This web site is a development site of the Light Enterprise Architecture in search of what is Enterprise Architecture and how to make it practical. Instead of the traditional web publish effort, the author develop the Light EA approach continuously in this EA play ground since 2004. After a decade of try and error, it is taking shape.
ARCHITECT THE ENTERPRISE FROM THE ASPECT OF TECHNOLOGY, BUSINESS AND CULTURE
Enterprise Architecture, although initiated in information age, is not all about Information technology. EA, which integrate engineering and holistic philosophy to know the parts and see the whole, will be a powerful tool for business to win the competitive edge. Enterprise Culture, which is considered as the fields of enterprise, is essential for the organic enterprise. LEA apply the atomistic and holistic architecture approach to architect the Enterprise from the aspect of:
- Business EA,
- and Culture EA.
This website address the following sections
- What is EA?
- Define the EA deliverable
- Enterprise Map to visualize EA.
- The Adaptive IT EA approach
- The Business EA (The real EA)
- Architect enterprise culture based on social field theory
As shown in the following figure.
The following paragraphs elaborate each section.
SECTION ONE: What is Enterprise Architecture ?
The question of “What is EA? ” is difficult to answer even among the EA community because the word of “Enterprise” is ambiguous. From dictionary definition, it is better know as business related. Therefore EA is frequently define as to architect the enterprise in a system architecture approach.
It is essential to define “Enterprise” before address the question. Under the context of “Enterprise Architecture”, “Enterprise” really means “holistic” rather than “business”, and it can be explained form philosophic, logical and physical aspects as shown in the following figure. Philosophically Enterprise is the Whole under Macrocosm and Microcosm, logically , it is the organizations large or small; Physically, it can be the government departments , agencies, divisions. Or it is the corporation, companies and subdivision. Some EA expert suggest to change Enterprise Architecture to Organizational Architecture for practical purpose.
EA is a holistic architecture approach to see the whole and know the parts
EA should not be as complicate a described by many EA experts, it can be simply as a holistic architecture approach in contrast to the stovepipe architecture. It was initiated to overcome the challenge of redundant effort in stovepipe culture. Form the context of Enterprise Architecture, “Enterprise” means to see the whole, “Architecture” is the orderly arrangement of parts. It is a methodology rather than the blueprint of an enterprise. In addition to overcome the challenge of stovepipe, the holistic architecture approach also enable the readers to see the whole and know the parts which integrate the power of left/right brain. The holistic architecture approach is not all about Information technology. It can be used to overcome the challenge of redundant effort in every aspect of business.
Zachman Framework as a holistic thinking tool
The concept of EA as a holistic architecture approach is further supported by the Zachman framework which is considered as the EA framework. In stovepipe architecture approach, the IT community have focused on business process and develop automation only from a specific view. Zachman framework in a holistic approach, consider a system holistically from the attributes of why, what, how, who, where and when and from the role of planner, owner, designer and contractor. This framework relatively holistic compare to the stovepipe architecture approach but it is mechanical holistic rather the organically holistic.
SECTION TWO: The EA deliverable
LEA adapt the traditional architecture drawing which have served as the most efficient architecture information container to communicate with stake holders as shown in the following picture.
SECTION THREE: Enterprise Map
EA is an emerging paradigm, the key is “Enterprise” rather than “Architecture”, however, most of Enterprise Architecture methods such as EAP, FEA, TOGAF, DODAF have focused on the “Architecture” with minimum emphasis of “Enterprise” . As a result, EA has become nothing new but large scale solution architecture . LEA have developed the Enterprise Map to visualize the invisible Enterprise as show in the following figure. Enterprise map serve the following value.
- To visualize the stealth Enterprise Architecture.
- Enable common people to see the whole.
- The whole is much greater than the sum of its parts.
- Enterprise map is a tool for Orientation,
- Enterprise Map as a mnemonic device
- See the whole to facilitate enterprise collaboration culture
SECTION FOUR: The Adaptive IT EA approach (LEAF)
Enterprise is organic which change constantly, The Light Enterprise Architecture Framework (LEAF) is a 3×3 adaptive EA approach as shown in the following figure. The adaptive architecture method incorporate iterative design direction and practice EA in a three tier approach to adapt change.
Design EA in three direction Enterprise Architecture recognize different architecture design direction for alignment, agility and adapting to change. Solution architect mainly focused on aligning to business. Enterprise architect does not only concern about alignment but also reuse and adapting to change. Adopting to change is an integral part of enterprise architecture.
- Vertical Architecture : Align business and technologies in vertical direction.
- Horizontal Direction : Network engineering, SOA and cloud computing is an horizontal architecture approach. with cross-cut architecture approach in horizontal direction. Network engineers can fully appreciate the OSI reference model which have been the foundation of network engineering. However, it is have been a struggle for application development engineer to appreciate the use of reference model because it is not necessary to learn experience of the others in the stovepipe culture. As a result, EA is running the risk to become a larger stove pipe.
- Circular Architecture : EA adopt to change iteratively in circular architecture direction. EA is not only about alignment and agility, it is also consider performance gap analysis, risk management, strategic plan. capital investment, change management, project management and configuration management as an integral part of enterprise architecture.
Practice EA in three tiers . Instead of a big bang approach to design the enterprise blueprint in a command and control approach which requires significant investment of effort of time and resources. the 3×3 matrix suggest that EA is a three tier approach.
- The initial EA is notional and tangible to visualize the enterprise with Enterprise Map and align business and technologies via the Notional Architecture at the high level. It does not take significant time and resource.
- The second tier is the Practical EA which is the EA on demand to close the business performance gap based on Segment Architecture approach.
- The third tier suggest the EA is a daily business and EA professional are the “Glue” not the “Guru”. Instead of serve as the ”Guru” to provide guidance in a command and Control manner, Enterprise Architects are the “Glue” to enable enterprise agility by coordinate reuse, sharing.
SECTION FIVE : An EA model to architect Enterprise
LEA proposes an EA model to architect the enterprise as shown in the following figure. The pyramid alignment model, follows the suit [not sure what you mean here - suit is not the right word] of the original EA model, and is more appropriate to architect the Enterprise.
- an organization has to know who are its potential customers, their needs and the demand they could generate (first layer);
- the services it offers to its potential customers, managed in a service catalog to allow customers to understand the offerings from the enterprise (second layer);
- the enterprise business capabilities required to deliver the service offerings; this should be represented in a model which clearly distinguishes business capability and business activities. Enterprise Architects define the enterprise based on business capabilities instead of business activities (third layer).
- the business activities as the means to support customer needs, service offerings and business capabilities. Business operations consist of activity modeling, function analysis and business processes (fourth layer).
- the enterprise resources of human, finance and technology to support the enterprise operation. This model shows that IT EA is only a part of the enterprise rather than the whole enterprise. There are also human resources EA and financial EA (fifth layer).
SECTION SIX : Architect the Enterprise Collaborative culture
- Knowledge Sharing