OMB: Business cases must relate to enterprise architectures for 2005

OMB: Business cases must relate to enterprise architectures for 2005

NEW ORLEANS'The Office of Management and Budget is raising the bar for agency IT business cases for fiscal 2005. Dan Chenok, chief of the IT branch at OMB, earlier this week said agencies must show strong links between their business cases and enterprise architectures for OMB to fund IT projects.

'These things are not one-shot deals that agencies come up with this summer and send them to OMB in September,' Chenok said at the Management of Change Conference sponsored by the Federation of Government Information Processing Councils. 'Business cases are about managing technology and managing transformation. Agencies that are well-performing at any one moment can show where they on a project on cost, schedule and performance goals, how it relates to their architecture and their procurement strategies.'

OMB will look at three characteristics of agency business cases that build on their architectures, he said:

  • The business case must show how the IT system improves an agency's performance in achieving its mission and how it can work with other agencies on similar functions, Chenok said. 'We want to know how a project will help the agency create a more effective enterprise,' he said.

  • Agencies also must identify collaboration opportunities through the Federal Enterprise Architecture. 'Agencies can free up lot of dollars that have been spent on redundant activities and refocus that money on intended activities through more effective enterprise architecture analysis,' Chenok said.

  • Agencies should include with their business case submissions a copy of their architecture framework and an explanation of how it relates to the federal blueprint. Chenok said if any agency can do that, other pieces such as management, security, risk mitigation and privacy will fall into place.

  • OMB is working to give agencies the tools and training to make sure their business cases are done correctly. Chenok said more than 2,000 agency officials have attended seminars the office conducts on how to prepare business cases.

    Norman Lorentz, OMB's chief technology officer, said the Federal Enterprise Architecture Management System will be online for agencies to consult with for budget planning. He said the Web tool will go online when OMB releases the second version of its Business Reference Model and the first iteration of the Performance Reference Model, two pieces of the federal architecture.

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