Strategy Markup Language (StratML) is an XML vocabulary and schema for strategic plans. It was originally intended to be used by US government. Its scope is now expanded. According to this updated presentation:
The vision is to establish StratML as an international (ISO) voluntary consensus standard for potential use, by all organizations worldwide.
At a high level, it looks as if the schema can be adopted for use in any large organization to track initiatives.
From StratML web site, the broad goals of StratML are to:
- Facilitate the sharing, referencing, indexing, discovery, linking, reuse, and analyses of the elements of strategic plans, including goal and objective statements as well as the names and descriptions of stakeholder groups and any other content commonly included in strategic plans.
- Enable the concept of “strategic alignment” to be realized in literal linkages among goal and objective statements and all other records created by organizations in the routine course of their business processes.
- Facilitate the discovery of potential performance partners who share common goals and objectives and/or either produce inputs needed or require outputs produced by the organization compiling the strategic plan.
- Facilitate stakeholder feedback on strategic goals and objectives.
- Facilitate updating and maintenance of discrete elements of strategic plans without requiring review and approval of the entire plan through bureaucratic channels, thereby helping to make the strategic planning process more agile and responsive to stakeholder feedback and changing circumstances, thus helping to overcome the tendency of strategic plans to become outdated “shelfware”.
- Reduce the needless time, effort, inconsistencies, and delays associated with maintaining data redundantly in myriad “stovepipe” systems rather than referencing the authoritative sources.
- Enable agencies to comply with the provisions of subsections 202(b)(4) & (5) and 207(d) of the eGov Act, which respectively require agencies to:
- Work together to link their performance goals to key groups, including citizens, businesses, and other governments, as well as internal Federal Government operations; and
- Adopt open standards (e.g., StratML) enabling the organization and categorization of Government information in a way that is searchable electronically and interoperably across agencies.
Can we use something like StratML? You bet.
Let us take it one step further. If each project or initiative has a set of goals and objectives, and if we can use commmon vocabulary to articulate them, we may be getting off to a great start. Supplement this with a similar vocabulary for projects (let us call it ProjectML) which can include deliverables and interfaces (where applicable) and libraries (produced), we may even have some cool technology to identify reuse or cross-pollinate. It does not have to be XML, but using XML has the advantage of taking this format and sharing it with others and refining it.