The same applies to our application landscape.
Here in the Municipality of Ede, we’re using 375 applications to keep all the services running. There are 33 specialist departments, the public space with permits, infrastructure and the road network. Parking management, (youth) welfare, social support, safety, enforcement, etc. All the departments busy doing their own thing. All of them are actually small companies with their own specific products and services and therefore their own applications.