Managing the IT Capability Enterprise Architecture Management BP (British Petroleum) Case Study


BP itcmf

Managing the IT Capability Enterprise Architecture Management British Petroleum Case Study

Company Profile – British Petroleum
British Petroleum (BP) is a global oil and gas company with operations in 100 countries and exploration and production in 29 countries. BP is globally ranked number 3 in Oil and Gas and employs 97,600 people in more than 100 offices worldwide. The company recorded sales in 2007 of $284.3 billion with a net income of $17.8 billion and has over 1.2 million shareholders.

IT plays a critical role in BP’s operations with 2,500 full time staff (4,000 including contractors and outsourcing providers). Enterprise Architecture is an essential part of IT governance and there

are 15 group Enterprise Architecture (EA) staff with 175 Solution Architects deployed across the IT function. The overall IT budget for BP is approximately $2.5 billion.

Why is Enterprise Architecture Management (EAM) critical for  BP?

The business need for Architecture Management

As with many IT organisations, BP IT is asked by business to consistently provide the right

capabilities, at the right time and at the right cost. There are a number of challenges to realising value from enterprise architecture frameworks including:
/// Traditionally, emphasis often tends to be on defining processes and artefacts for an ‘end state’ technical design when in reality business is ever changing
/// EA is often seen as a ‘program’ with enterprise wide implementation of best practices and control, which can often be perceived as constraining and/or controlling speed of innovation
/// Metrics and value indicators are can often be  absent  from discussions.
Enterprise Architecture Management is sometimes perceived as a governance program or control, thus diminishing the potential business  value of the effort.

BP’s need for Architecture Management

BP operates within a federated structure of Architecture with a consolidated Group EA function responsible for setting group-level technical standards and co-ordinating architecture activities across all the business facing IT teams. Each

major business unit has an embedded IT function (Integrated Supply & Trading, Exploration and Production and Refining and Marketing) with a Chief Architect who is responsible for embedding local Architecture Management practices. In order to realise economies of scale across BP, this organisational model requires:
/// Standardized frameworks, governance, processes and extended use of shared services
/// An integrated target architecture and increased EA input to  IT.

BP joined IVI and participated in pilot studies of the new Enterprise Architecture Framework. The EAM maturity level (Figure 1) is measured against eight key capability building blocks grouped by three category areas (Figure  2).

Maturity curve for Enterprise Architecture ManagementSource: Innovation Value  Institute

BP Assessment

Assessment results indicate a maturity level of 2 – Basic (Figure 2).
However the average maturity levels mask variation between EA teams. As the pilot was carried out from an individual point of view it enabled teams to focus on capabilities within their individual organisations and scope of responsibility. For almost all capabilities, one or more teams self-assessed at maturity level   ‘3’.

However there was significant variation across business units including:
/// Architecture activities take place at localised levels
/// Value informally understood but with a limited number of metrics captured
/// Architecture roles and responsibilities defined but vary considerably across  teams

The group EA function has the potential to deliver greater business value with the key areas of improvement, namely – Architecture Planning, Governance/Processes, Framework, Value measurement.


Average Capability Maturity for 6 Teams


Creating a Roadmap to increase EAM maturity The assessment provides a useful roadmap with key targets to address within the next 24 months by focussing on the highest priority areas and leveraging existing best practices.

Detailed View of Architecture Planning capability


Participation in the IT-CMF pilot test has delivered significant benefits to BP. One of the key findings for the company was the identification of varying maturity levels amongst different divisions within the company.

This is encouraging for all teams as it confirms  that higher maturity is achievable and not just aspirational. At the same time, it also provides a company specific model of ‘centres of excellence’ for different capabilities

Ivo 2010

Title: IT Capability Maturity Framework™ (IT-CMF™) 2nd edition
Author: Martin Curley , Jim Kenneally , Marian Carcary,
Price: € 74,15



For more information visit

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *