Just about every company Forrester works with tells us they are driving to become Digital Businesses.  But not just ‘digital’ as a technology imperative – they are investing in digital to dramatically change how they serve their customers – with target benefits rippling over to customer retention and acquisition.  We call this focus Customer-obsessed Digital Business. 

There are four critical success factors for customer-obsessed digital business:

  • They are customer-led. Their customers – what they value and how to best serve their needs — are the center of business strategy and their operating model.
  • They are insight-driven.  Decisions — both the day-to-day operational as well as the strategic — are based on deep insights into their customers, markets, and the broader ecosystem.
  • They move fast.  They use speed to continually evolve how they   go to market and serve their customers. They balance opportunity — which must be responded to quickly — with caution — a desire  to ‘be perfect  out of the gate’.
  • They are connected.   They break down silos so as to have a shared understanding of business goals, and use a multi-discipline approach executing on strategy. 

An EA program could ignore these critical success factors – do what it’s always done for tech standards and application designs.  But if it does, it is missing an opportunity, ignoring a key business imperative   and sub-optimizing its own value. 

Forrester and InfoWorld would like to highlight the EA programs that have changed how they work – embracing the opportunities for helping their business be customer-led, insights-driven, fast, and connected.

If you have a story to tell, Eric Knorr – Chief Editor of Infoworld — and I encourage you to submit it to the Forrester/InfoWorld 2017 Enterprise Architecture Awards.  Describe how you are helping your firm succeed at its strategy, such as:

  • You have an innovative way of explaining and positioning EA to your business
  • You led the way to bringing more customer and market insights into strategic processes of your organization.
  • You guided the development and execution of a digital business strategy.
  • You helped your firm embrace Agile methods and scaled these methods to the enterprise.
  • Your team has ‘cracked the nut’ of measuring EA’s contribution and value.
  • Or any other way you helped your business move to a customer-obsessed digital business

Want some inspiration? Read about the 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011 and 2010 winners.

As with the previous five EA Awards, what we look for and how we judge hasn’t changed:

  • We’re looking for submissions about an EA program — about what your EA program did, not about a project that you were peripherally involved with.
  • You should be able to point to business impact and benefits.
  • The judges for this year’s winners are all from previous years’ winners, so your submission needs to convince your peers that it shows impact and offers a model for other EA programs.


  • Submissions are open today. Submit here.
  • Submissions close on June 30.
  • We’ll notify semifinalists by August 1. At that time, we’ll ask for additional information.
  • We’ll announce winners on Sept 18.