How to get the most out of TOGAF and your enterprise architecture initiatives
Organizations that are at the beginning of their enterprise architecture (EA) journey often lack a frame of reference. As the most universally accepted and recognized EA framework, TOGAF is the natural place to begin. While adoption alone isn’t always a solid indicator of the usefulness of a tool, TOGAF has a number of characteristics (beyond just being the one that everyone else uses) that make it the de facto leading framework.
Originally designed in 1995, TOGAF has been collaboratively developed by leading organizations across the globe to deliver sustainable enterprise architecture. It provides a framework for processes, documentation and analysis. And while ubiquity is not the be all and end all, the level of support is very high and its body of knowledge is freely available on the Open Group website.
However, a lot of individuals and organizations are put off TOGAF as it comes across heavily theoretical and complicated to implement. Understanding key concepts and breaking down TOGAF into easily digestible and practical formats is essential to realizing tangible benefits from an effective enterprise architecture.
It is through understanding the purpose of enterprise architecture initiatives, that the benefits of TOGAF become apparent. Enterprise architecture outlines the business as it currently exists and where it would like to be – a process which involves modelling, analytics, report generation and an array of interrelated projects.
Establishing both current and target states, EA requires the incorporation of all the details and moving parts of the enterprise to be stored in a holistic fashion, as it is only by standardizing and documenting everything that it becomes possible to generate meaningful analytics and tangible insight to drive the business forward. As such, enterprise architects must find a way to cut through enterprise complexity.
TOGAF immediately ensures a leading industry standard is adhered to and that everyone across the business is on the same page. It fosters a scalable collaborative culture, making it easier to plan, strategize and execute. Moreover, it is subject to constant support and regular updates. Thus, it is futureproofed and adaptable to your business needs.
TOGAF makes it easier to identify and plan change through its architectural development method, aligning the business and IT. At the same time, applying the capability based planning will enhance agility, improve business efficiency and facilitate enterprise-wide transformation.
Having a flexible, yet robust, framework in place helps break down silos, ensures everyone is working towards the same goals and that the business is fast and responsive. Clear, straightforward methodologies mean the onboarding of new technologies, processes and people is seamless. It puts a structure in place to preventing stakeholders from having to reinvent the wheel whenever a change is made, mitigating the complexity, cost, risk and time of EA initiatives.
TOGAF implementation can be greatly enhanced with the correct tooling, and iServer has been built to harness it, providing key functionality including support for the architecture development method, metamodels, modelling notation and out-of-the-box templates. Benefits include:
Alignment to industry standards: The flexibility to easily define and adapt the metamodel content, object types, and notations, to suit your organization’s specific requirements
Increased collaboration and consistency: Models can be stored in the central repository, reused, updated, and maintained with added versioning controls
Time and cost reduction: Existing enterprise information created in Microsoft environment can be imported into the repository and utilized for further architecture development
Informed decision-making: Heatmaps and impact analysis tools, improves the ability to analyze dependencies across multiple layers and architectural domains
iServer can both simplify TOGAF and enhance its capabilities as you drive enterprise architecture throughout your business. Find out how to navigate enterprise complexity and deliver value to a wider audience with a ‘how to’ guide to TOGAF. You can also book a demo to find out how correct tooling will leverage your organization’s EA practice.