The Digital Architecture Realisation workshop

In my blog post last week, titled “Trends in Digital Transformation”, I wrote that Dr Nicole Dorsgren, in her book "Accelerate", has create a category of companies called Fast Companies. These Fast Companies do development up to 440 times faster than Slow Companies.

This is fantastic, but a company still needs to understand the customer needs, customer journey, business needs and technical capabilities that are needed before development can begin. Determining the technical capabilities that are needed to begin and have a successful project is the focus of today’s blog.

Idea to Execution process

When I was thinking about this I came up with this Idea to Execution process diagram.

The process to determine the required architecture is to first do Design Thinking and Customer Journey Mapping workshops. These are used to work through the solution concept, digital disruptive idea or customer solution that you have. While I am not discussing Design Thinking or Journey Mapping in this blog, I am more than happy to discuss these with you.

Once the above have been fully worked through, and we are as sure as possible that it meets the customer needs, then we need to determine what technology is needed. This is where we can use a Digital Architecture Realisation workshop discussed below.

The Digital Architecture Realisation (DAR) workshop

The DAR workshop has been developed by Oracle. Oracle can assist you to run a digital architecture workshop or you can take the concept and modify it to suit your needs.

The DAR workshop consists of two steps:

Step 1: Understanding the required technology components

Digital Architecture Realisation work area

To do the workshop you will need a large work area. Across the top you need to place each major application or step within the customer process. The customer process is the output from your Design Thinking and Customer Journey Mapping workshops.

On the left side of your work area write down all the layers of an IT architecture, with application types on the top, down to integration and database at the bottom.

The large area in the middle is now where you place the technology components that are required for every step placed along the top.

Technology cards

The best way of determining the technology components is to create cards, like in the examples above, and place them within the work area in line with the process step and technology layer. Someone with a broad technology knowledge will need to assist in doing this.

You will end up with something like the example below.

You will now know the minimum viable architecture and applications needed for your new process and we can move to step 2.

Step 2: Mapping the technology components

After step 1 you will be able to use the playing cards placed in your work area as the technology architecture and applications needed.

The process here will depend on the way your company or organisation operates. In general you will need to know the following:

  1. What technology is currently being used within your company? Can you use this technology within your new process?

  2. Has your company already selected a cloud provider and can you map the requirements to their capability? Does the cloud provider offer an easy way that you can test the new process at minimal cost?

  3. Do you need to release a RFI/RFP to source the technology solutions and/or implementation partner?

An ideal situation after step 2 is for you is to have mapped the required architecture and applications to an actual technology solution so that the implementation process can begin.

Below is an example of the final deliverable mapped onto an Oracle solution.

Example of the Digital Architecture Workshop final output

I hope you have found this blog helpful and relevant to you. If you have any questions, or would like to discuss anything, then please contact me on

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