In my previous post I tried to explain what enterprise architecture is. In this post Ill try to explain why enterprise needs enterprise architecture at all.
Today enterprises are facing many challenges such as compliance to regulations, improving the enterprise competitive position by enabling business and IT agility, managing of enterprise portfolio and turning CEO vision into enterprise reality. If well try to figure out what is the main obstacle which prevents enterprises from reaching those challenges, I think that we can all agree on complexity. There are many obstacles, but when you try to find out what is the common root youll end up with complexity.
So, if well able to reduce complexity as much as we can, well be able to achieve more and more of mentioned challenges. Complexity can be reduced by using architecture, or in other words by mapping all the building blocks that compose the complexity, and their relations. To manage the complexity of enterprises its not enough to do just Systems and Infrastructure architecture. We need a holistic view of the enterprise, which eventually ends up with architecture of the Business, Information, Systems and Infrastructure domains. Or simply, Just enterprise architecture will let to manage the complexity and to achieve the mentioned challenges.
One of the good analogies to enterprise architecture is city planning. As enterprises cities are also complex, and in order to manage their complexity theres a need to encapsulate different architectures into a one holistic architecture, which encapsulate all of the composed architectures building blocks and their relations. In order to get a holistic view of the city we need architecture of electricity, usage of land (public, private and industrial zones), electricity, sewageand many other architecture types. (As illustrate in the following figure)
Enterprise architecture therefore is a solution to reduce complexity and achieve the enterprises challenges as we know them today. My next post will be dedicated to what is an enterprise architecture framework and the reasons to use one.