1 Proven Strategy to Adopt an Enterprise Architecture Framework

January 3, 2011

Most EA frameworks are long, drawn-out gorillas of text (see TOGAF’s 800+ pages). How does one get started to actually show tangible results?

The traditional top-down approach of researching many EA frameworks, comparing and contrasting, deciding what framework and what parts of the framework makes the most sense, modifying the framework to work for the organization, modifying processes, and creating a quick-start can often be a multi-year endeavor.

An alternative approach: Identify a problem. Bring in just that part of the framework that is needed to solve the problem. Repeat.

An example: In my experience at large companies, goals between departments are often misaligned. Sometimes it is difficult to ensure all projects have clear traceability to departmental and corporate-wide goals. One senior leader simply asked me: “how can I get my peers to think about goals together as one?” Problem identified! Now solve the problem with only that part of the EA framework that makes sense. In this case, the Business Motivation Model (BMM) and specifically the “Goals” and “Objectives” is one solution (thumbnail link below). Then simply create the model, present it, and mention that it is based on the industry best practice ABC framework! Using this process, Enterprise frameworks can be successfully and iteratively introduced to your company.