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Towards Architecture (& Learning, Designing and Decision-making) Topologies Sustainable Fast Flow of Change

Eduardo da Silva
March 22, 2024
61

Towards Architecture (& Learning, Designing and Decision-making) Topologies Sustainable Fast Flow of Change

In this talk, I discuss a concept I have been working on called “Architecture Topologies” (https://esilva.net/architecture-topologies), a set of thinking models and practices to help orgs understand, discuss, and improve their approaches to architecture. Having explicit language to do that is essential so organizations can achieve a more sustainable flow of change and better respond to their environment.

During the talk, I will introduce the basic ideas and discuss some interesting architecture topologies, such as “Architecture as an Enabling Team”, “Anybody Architects” or “Architecture Modernization Enabling Teams” (AMETs). I will also show some examples of how bol.com, the largest online retailer in the Netherlands and Belgium, has evolved its architecture topologies over the last two decades. Through that journey, we will see how it is crucial for organizations to continuously adapt their organizational structures and topologies, their approaches to architecture, and their ways of working to respond effectively and sustainably to their changing environment.

By being more explicit on how to approach architecture and embracing its continuous evolution, modern organizations can become more equipped to achieve a sustainable and fast flow of change and cope with their increasing demands.

Eduardo da Silva

March 22, 2024
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  1. Towards Architecture (& Learning, Designing and Decision-making) Topologies Sustainable Fast

    Flow of Change Eduardo da Silva, PhD Independent consultant on sociotechnical systems, architecture & leadership modernization (esilva.net consulting | [email protected]) FastFlow NL, 2024/03/21
  2. Towards Architecture (& Learning, Designing and Decision-making) Topologies Sustainable Fast

    Flow of Change Eduardo da Silva, PhD Independent consultant on sociotechnical systems, architecture & leadership modernization (esilva.net consulting | [email protected]) FastFlow NL, 2024/03/21 ⚠ This is going to be an interactive session, so we may need to skip some parts of the 80+ slides. If you want to watch a close version to this talk in more detail, you can check my Keynote at Agile meets Architecture 2023 (https://esilva.net/talks/#agilemeetsarchitecture_2023)
  3. Towards Architecture (& Learning, Designing and Decision-making) Topologies Sustainable Fast

    Flow of Change Eduardo da Silva, PhD Independent consultant on sociotechnical systems, architecture & leadership modernization (esilva.net consulting | [email protected]) FastFlow NL, 2024/03/21
  4. Towards Architecture (& Learning, Designing and Decision-making) Topologies Sustainable Fast

    Flow of Change Eduardo da Silva, PhD Independent consultant on sociotechnical systems, architecture & leadership modernization (esilva.net consulting | [email protected]) FastFlow NL, 2024/03/21 Ability to respond fast & sustainably to the environment
  5. esilva.net ❓In your org, are people close to problems able

    to experiment & learn… …so they can better design and decide to respond to the needs & demands in the environmenT? 8 Photo by Cole Patrick on Unsplash
  6. esilva.net ‼ Modern orgs that are not nurturing conditions for

    sustainable Learning, designing and decision-making will struggle to respond to their environment 9 Photo by Cole Patrick on Unsplash
  7. esilva.net 12 Image & Credits: https://thecynefin.co/about-us/about-cynefin-framework Most modern orgs have

    a lot of activities here… “Best practices” and expert knowledge is not enough! We need to “probe > sense > respond”
  8. esilva.net 13 Image & Credits: https://thecynefin.co/about-us/about-cynefin-framework ⚠Many organizations are using

    practices from these domains to work on their “Complex & unpredictable Domains”... ☹ Most modern orgs have a lot of activities here… “Best practices” and expert knowledge is not enough! We need to “probe > sense > respond”
  9. esilva.net 14 Image & Credits: https://thecynefin.co/about-us/about-cynefin-framework Most modern orgs are

    here… Unpredictable but “all is inter-connected” “Best practices” and expert knowledge is not enough! We need to “probe > sense > respond” ⚠many organizations are using practices from these domains to work on their “Complex Domains”... ⚠ classic “controlling operating models” and “Ivory Tower / Expert-driven Design & Decision-making” are not effective in Complex Domains!
  10. esilva.net 15 💡Move towards org cultures, structures and incentives that

    allow us to navigate and respond in the (more) uncertain & fast changing environments we “live in” Photo by Ronaldo de Oliveira on Unsplash
  11. esilva.net 🎯 Sustainable Fast Flow of Change Operating Models 🌳

