I’m an idiot when it comes to sports, especially football. I’m more a baseball guy, to be honest. But I do know they have coaches in football, and those coaches want to be successful. They need to win. Therefore coaches need a strategy; they need a play card. That is exactly what a Brick is, the strategy card. Now, you get many Bricks and an IT manager, the coach, can create the playbook and have all the information need to move a team from the baseline to a desired state.
Think of the Brick as the coach's play cards, go, team! Instead of plans for either the offensive or defensive teams, the Brick lists the growth plan for systems like Learning Management System or the Student Information System. The strategies of the system are all listed on one quick and easy sheet. The Brick allows a person to have all their special teams in one place. All the coach, the IT specialist, has to do is flip a few pages and then they are glancing at the planned growth of their district’s assessment system, for example. The coach’s play card maybe for one special team, one system, but there will be many strategies associated with that system.
The play card gives the coach a strategy to use to meet success. It is the responsibility of the coach to take the team from where they are to where they want to be, winning. The strategy of the game therefore is to start at the base line, envision the ideal state, and then identify the gap. The Brick will list baseline, desired state, the gap of the system applications or programs. The coach will then begin to collect enough play card, and then generate a playbook. In Enterprise Architecture, (EA) the model of The Open Group Architecture Forum, (TOGAF) has a place for these playbooks of system applications. In the Architecture Delivery, the information systems architecture is the coach’s playbook.
The team, the business, or even a school district needs to do more than show up on to the field; they must win. The information systems architecture is the coach’s playbook, and from here strategies are used to bring the district or business to success. It is important to note that the playbook is not used in isolation. Of course, I am referring to TOGAF. It begins with putting the architecture into context, where the team is, how is it currently playing and where does the team want to go. This is followed by the Delivery stage, and it is here where strategies are created based on an evaluation of systems, like system applications. In Transition Planning, the team is playing the game and projects start to happen. Governance would be the front office would oversee implementation and management. All the while, all parts of this process are in communication with the coach, or requirements management.
All metaphors aside, any enterprise needs a plan. True, in public education there are many reactionary actions. After all how many enterprises are mandated to change policies based on the public vote or local propositions? School districts, need to assess where their current states are if they are ever going to reach the desired state. This goes for all of systems, all of the bricks, of any district, from data management to library check out. Without any strategy, without a plan, there is no success. In education, success is often determined by the student outcomes.