Using Enterprise Architecture to Transform Service Delivery: The U.S. Federal Government's Human Resources Line of Business

Using Enterprise Architecture to Transform Service Delivery: The U.S. Federal Government's Human Resources Line of Business

Timothy Biggert (IBM Global Business Services, USA)
Copyright: © 2009 |Pages: 33
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-068-4.ch014
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This chapter provides a case study on how the U.S. Office of Personnel Management has led the establishment of the Human Resources Line of Business (HR LOB). It explains how the HR LOB program has used enterprise architecture to drive transformation to a new Human Resources service delivery model across the United States Federal government. The authors propose that the common view and vocabulary that EA artifacts provide, along with the collaborative governance that took place to create the artifacts, has produced a solid business foundation for this extensive business transformation effort.
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Enterprise architecture synthesizes a business entity – and much of its complexity – into a single integrated set of structures that can be used as a basis for strategy and planning. “In a large modern enterprise, a rigorously defined framework is necessary to be able to capture a vision of the ‘entire system’ in all its dimensions and complexity. Enterprise architecture (EA) is a framework which is able to coordinate the many facets that make up the fundamental essence of an enterprise. It is the master plan which ‘acts as an integrating force’ between aspects of business planning” (Stevenson, 1995, para. 2).

The United States Office of Management and Budget has formulated an enterprise architecture strategy for the U.S. government that can help government agencies manage complexity and move toward innovation and transformation – informed and enabled by enterprise architecture. This chapter is about the U.S. Federal government’s transformation of service delivery for Human Resources using enterprise architecture and reinforced by collaborative governance.

The Human Resources Line of Business (HR LOB) is driving transformation of Federal Human Resources service delivery via enterprise architecture. The HR LOB enterprise architecture provides a common, government-wide view and vocabulary for the HR function – a view and vocabulary that provide a basis for common, government-wide solutions that agencies will implement to realize the vision and goals of the Federal government’s HR transformation.

Using broad-based collaboration as a fundamental governance principle, the HR Line of Business program at the U.S. Office of Personnel Management was able to achieve consensus on its enterprise architecture and use that EA to define shared services-based service delivery expectations for the future Federal HR operation. Under the leadership of the HR LOB program, hundreds of HR professionals representing three dozen agencies came together in dozens of work sessions over a four year period to define a government-wide HR enterprise architecture.

The results of this collaboration are presented in the pages that follow. This chapter is organized into the following sections:

  • BACKGROUND: Provides environmental and historical context for the U.S. Government’s electronic government initiatives and the events that led to the formation of the HR LOB program.

  • ENTERPRISE ARCHITECTURE: Describes how the HR LOB EA helped achieve the vision of standardization of HR processes across the Federal HR function.

  • GOVERNANCE: Explains how HR LOB used collaborative governance to develop an EA necessary to standardize and modernize HR services delivery.

  • TARGET REQUIREMENTS FOR SHARED SERVICE CENTERS: Describes how the HR LOB EA has been used to drive implementation – by compiling and developing the solution-level target requirements for shared service centers.

  • LESSONS LEARNED: Outlines critical lessons learned while developing an EA for the HR LOB.

  • FUTURE TRENDS AND RESEARCH: Provides insight into how EA can be used to help government calibrate how it delivers shared services to its customers.



Innovation in the use of technology is driving a revolution in business today, enabling the creation of new businesses and business structures. Homeowners can shop for refinance loans from their own homes. Businesses can integrate suppliers and customers into their own end-to-end business processes with seamless precision. Companies can outsource functions to other companies located on the other side of the planet.

