Dataflow Analysis View

The Dataflow Analysis View is a great way to understand how your assets are used
and what services they support.

Connecting the dots

The OBASHI Methodology has at its heart 5 Core Principles, but the first is key:

The understanding of the flow of data is fundamental to an organisation’s financial well-being.

By mapping how data flows between your people, process and technology using OBASHI’s Dataflow Analysis Views you can see how each asset makes a service or process work.

You’ll gain an understanding of the chain of elements that must be in place for data to flow, and even more importantly what the impact might be should one of the links fail.

Dataflow Analysis Views let you connect the dots… to see the clear picture of business operation.

Explore DAVs in more detail

Try clicking the top right  corner of the images below to explore this selection of Dataflow Analysis Views in more detail. You can zoom in and pan around the diagrams.  By following the flow of the DAV from start to finish you’ll see the path of the data from start to finish, and the assets it passes through on the way.  As you can see, it’s an easy way to portray and understand how an organisations uses it’s assets to support operations.

You’ll notice that extra information can be added into the DAVs. In this example we’ve added the time taken (the latency) for data to pass through and between the assets. You can attribute any information to a Dataflow Analysis View.

DAVs are not size restricted. Individual DAVs can also be combined together to create a larger DAV. So if you’ve got flows of data which are often repeated across multiple services there’s no need to recreate them lots of times. It also means that you only need to make a single update should things change and all of your DAVs are updated automatically.

It’s not uncommon for assets to be re-used multiple times in a dataflow as the data goes back and forth between assets. You’ll notice in the top left of the DAV we show the number of steps in the dataflow, but also the number of assets. This DAV only covers 8 assets but contains 27 steps.

If you think of the DAV as the chain of assets, or elements, that together allow the data to flow it’s easy to see the impact if a weak link breaks. Breaking the chain, whether through scheduled change control work or equipment failure, will stop data flowing. Understanding what data flows through which assets can prevent unintended consequences of downtime.

Traditional data flow diagrams tend to concentrate on just the IT systems, and usually concentrate on a single niche activity – be that at a network level or an application level. With OBASHI’s Dataflow Analysis View we see the interactions between the business processes, through the application layers and down to the computer hardware and network infrastructure giving much more context to make better informed decisions.

When we add statistical, financial or operational data to a DAV we ensure we conform to The Laws of Digital Dynamics.
These laws ensure we don’t mislead the viewer of the DAV by defining a consistence of approach between the values shown and how summary data is provided, as shown to the left of the diagram.

Each DAV can also have a valuation attributed to it. If the DAV shows a transaction or batched process, that the valuation could be a cost per transaction or batch. If you’re modelling a continuous process it could be you want to attribute an hourly or daily value of that flow to your organisation.

Individual layers can be removed from the DAV as shown above. It’s important that removing layers from a DAV do not mislead by hiding information from the viewer, so a dotted red line is used to represent the fact that elements have been removed.  Additionally, any statistical information for those removed elements is summed and presented against the red dotted line.  Take a look at the two DAVs above and you’ll immediately see which elements have been removed.