Canadian credit agency uses enterprise architecture software to create customer-centric business model

Metastorm Inc. – Export Development Canada (EDC) provides insurance and financial services, bonding products, and small business solutions to Canadian exporters and investors, as well as online credit risk management tools. To better achieve its mission, as well as deliver greater business value and improved service, EDC recently set out to establish a more customer-centric business focus.

As part of the business reorganization, the EDC Enterprise Architecture (EA) Group needed to evaluate the capabilities of its current application portfolio. The group sought to assess the gap between where they were and where the business wanted to be—and determine how their systems could help them get there.

To start, the EA Group defined a core value chain, mapped applications to it, and identified points of redundancy. The results were eye-opening, as the team discovered that EDC business applications were deeply siloed and data sharing was virtually impossible.

These findings enabled the EA Group to get approval from EDC executives to move forward with purchasing an EA tool and undergoing the complex task of integrating and aligning the corporation’s legacy systems. EDC selected Metastorm ProVision®, a comprehensive enterprise and business architecture software solution, to support its efforts.

EDC used Metastorm ProVision to develop a comprehensive EA meta-model as a framework, with the goal of aligning EDC’s business and application architectures and improving access to customer data. To do this, the complete EDC value chain was modeled in the Metastorm ProVision software. The value chain models then served as a baseline for the system integration project.

Using Metastorm’s ProVision’s collaborative model repository and powerful modeling and analysis capabilities, EDC was able to decompose its architectures to the lowest function level, defining discrete business services along with associated inputs, outputs, data elements and deliverables.

At the lowest level, these functions were candidates for service-oriented architecture (SOA) implementation. The Metastorm ProVision models were used to create an SOA roadmap, allowing EDC to effectively harvest functionality while realigning the applications to meet its overall goal of transforming the organization into a more customer- centric enterprise.

The next step was to align each function to the corporate strategies and to the organizational units that were executing those functions on behalf of EDC’s external stakeholders. The EA team analyzed the functions, mapping them across organizational units and drilling down to the supporting systems – further identifying redundancies and areas for improvement.

By establishing a core value chain and EA framework, the EDC EA team won executive support for a fully integrated legacy system modernization plan. Metastorm ProVision’s comprehensive EA capabilities enabled EDC to realign its IT infrastructure and establish a customer-centric focus, using the value chain as a baseline to which all processes and systems are linked.

Key benefits include:

• Developing a corporate service roadmap – The EA team has proposed using a classic SOA approach to collapse duplicate functionality in various systems into a single instance for maintenance and upgrade.

• Preparing for Future Growth – Enabling the infrastructure to stay “one step ahead” of the business and ensuring that effective applications and systems are in place when they are needed.

• Driving improved strategic planning – Every new initiative will be quickly placed within the IT framework. By analyzing Metastorm ProVision models, EDC will know which functions support which strategy and which systems and platforms are related to them.

What’s the bottom line? With a new customer-centric focus and effectively integrated systems, EDC has established a viable, business-oriented IT investment strategy, reduced administrative overhead associated with IT project portfolio management, streamlined its systems—and clearly translated EA modeling into true business value.

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