Real IRM

Leading Enterprise Architecture Value™

What is Enterprise Architecture?

The definition for the term Enterprise Architecture (EA) is still somewhat elusive and we find several definitions in the industry:

ISO/IEC 42010: 2007 i defines ‘‘architecture’’ as: ‘‘the fundamental organization of a system, embodied in its components, their relationships to each other and the environment, and the principles governing its design and evolution.’’

TOGAF® ii embraces but does not strictly adhere to ISO/IEC 42010: 2007 terminology. The term Architecture has two meanings depending upon the context:

  • A formal description of a system or a detailed plan of the system at component level to guide its implementation.
  • The structure of components, their inter-relationships and the principles and guidelines governing their design and evolution over time.

Currently the Architecture Forum within The Open Group, responsible for TOGAF® is working on a formal response related to the definition of EA.

Wikipedia iii uses a number of sources to sum EA up in the following way:

“To some, 'enterprise architecture' refers either to the structure of a business, or the documents and diagrams that describe that structure. To others, 'enterprise architecture' refers to the business methods that seek to understand and document that structure. A third use of 'enterprise architecture' is a reference to a business team that uses EA methods to produce architectural descriptions of the structure of an enterprise.“

How Real IRM defines and uses EA

Enterprise Architecture is the cornerstone of Real IRM’s market focus. EA is the vehicle we use for integrating the resources necessary to create a complete view of the organisation, as well as to provide products and services to facilitate the organisation’s transition to an integrated environment with optimised processes that are responsive to change and to the delivery of the business strategy.

Enterprise Arcitecture Block

Defining the EA role within an organisation

An enterprise architecture role within an organisation is cross-disciplinary, requiring integration of diverse skills, methods and tools, within and beyond the technology community. Holistic EA is pragmatically developed through the ongoing collaboration between business role players, the IT executive team, and the EA team.

In order to understand EA and our solution offering, it is important to comprehend how the knowledge frameworks, the EA Capability, and the Business, Information, Data, Application and Technology (BIDAT) architectures are systemically inter-related.


i http://www.iso.org/iso/catalogue_detail.htm?csnumber=45991

ii http://opengroup.co.za/tog/togaf®

iii http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Enterprise_architecture

We advise the reader to refer to the diagram while reading the following subsections.

 

Avoiding Perils to EA


In this series we examine the most common reasons that Enterprise Architecture fails, and provide practical guidance on how to avoid these pitfalls. We look at the Chief Architect and the core EA team; the organisational positioning of the EA function; the concept of ‘Ivory Towers’; EA’s vision, strategy and direction; executive sponsorship; collaboration; and finally the areas of EA tools, processes and content.

Customer Experience and Transformation in Financial Services


In this series, we’ll apply an Enterprise Architecture lens to McKinsey’s ‘10 timeless tests’ from its ‘Banking on customer centricity’ white paper’ – a litmus test for an organisation’s customer experience qualities.

Kotter's eight-stage journey


A series of articles that looks at John Kotter's eight stages of change management, and explores his timeless blueprint for effective change leadership. These change management principles can gel with an enterprise architecture (EA) roadmap to achieve business transformation.

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    Johannesburg - 26 Jul 2017
  • EA Forum
    Cape Town - 27 Jul 2017
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    Durban - 17 Aug 2017
  • EA Forum
    Johannesburg - 30 Aug 2017