TOGAF®, the enterprise architecture framework, describes a four level model for architectures, going from a foundation architecture (such as TOGAF itself, the Zachman framework, etc.) to organization-specific architectures (that is, the architecture that your organization might have in place).
There are two levels inbetween, the Common Systems Architectures and the Industry Architectures. It can be argued whether the architecture of service provision would be at the level of Common Systems or Industry (in any case, TOGAF considers these levels to be parts of a continuum, rather than discrete segments). Whatever the case, the architecture of service management has been sadly lacking.
Until now…An initiative has been organized by Christian Nissen, Peter Brooks and Stuart Rance to develop an ontology of service management, starting with a high level architecture based on industry standards. The groundwork for this initiative has been laid, and the hard work will start on 5 November to develop a draft architecture for service management.
Twelve experienced industry figures have been invited to ponder these questions and to produce a draft that will be opened to public review in the near future. We expect that this architectural work and ontological work will provide a much clearer framework for growing and for sharing our knowledge about how to manage services.
This work is being supported by Axelos, one of the main stakeholders in the IT service management industry. You may see its press release announcing the work here. Afficionadoes of Twitter may wish to follow the tag #ArchSM.
As a participant in this initiative, I will provide regular updates about service management architecture in these columns.