Enterprise Architecture Definition

Dragon1 Icon for Enterprise Architecture

Dragon1 Icon for Enterprise Architecture
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Dragon1 Definition for Enterprise Architecture: Enterprise Architecture is a total concept for an enterprise structure consisting of coherent constructive, operative and decorative concepts for areas such as governance, business, information and technology.

Enterprise Architecture Definition Summary

What does Enterprise Architecture mean?

We are used to talk about architecture when it comes to buildings and bridges. But when it comes to organizations such as government institutions and enterprises, architecture is a whole new thing. And Enterprise Architecture is or seems to be different from architecture. But is it? Or is it not?

Definition

Enterprise Architecture is a total concept for an enterprise structure consisting of coherent constructive, operative and decorative concepts for areas such as governance, business, information and technology.

In this sense Enterprise Architecture has a lot of similarities with building architecture as in the architecture (total concept) of a building (structure).

Symbol

The symbol for Architecture is an arch. The symbol for Enterprise Architecture is an enterprise with an arch.

Usage

Today organizations are more busy with Enterprise Architectures than ever. Because of new technologies, coming forth more rapidly, big data being on the doorsteps, and not one software supplier can do it all, every organization has to make his current (AS-IS) and target (TO-BE) Enterprise Architecture visible.

Misunderstandings about Enterprise Architecture

Enterprise Architecture is more than IT or business processes + software applications. Enterprise Architecture is the architecture of the whole of the enterprise.

Here is an article about Misunderstandings in Enterprise Architecture

Examples

The definition states that an architecture is a total concept, thus a set of coherent concepts. So if you would visualize the architecture of a structure, you would see concepts grouped together. Often divided into layers. An enterprise architecture often has layers like: governance, business, information (systems), application, data and technology or IT infrastructure.

An example Enterprise Architecture (in 2D) is presented here below. You see layers and on each layer you see concepts (the oval shapes are the icons for concepts).

enterprise architecture diagram

You can use this diagram to score the presence and maturity of concepts in your organizations. And very interesting is to see what the new unique concepts are in your organization, that put you in front of the competition.

The diagram below (a form of 3D) shows many generic concepts that are present in every organization and implemented at different levels of maturity (m).

enterprise architecture diagram

Use the two diagrams to match your situation with it.

More Examples of Enterprise Architecture are:

  • The company that is only present online. No employees. No offices.
  • e-government: the ability to do business with the government online and brick and mortar.
  • e-fulfillment: the ability to do every logistic action after a receiving an order smoothly and interchangeably online or physical.

Further reading

Are you interested in reading more about this?
Here we have a page about What is Enterprise Architecture

Our intention is not to provide a complete dictionary on Enterprise Architecture here, but to provide only the most frequent used words in the field.

If you have a suggestion for us to improve the list or a definition, please contact us via info@dragon1.com

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