Overcoming digitalization-driven challenges in banks : An exploration of theory and practice towards improving Enterprise Architecture Management’s ability to support rapid change
Schmid, Leopold (2018-09-10)
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Banks increasingly need the ability to implement rapid change to react to changes in technology, user demands, and regulations that are difficult to foresee. The complex information systems (IS) and process landscape of incumbent banks impede this ability. Enterprise architecture management (EAM), as a function that aims to oversee the coherent development of the IS and IT landscape in alignment with the business, is argued to have the capability to support this ability. However, the speed and uncertainty of changes, as well as a focus of banks to implement Agile project methodolo-gies and de-centralize decision-making, challenges EAM to effectively fulfill this role. A Theoretical Base model is constructed from the literature and promising approaches to increase the effectiveness are identified. An exploratory case study of three large banks that are affected by digitalization to different extents, is conducted on the basis of this model. The findings indicate non-technical issues to be the most challenging factors for EAM today, which need to be addressed to allow EAM to valuably support banks’ ability to accommodate rapid change by providing transparency, guidance for projects regarding processes and technology, as well as steering for the long-term evolution of the IT landscape. EAM can help banks most effectively by supporting cross-team communication and facilitating reduced complexity in the long-run.