Creating an Enterprise Architecture Topology

Enterprise architecture (EA) within the Cloud Adoption Framework can be developed, maintained, and implemented in different ways and follow different methodologies. During planning and implementation of the framework, we recommend that you address the following EA perspectives:

  • IT first: Identify the IT systems available in your organization and how they might provide new business opportunities.

  • Business first: Determine how IT systems should be managed and designed to meet your business goals. The business first approach the following subcategories:

    • Business process-centric

    • Governance-centric

The following table summarizes key differences between the perspectives.

IT-Centric Business Process-Centric Governance-Centric
Objective To align business with IT To improve and manage business process To better understand and govern business
What it provides Understanding of IT and the interactions with an organization's business models Understanding of an organization's business processes Analysis of EA domains from different perspectives
What it focuses on IT systems and architecture Business processes

Communication between business and IT

Collaboration among all divisions and cloud center of excellence (CCOE)

Who triggers it IT manager and senior IT stakeholder Business manager All enterprise managers
Who are the users IT department Business department All departments

IT-Centric Enterprise Architecture

One of the main goals of an IT-centric EA is consolidation so that business can align more easily with IT. An EA framework supports alignment by providing more efficient and structured IT coordination.

Use an IT-centric EA to understand your IT resources, various models, and how they interact. This approach focuses on IT systems and architectures, with business defining the IT demand.

IT becomes involved when a new technology is identified that can enable new business processes. Align your IT architectures with business processes. For potential communication issues between the business and IT, provide resolutions when the cloud center of excellence (CCOE) defines the RACI matrix.

IT-centric EA is generally activated by IT managers and senior IT stakeholders. When defining EA, the CCOE and business owners must develop architectures, processes, and relationships. The result is a better understanding of which parts of the business and processes stimulate IT, and how IT affects the business.

For more information, see Business Process Trends: Enterprise Architecture in the Context of Organizational Strategy.

Business Process-Centric Enterprise Architecture

One of the main goals of a business process-centric EA is to improve and manage business processes so that each objective is clearly aligned with your internal operations and projects. Business process-centric EA optimizes processes first, and then assigns IT systems.

Because this approach is centered on business processes and their management, you can focus on customers and relevant markets. Business processes are also improved and adapted to provide additional value for customers. This process works as a flywheel as your organization continually evolves business processes based on how markets and customers react during assessment of the benefits.

Governance-Centric Enterprise Architecture

One of the main goals of governance-centric EA is to fully understand your business. Without the ability to understand your business, it can be difficult to improve the governance of your business. Using this approach, you must break down your organization's business model, evaluate the performance of various divisions, and use benchmarks for measuring progress.

This approach can seem bureaucratic. To counter this, demonstrate that the data obtained is clear, value propositions are declared, and you are aligned with business transformation investments and objectives. This accomplishment means that your organization can be confident enough in the accuracy of data to make the correct business decisions.