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A Quality Management System Powered by Enterprise Architecture

By March 9, 2024March 11th, 2024Articles

by Giovanni Traverso, Riccardo Bausola and Nan Zhao

EA can be, more than ever, determinant in addressing the challenges of Quality Assurance in today’s industry. This includes areas such as:

  • The need to evolve quality culture from Compliance-Oriented to Business-Oriented, while ensuring stakeholder engagement in continuous improvement.
  • The role of Quality in the realization of Industry 4.0 and digital transformation.
  • The need to enhance Quality Management Systems (QMS) to become an Integrated QMS, embracing Sustainability.

The paper below describes a real-world example of applying EA in Quality Assurance within Bitron Electronics S.p.A. – A Bitron Group Company and discusses its benefits and challenges through the experience of the authors.

In fact, EA and, in particular, using a TOGAF® approach, addresses some of the key goals of a modern QMS, including:

  • Business Ownership: Moving quality from siloed processes to an integrated, business-owned system.
  • Improved Communication: Engaging all levels with a clear “business language” Quality Manual.
  • Efficiency & Agility: Leveraging tools like ABACUS® for easy browsing, auditing, and scenario analysis.
  • Standardization & Consistency: Aligning internal operations and interaction with customers & suppliers.
  • Benchmarking & Sharing: Facilitating best practice sharing and fostering continuous improvement.

Although originally focused on business-IT alignment, the EA framework had been adapted to fit various purposes, where its comprehensive approach to model organizations’ complexity gave remarkable benefits. In particular, EA offers an intrinsic capability to describe, classify and integrate the organization’s components along with their respective impacts on Quality, in terms of compliance, customer satisfaction, and risk management.

Additionally, EA has a mature ecosystem of tools that facilitate modeling, auditing, and sharing artifacts at various levels. As a result, its adoption brings in the power of existing tools that are well suited to design and document a QMS.

The recipe for the application of EA in such a context involves:

  • A customized metamodel as a standardized language (based on Archimate®),
  • The adoption of an industry standard process taxonomy (APQC PCF®), and
  • The leveraging of an EA tool (ABACUS®) for modeling and sharing a live Quality Manual within the organization, where Standard Requirements as well as Customer-specific/Business Requirements are mapped against every component of the architecture.

Click on the Download Full Paper button below to find out more.

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