Thursday, March 29, 2007

Making Sense of Enterprise Architecture

There has been a lot of discussions on the meaing of Enterprise Architecture, especially recently with enterprise starting to adopt SOA. Following are a few different definitions of Enterprise Architecture, which are basically based on the context of the conversation.

Enterprise Architecture for the Business:
Typically enterprises have strategic objectives such as increasing the revenue by 20% per year, double the revenue in 5 years, increase the number of customers by 50% in 3 years, etc. Once these strategic objectives are established business needs to develop an actionable plan on how it plans to go about achieving this objective which could also be referred to as the "Enterprise Business Architecture".

Enterprise Architecture for IT:
Enterprise Architecture for IT is basically the bluepring, standards, processes, etc. to enable enterprises in achiving their stated business objectives.

The Enterprise Architecture Team:
This is the team responsible for working closely with key business and IT personnel to ensure alignment. This team consists of domain (business) architects who understand the business and are able to translate this for the IT, Technology Architecture who have domain expertise in a particular technology such as Portal, EAI, Mainframe, etc. and finally the Project Architects who are assigned to IT project to be the trusted advisor of the Project Manager, provide technical leadership to the IT project as well as ensure that each of the IT projects do not deviate from the Enterprise standards.

I agree and understand that these are very brief discussions and more of this shall be published soon by the Enterprise Architecture of the Future working group of the SOA Consortium.

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