    16 Sociotechnical Systems Evolution & Architecture, Eduardo da Silva
  12. esilva.net 🎯 Sustainable Fast Flow of Change Operating Models 🌳

    17 Sociotechnical Systems Evolution & Architecture, Eduardo da Silva 🎯We want to continuously go fast over this “cycle” (from ideas to value in front of the customer)
  13. esilva.net 🎯 Sustainable Fast Flow of Change Operating Models 🌳

    18 Sociotechnical Systems Evolution & Architecture, Eduardo da Silva How can we do that?
  14. esilva.net 🎯 Sustainable Fast Flow of Change Operating Models 🌳

    19 Sociotechnical Systems Evolution & Architecture, Eduardo da Silva “Language” to help us discuss how we organize and evolve our teams (& org) to support sustainable fast flow of change
  15. esilva.net 💡 Team Topologies allows us to have an explicit

    language to discuss how our teams are organized, and using the different interaction modes (and principles) evolve to better topologies 22
  16. esilva.net ❓But, how are we understanding, discussing and improving our

    approaches to architecture (Learning, Designing and Decision-making)? 23 In the teams Across teams Across the org
  17. esilva.net 24 🔬Learning: minimal and made in isolation 📝Designing: outside

    teams (by Architects and controlling Managers) 🤝Decision-making: outside teams (by Architects and Managers (“boss”)) 🔬Learning: maximized across the org (no silos) 📝Designing: in teams & with teams involvement 🤝Decision-making: by teams close to problems Moving to better ways of Learning, Designing and Decision-making
  18. esilva.net Architecture Topologies 🎯 Thinking models and practices to understand

    and evolve the approach to Architecture (Learning, Designing and Decision-making) in the different scopes of the organization 🔗 esilva.net/architecture-topologies 25
  19. esilva.net Architecture Topologies 🎯 understand and evolve the approach to

    Architecture (Learning, Designing and Decision-making) in the different scopes of the organization 🔗 esilva.net/architecture-topologies ⚠ although I speak about “Architecture”, this is about ability to “learn, design and decide” on the things that matter in a scope of work… 🤔 I may change the name 26
  20. esilva.net Architecture Topologies (ATs) Map 27 💡 example of visualization

    we can use to discuss & understand what may be the important topics to improve on
  21. esilva.net 29 *Would you like architects with your architecture? |

    images credits: Gregor Hohpe Some Categories of Approaches to Architecture* (Stefan Toth) ⚠Architecture from outside the scope 💡this is a gradual evolution… which will take years, and varies from team to team
  22. esilva.net 30 *Would you like architects with your architecture? |

    images credits: Gregor Hohpe Some Categories of Approaches to Architecture* (Stefan Toth) ⚠Architecture from outside the scope ❓Wher e are you in your teams?
  23. esilva.net Architecture Topologies (ATs) Map 32 ⚠Architecture from outside the

    scope Architecture Approach Learning Designing Decision-making
  24. esilva.net 34 Architecture Approach Learning Designing Decision-making Notice how the

    groupings of Architecture approach, and learning, designing and decision-making tend to be close to each other…
  25. esilva.net 35 Architecture Approach Learning Designing Decision-making Notice how the

    groupings of Architecture approach, and learning, designing and decision-making tend to be close to each other…
  26. esilva.net 36 Architecture Approach Learning Designing Decision-making 💡different parts of

    the same organization have different ways of approaching architecture… and different challenges
  27. esilva.net 37 Architecture Approach Learning Designing Decision-making ⏭ What Next?

    Understand: ⇢ constraints / challenges 🚫 ⇢ Define ways to improve 📈 🔁 keep on doing this ⇢ This never stops!
  28. esilva.net 39 Tech Arch Org (& Way of Work) Prod

    & Events Tech Org (& Way of Work) bol.com 1999 - 2019 (Org + Tech + Architecture evolution) Arch.
  29. esilva.net 40 Tech Arch Org (& Way of Work) Monoliths

    Tech Org (& Way of Work) Waterfall Phase 1 (1999 - ~2010): Waterfall, monoliths & centralized arch Arch. Centralized (by Architects) Prod & Events
  30. esilva.net 41 Tech Arch Org (& Way of Work) Monoliths

    Tech Org (& Way of Work) Waterfall Phase 1 (1999 - ~2010): Waterfall, monoliths & centralized arch Arch. Centralized (by Architects) ⚠ “need for scaling” Prod & Events
  31. esilva.net 43 🤔 Reflection ► Architecture by Architects in all

    scopes will eventually “block” fast flow of change (limited knowledge + too many things) Architects doing all the design & decision making
  32. esilva.net 44 Tech Arch Org (& Way of Work) Monoliths

