Volume 5

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Trends in Enterprise Architecture: Virtualization, Visualization, Service-Orientation, and Personal Architectures

Enterprise Architecture has been identified as one of the core solutions for enterprise success. The essence of Enterprise Architecture is to document the current and future states of an enterprise and to institute a reasonable transition process from current to future state so that any enterprise can sustain in vibrant environment. Varied nature of human thinking process and cultures has created and is creating new types of enterprise structures that need to function with least entropy and thus achieving its goals through strategic management of its resources. This has lead to creation of various tailor made Enterprise Architecture frameworks to cater to various enterprise models and varying needs of strategic information resource management. The current state of enterprise development and success points to current and future trends such as virtualization, visualization, service-orientation and personal enterprise architectures.

Enablers and Challenges in Using Enterprise Architecture Concepts to Drive Transformation: Perspectives from Private Organizations and Federal Government Agencies

Federal Agencies and Private companies have many strategic initiatives they pursue in order to realize their visions. Due to the complexity of these initiatives, there is a growing need for research on how enterprise architects and leaders should go about leading modernization and transformational programs while executing strategic initiatives. Enterprise Architecture (EA) provides a foundation for high-performing organizations in driving transformation. However, little is said in the literature about how to do this. This article primarily examines the use of enterprise architecture concepts in transformational initiatives and captured the top key enablers, and challenges identified by transformational teams in both the private and federal government sectors by conducting a combination of interviews, surveys and review of documentation. Analysis of empirical data identified key enablers and challenges organizations face when using EA concepts in transformation. These are further classified under three categories: communications, process, and management support and structure. Based on the outcome, we provide a list of suggestions to consider before undertaking transformational initiatives using enterprise architecture. Finally, we conclude with a discussion of similarities and differences in enablers and challenges between federal government and private sectors which provide additional insight for transformational teams.

The Importance of Formal Documentation In Enterprise Architectures

While Enterprise Architecture (EA) continues to move forward in its recognition as a meta-approach to understanding and documenting enterprises of various types in all dimensions (strategic, business, and technology). This article discusses the elements of a complete approach to EA, focusing on the documentation element. Examples of EA documentation from the EA3 ‘Cube’ approach are presented to show how various types of models and other artifacts are needed to fully cover the associated EA framework. Two new types of composite artifacts are also introduced – the ‘storyboard’ that shows all aspects of a service or process, and a ‘horse blanket’ that holistically depicts an enterprise-wide architecture. The article concludes with a call for more standards for EA documentation and more advanced types of EA models.

Enterprise Architecture for a Community Education Center

The Community Education Center (CEC) is located in Chicago, Illinois and is a non-profit organization that is dedicated to delivering secondary-education to at-risk students, as well as promoting adult literacy and community development. CEC’s management embarked on an Enterprise Architecture (EA) program as a tool to implement the goals and objectives of their strategic plan; to significantly enhance their service-delivery capability through improved integration and communication between their lines of business, and to improve and stabilize their sources of funding. CEC selected the EA3 “Cube” Framework because of its’ focus on linking client-focused services to an organization’s strategic business plan, and organizing both the in-house and outsourced IT investments to directly support business capability delivery.