Fueled by technology, the pace of change is in fact accelerating. According to McDavid (1999):

Complete Chapter List

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List of Reviewers
Table of Contents
John A. Zachman
Pallab Saha
Pallab Saha
Chapter 1
Pallab Saha
Countries across the world are pushing their frontiers in governance in the move to information economy, and governments play a pivotal role in this... Sample PDF
A Methodology for Government Transformation with Enterprise Architecture
Chapter 2
Marc M. Lankhorst, Guido I.H.M. Bayens
This chapter describes the development and future directions of a service-oriented reference architecture for the Dutch government. For several... Sample PDF
A Service-Oriented Reference Architecture for E-Government
Chapter 3
Amit Bhagwat
This chapter introduces the concept of Beacon Architecture as a formalized and ordered grouping of architectural elements, describing the... Sample PDF
Role of Beacon Architecture in Mitigating Enterprise Architecture Challenges of the Public Sector
Chapter 4
Hong Sik Kim, Sungwook Moon
Quite a good amount of time has been spent seeking appropriate solutions to handle the giant information technology expenditure not only in... Sample PDF
Maturity Model Based on Quality Concept of Enterprise Information Architecture (EIA)
Chapter 5
Alan Dyer
Enterprise Architecture is the organising logic for business processes and Information Technology infrastructure, the purpose of which is to create... Sample PDF
Measuring the Benefits of Enterprise Architecture: Knowledge Management Maturity
Chapter 6
William S. Boddie
An effective enterprise architecture (EA) capability enables an organization to develop sound enterprise plans, make informed human, materiel, and... Sample PDF
The Criticality of Transformational Leadership to Advancing United States Government Enterprise Architecture Adoption
Chapter 7
Jay Ramanathan
Public institutions that are organized in hierarchies find it difficult to address crisis or other unique requirements that demand networked... Sample PDF
Adaptive IT Architecture as a Catalyst for Network Capability in Government
Chapter 8
Chris Aitken
This chapter describes a design integrity framework for developing models of any entity of interest at various levels of abstraction. The design... Sample PDF
Design Integrity and Enterprise Architecture Governance
Chapter 9
Dwight V. Toavs
Few government executives can explain the enterprise architecture of his or her agency, and it is rare to find a political executive who is able to... Sample PDF
Policy Mapping: Relating Enterprise Architecture to Policy Goals
Chapter 10
Klaus D. Niemann
A comprehensive enterprise architecture management has strategic and operative aspects. Strategic tasks cover the identification of appropriate... Sample PDF
Enterprise Architecture Management and its Role in IT Governance and IT Investment Planning
Chapter 11
Vassilios Peristeras, Konstantinos Tarabanis
Departing from the lack of coherent and ready-to-use models and domain descriptions for public administration, we present here our effort to build a... Sample PDF
The GEA: Governance Enterprise Architecture-Framework and Models
Chapter 12
Bram Klievink, Wijnand Derks, Marijn Janssen
The ambition of the Dutch government is to create a demand-driven government by means of effective use of information and communication technology.... Sample PDF
Enterprise Architecture and Governance Challenges for Orchestrating Public-Private Cooperation
Chapter 13
Neil Fairhead, John Good
This chapter provides an approach to Enterprise Architecture that is people-led, as a contrast to being led by technology or modelling methodology.... Sample PDF
People-Led Enterprise Architecture
Chapter 14
Timothy Biggert
This chapter provides a case study on how the U.S. Office of Personnel Management has led the establishment of the Human Resources Line of Business... Sample PDF
Using Enterprise Architecture to Transform Service Delivery: The U.S. Federal Government's Human Resources Line of Business
Chapter 15
Scott Bernard, Shuyuan Mary Ho
Government agencies are committing an increasing amount of resources to information security and data privacy solutions in order to meet legal and... Sample PDF
Enterprise Architecture as Context and Method for Designing and Implementing Information Security and Data Privacy Controls in Government Agencies
Chapter 16
John Mo, Laszlo Nemes
With a plethora of architectures, modelling techniques and methodologies on offer, it is difficult to decide how to begin building an enterprise and... Sample PDF
Architecture Based Engineering of Enterprises with Government Involvement
Chapter 17
Leonidas G. Anthopoulos
E-government evolves according to strategic plans with the coordination of central Governments. This top-down procedure succeeds in slow but... Sample PDF
Collaborative Enterprise Architecture for Municipal Environments
Chapter 18
Nigel Martin
This chapter describes the development and use of government enterprise architectures for the framing and alignment of the core business processes... Sample PDF
Government Enterprise Architectures: Enabling the Alignment of Business Processes and Information Systems
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