    Tech Org (& Way of Work) Waterfall Phase 1 (1999 - ~2010): Waterfall, monoliths & centralized arch Arch. Centralized (by Architects) ⚠ “need for scaling” Prod & Events
  33. esilva.net 45 Tech Arch Org (& Way of Work) Monoliths

    Tech Org (& Way of Work) Waterfall Agile DevOps Teams (Micro)services ~30 ~10 Phase 2 (~2010 - ~2018): Autonomous Teams Arch. Centralized (by Architects) Teams + Archs “need for scaling” Prod & Events ⭐ this is structural changes - org + tech + arch, it is not just adding another small process!
  34. esilva.net 48 Architecture in teams done by the teams; architects

    doing architecture around teams 🤔 Reflection ► What does it take to allow for teams to maximize learning and lead the design and decision-making in their scope of work?
  35. esilva.net 49 🤔 Reflection ► What does it take to

    allow for teams to maximize learning and lead the design and decision-making in their scope of work? ⭐ Invest heavily on teams being & feeling empowered to own, design and decide the work in their scope: feel proud of that
  36. esilva.net 50 🤔 Reflection ► What does it take to

    allow for teams to maximize learning and lead the design and decision-making in their scope of work? ⭐ Team > Individuals (get the team to learn from each other - and others around them) ⭐ Invest heavily on teams being & feeling empowered to own, design and decide the work in their scope: feel proud of that
  37. esilva.net 51 🤔 Reflection ► What does it take to

    allow for teams to maximize learning and lead the design and decision-making in their scope of work? ⭐ Invest heavily on teams being & feeling empowered to own, design and decide the work in their scope: feel proud of that ⭐ Team > Individuals (get the team to learn from each other - and others around them) ⭐ Boundaries should be stable, but they are not static… Get localized collaboration to improve team boundaries
  38. esilva.net 52 🤔 Reflection ► What does it take to

    allow for teams to maximize learning and lead the design and decision-making in their scope of work? ⭐ Invest heavily on teams being & feeling empowered to own, design and decide the work in their scope: feel proud of that ⭐ Team > Individuals (get the team to learn from each other - and others around them) ⭐ Boundaries should be stable, but they are not static… Get localized collaboration to improve team boundaries ⭐ Invest on Knowledge Exchange Regular “Knowledge Exchange Sessions”; Internal Conferences; Pairing/Mobbing…
  39. esilva.net 53 Tech Arch Org (& Way of Work) Monoliths

    Tech Org (& Way of Work) Waterfall Agile DevOps Teams (Micro)services ~30 ~10 Phase 2 (~2010 - ~2018): Autonomous Teams Arch. Centralized (by Architects) Teams + Archs “need for scaling” Prod & Events
  40. esilva.net 54 Tech Arch Org (& Way of Work) Monoliths

    Tech Org (& Way of Work) Waterfall Agile DevOps Teams (Micro)services ~30 ~10 Phase 2 (~2010 - ~2018): Autonomous Teams Arch. Centralized (by Architects) Teams + Archs “need for scaling” Teams capable of iterating quickly on their scope Prod & Events
  41. esilva.net 55 Tech Arch Org (& Way of Work) Monoliths

    Tech Org (& Way of Work) Waterfall Agile DevOps Teams (Micro)services ~30 ~10 Phase 2 (~2010 - ~2018): Autonomous Teams Arch. Centralized (by Architects) Teams + Archs “need for scaling” Teams capable of iterating quickly on their scope Able to deploy quickly and independently Prod & Events
  42. esilva.net 56 Tech Arch Org (& Way of Work) Monoliths

    Tech Org (& Way of Work) Waterfall Agile DevOps Teams (Micro)services ~30 ~10 Phase 2 (~2010 - ~2018): Autonomous Teams Arch. Centralized (by Architects) Teams + Archs “need for scaling” Teams capable of iterating quickly on their scope Able to deploy quickly and independently Teams able to design and decide things on their scope Prod & Events
  43. esilva.net 57 Tech Arch Org (& Way of Work) Monoliths

    Tech Org (& Way of Work) Waterfall Agile DevOps Teams (Micro)services ~30 ~10 Phase 2 (~2010 - ~2018): Autonomous Teams Arch. Centralized (by Architects) Teams + Archs “need for scaling” Many teams Prod & Tech Silos Prod & Events
  44. esilva.net 58 Tech Arch Org (& Way of Work) Monoliths

