Value Stream Analysis – mastering your organisational flows 

Value Stream Analysis – mastering your organisational flows

Business Architecture (BA) is typically seen as the business-side of Enterprise Architecture Management (EAM). It does not mean that IT Architects or Solution Architects do not care about the business, but it emphasizes that BA has a broader focus on the intersection between an organisation’s current and future delivery, and its market position.

Among the predominant themes of Business Architecture, we find Customers, Segments, Offerings (also referred to as (digital) products and services), Business Capabilities, and Value Streams. To emphasize the flows of processing the offerings for the customers in the market, this typically divides the BA in the external and internal game, please see blog post.

What are Value Streams?

Value Streams are a way to understand the various flows of value through an organisation. Value Stream Analysis thus represents an inside-out perspective of Business Architecture.

Value Streams are beneficial to express the “bigger picture” of EAM. However, in order to identify the bottlenecks and inefficiencies in the processes and heat-map them at the Value Stream Stages and the underlying business processes, we need to perform Value Stream Analysis (VSA).

VSA thus represents a way to understand the structure and logical flow through an organisation to deliver offerings, centered around a senior stakeholder. While Business Capabilities typically represent what an organisation already does or aspires to do at a conceptual and logical enterprise level, the Value Streams are organised around senior stakeholders who aim to optimise their value generation through the logical flow of processing.

The fact that value streams are organised around people with accountabilities make them typically stronger within the organisation; so, the Value Streams somehow supplement the Business Capabilities which are typically preferred by Enterprise Architects. Value streams also align well with agile practices such as SAFE, scrum, etc.

Value Streams represent a key theme within Business Architecture and help organisations visualize flows of information and value in the processing of offerings. While many organisations historically have given-up on modeling business processes, the Value Stream approach has an element of top-down and “bigger picture” that helps providing a light-weight approach to demonstrate quick value.

Typically, Value Streams are separated into stages where each stage may be broken into business processes, aligning closer to the intersection between business processes and Applications Architecture. Hence, the value streams are typically limited in numbers and help provide a holistic view of the processing across an organisation, rather than look for greater details in the business processes.


Ideally, managing the portfolio of Value Streams is like managing the portfolio of applications or projects. It is an ongoing process that requires updates whenever there is a new set of offerings, or customer (segments), or internal set of deliveries.

As value streams are organised around senior stakeholder(s), have a perspective of value flow and delivery, they are typically accelerated with the use of an EAM tool such as next-insight, that allows quick input to master and visualize the flows, helping to provide more input about the purpose, details, and break-down.

If it is a new analysis, it is important to focus only on a few value streams at a time, then gradually expand to cover the entire enterprise. Mapping the organisation is typically done with this approach step-by-step, typically centered around senior stakeholders and offerings, or segments of customers.

As the amount of value streams increases, the overall structures of process areas and categories can be added to eventually align the classical Business Process Management (BPM) with the Value Streams Analysis (VSA).

Tool & Acceleration

With a modern tool such as next-insight, you gain great help to identify, visualize and provide governance around your Value Streams. Value Streams are not islands of information but can benefit from other architectural domains to identify stronger relationships at more detailed level. Hence, to succeed with value streams, it is important not to treat it as a separate and isolated discipline, it deeply depends on the information already available in most EAM repositories.

next-insight is a leading choice for Business Architecture and Enterprise Architecture. It is a comprehensive tool that can help organizations visualize and analyze their Value Streams and identify areas for improvements and make data-driven decisions.

We can help you gain control over your IT landscape and start planning with VSA to keep processes and data up-to-date. If you need help to get started, or a tool that can accelerate your journey, don’t hesitate to contact us

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