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EA Principles for Desktop

The EA Domain Team for Desktop is built upon five EA Conceptual Principles and seven EA Principles for Desktop:

  1. Optimization
  2. Return on Investment
  3. Enterprise Purchasing
  4. Best Practices
  5. Standard Technologies and Open Architecture
  6. Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity
  7. Security

1. Optimization

Desktop decisions will be based on long-term business needs of the enterprise and agencies.

Benefits:

  • Desktop standards will be balanced with needs of the customer
  • Promotes investment in long-term strategic platforms
  • Will promote interoperability within the enterprise and with business partners
  • Reduces desktop configurations

Implications:

  • Requires migration for outlying technologies
  • Required interoperability driven by partner business needs may affect optimization
  • Increased short-term investments will occur when trying to meet the needs of the enterprise

Counterarguments:

  • Optimize desktops solely to reduce cost and increase efficiency without regard to other business needs
  • Optimize desktops solely for other business needs without consideration of costs and increased efficiencies
  • Optimize desktops at agency or department level without consideration to enterprise needs
  • Optimized desktops at the enterprise level may break interoperability with external business partners

2. Return on Investment

Decisions concerning desktops will address ROI with consideration to product life cycles, manageability, training, maintenance, product/vendor, viability/stability, supported applications, user requirements, and enterprise/agency needs.

Benefits:

  • Long-term benefits are increased
  • Increases potential for new application compatibility
  • Reduces training costs
  • Reduces the number of desktop configurations

Implications:

  • Replacement cycles must be defined
  • Proactive planning for replacement cycles is needed
  • Budget implications will need to be addressed
  • A clear understanding of what ROI represents must be developed

Counterarguments:

  • Investment should be optimized to maximize short-term returns
  • There is no definitive research in the ROI area from which to validate ROI decisions
  • Impossible to hit such a moving target
  • Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) should be solely considered

3. Enterprise Purchasing

Purchasing of desktops will incorporate Enterprise level pricing agreements where appropriate.

Benefits:

  • Reduces state costs
  • Enhances standardization
  • Simplifies ordering
  • Improves vendor responsiveness to enterprise

Implications:

  • An enterprise level strategy needs to be developed
  • Staff would need to coordinate at the enterprise level
  • Enterprise level contract(s) will need to be negotiated
  • Cost effectiveness of contracts will need to be assessed

Counterarguments:

  • Forecasts of needs in the desktop arena are too difficult to define and would not create critical mass necessary for enterprise level agreements
  • Standardization can be counterproductive to enterprise and agency business needs
  • Contracts may not yield savings
  • Agencies will lose direct interaction with vendor

4. Best Practices

Management of desktops will use a "best practices" approach that encourages the sharing of knowledge across agencies with consideration to:

  • Lessons learned
  • Policies for system administration
  • Maintenance, upgrades, and fixes "best practices"
  • End-user education
  • Management & coordination of deployment (Hardware, Software, Tools)
  • Needs assessment

Benefits:

  • More effective/consistent implementation of desktops across the enterprise
  • Local, accessible repository of common knowledge
  • Fewer back-end support issues
  • Minimizes disparities of entry level desktops among agencies
  • More efficient, effective control

Implications:

  • Advisory and user groups need to be created to develop and support best practices
  • Follow-up with agencies to implement and encourage participation

Counterarguments:

  • Not all patches can be applied by all agencies to all systems due to some agency specific applications not working with the installation of the latest patches
  • Limits choices
  • May require additional infrastructure (i.e. hardware, software, people, space, and time)
  • IT staff may face more external time demands by being part of shared knowledge pool

5. Standard Technologies and Open Architecture

Priority will be given to open architecture products, realizing that current business practices and state of market may require use of industry standards.

Benefits:

  • Open, vendor-neutral systems provide flexibility and consistency that will allow agencies to respond more quickly in an environment of changing business requirements
  • Minimizes vendor dependency
  • Reduces migration complexity and allows greater flexibility in product replacement
  • Protects the enterprise against unexpected changes in vendor strategies and capabilities

Implications:

  • Industry standards, open architectures, and the products that use them need to be identified
  • Software/hardware changes may be required
  • Additional training may be required
  • Where conflicts exist between industry and open standards, a cautious approach must be taken to avoid being locked into vendor-centric solutions

Counterarguments:

  • May require additional infrastructure (i.e. hardware, software, people, space, and time)
  • Selections should be based on best fit for agency business practices
  • Knowledge pool may be lost because of changes required
  • Proprietary solution may be only one to meet business needs

6. Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity

Desktops will be selected and implemented with appropriate emphasis on fault-tolerance, stability, and recoverability to ensure the ongoing capability to support state agency applications.

Benefits:

  • Minimizes down time
  • Facilitates organized disaster recovery capability
  • Protects investment in operational data

Implications:

  • Desktops need to be categorized/prioritized according to business recovery needs (following Continuum of Government guidelines)
  • Desktops should be implemented with product maturity taken into consideration
  • Disaster recovery policies and standards need to be developed

Counterarguments:

  • Will require additional infrastructure and resources (i.e. hardware, software, people, space, and time)
  • Will increase system complexity

7. Security

Desktops will meet current security requirements set forth by the enterprise.

Benefits:

  • Provides protection and appropriately controlled access to information
  • Helps to ensure integrity of data
  • Enhances public trust
  • Ensures privacy of data

Implications:

  • Security policies, standards, and best practices need to be identified and published
  • Compliance to security policies, standards, and best practices needs to be monitored

Counterarguments:

  • The more security implemented, the more complex the environment.
  • Will require additional infrastructure and resources (i.e. hardware, software, people, space, and time)

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