    Tech Org (& Way of Work) Waterfall Agile DevOps Teams (Micro)services ~30 ~10 Phase 2 (~2010 - ~2018): Autonomous Teams Arch. Centralized (by Architects) Teams + Archs “need for scaling” Many teams Prod & Tech Silos Organic net of Microservices Prod & Events
  45. esilva.net 59 Tech Arch Org (& Way of Work) Monoliths

    Tech Org (& Way of Work) Waterfall Agile DevOps Teams (Micro)services ~30 ~10 Phase 2 (~2010 - ~2018): Autonomous Teams Arch. Centralized (by Architects) Teams + Archs “need for scaling” Many teams Prod & Tech Silos Organic net of Microservices Architects overwhelmed “keeping things together around teams” Prod & Events
  46. esilva.net 60 Tech Arch Org (& Way of Work) Monoliths

    Tech Org (& Way of Work) Waterfall Agile DevOps Teams (Micro)services ~30 ~100 ~10 ~600 Phase 2 (~2010 - ~2018): Autonomous Teams Arch. Centralized (by Architects) Teams + Architects (anything around teams) ⚠ ⚠ ⚠ ⚠ “need for sustainable fast flow of change” Prod & Events
  47. esilva.net 62 🧐 Reflection ► How can we improve this?

    Not just “processes”, but structural and organization changes that may help? Architects managing a lot of the “things” around the teams & teams being “islands”
  48. esilva.net • Team scope has all disciplines needed (⭐including “product”

    and “tech” => NO SILOS!) • Product scope groups teams working on related value streams (e.g., Inspire to Buy has Recommendation and Search Teams) Re-adjusting Organization Structure 63 Product Taxonomy, Ross Clanton, Amy Walters, Jason Zubrick, Pat Birkeland, Mik Kersten, Alan Nance, and Anders Wallgren
  49. esilva.net 65 Architecture Modernization Enabling Team (AMET) 💡AMETs can help

    you on bigger changes and modernizations, particularly when these are multi-team and when the involved teams are not yet ready to do this one their own
  50. esilva.net 66 Teams owning architecture on their scope with clearer

    alignment to the multi-team scope they are part of (with Enabling Architects, PMs & EMs)
  51. esilva.net 67 Teams owning architecture on their scope with clearer

    alignment to the multi-team scope they are part of (with Enabling Architects, PMs & EMs)
  52. esilva.net 68 Teams owning architecture on their scope with clearer

    alignment to the multi-team scope they are part of (with Enabling Architects, PMs & EMs) 💡“Architecture as Enabling Team”
  53. esilva.net 69 Teams owning architecture on their scope with clearer

    alignment to the multi-team scope they are part of (with Enabling Architects, PMs & EMs) ⭐ Connected and Purposeful Org focused on learning and allowing people on their scope of work to drive their design and decision-making
  54. esilva.net 70 Tech Arch Org (& Way of Work) Monoliths

    Products Tech Org (& Way of Work) Waterfall Agile Product Teams DevOps Teams (Micro)services ~30 ~100 ~10 ~600 ~50 Phase 3 (~2017 - ??): Product organization Arch. Centralized (by Architects) Teams + Architects (anything around teams) Teams (+ Enabling Product Architects) “need for sustainable fast flow of change” Prod & Events
  55. esilva.net Products Waterfall Agile Product Teams DevOps Teams ~30 ~100

    bol.com 1999 - 2019 71 “need for scaling” “sustainable fast flow of change” 💡change is continuous and takes time and support from leadership
  56. esilva.net 72 ⭐ Our business changes, and so is the

    way we organize our teams and systems and how we approach architecture (learning, designing and decision-making)
  57. esilva.net 73 ⚠ Change & Uncertainty will not stop ✅

    Embrace it, and make sure you evolve your organization structures & approach Architecture to address that 💡Focus on removing constraints, not managing them Photo by Ronaldo de Oliveira on Unsplash
  58. esilva.net Thank you! Eduardo da Silva, PhD Independent consultant on

    sociotechnical systems, architecture & leadership modernization Team Topologies Valued Practitioner (TTVP) # esilva.net consulting # [email protected] | emgsilva esilva.net/products ⬇ ℹmore products coming soon ℹthe topic of this talk is covered in these workshops & sessions: https://esilva.net/products/effe ctive-architecture-topologies https://academy.teamtopologies.com/ courses/effective-enabling-teams