The structure and operation of an organization are described by its enterprise architecture. It is used for handling all the IT assets and resources within the company. This architecture gives a better understanding of the IT landscape. How a company uses its enterprise architecture determines its potential to meet targets in the future.
But, a proper framework is required for handling and designing the enterprise architecture (EA) of a company. This is where TOGAF comes in. It assists businesses to design and maintain their EA properly. Moreover, TOGAF training helps employees to design an IT strategy for their company.
In this article, we will learn about the basics of TOGAF and its importance in enterprise architecture.
What is Enterprise Architecture?
Before learning about TOGAF, we have to understand what enterprise architecture is all about. EA can be defined as a practice of designing, analyzing, planning, and implementing enterprise analysis. This helps companies execute their business strategies. EA assists companies to structure all their IT assets, policies, and projects to successfully achieve the desired business results.
A company’s business requirements guide its EA. EA lays out the technique of how technology, business, and information can work together. In this technology-driven age, EA is extremely important as businesses have to use and cope up with the latest technologies such as cloud computing, machine learning, data science, and IoT.
Every company has its unique EA, but still, there are some commonalities. The 4 important layers of enterprise architecture are –
Business architecture domain
This domain defines the organizational structure and its vision. The strategies and objectives that allow the business to deliver products and services are described by this domain. The people in the company who are executing business strategies are mentioned here.
Application architecture domain
This domain describes the different applications and their interactions within the company. The relationship between these applications and the core business processes is also defined in this domain. The domain also addresses how capabilities and services defined earlier are implemented.
Data architecture domain
The data architecture domain defines the structure of the logical and physical data assets of a company. The domain emphasizes the importance of data analytics for understanding customers. This knowledge gained from data analytics will help companies to improve their business strategies and processes.
Technology architecture domain
This defines the software and hardware needed for implementing application services within the organization. EA is important for IT management, system development, IT risk management, decision making, detecting security breaches, and possible system failures.The Main Benefits of Enterprise Architecture Are –
- The company can evaluate the existing IT infrastructure and how it can help them achieve their objectives
- Better collaboration between various business units and the IT infrastructure
- It gives a better view of the IT architecture and the business units outside it
- EA provides a benchmarking framework for comparing the current business standards against other companies
- Assists in cybersecurity and data protection
What is TOGAF?
TOGAF (The Open Group Architecture Framework) is a very popular enterprise architecture framework. It primarily helps companies manage and align their IT goals with their business goals. The framework was developed by The Open Group in 1995, and by 2016, most of the top fortune 500 companies were using it. Businesses can use TOGAF for free internally, but it is not free for commercial purposes.
TOGAF helps companies to define their requirements before starting a project. This systematic approach helps in maintaining timelines, reducing errors, and staying within the budget. Such a framework is essential when an organization plans to implement a major change.
The pillars of the TOGAF architecture help organizations use technology in a structured way so that it is always aligned to their business objectives. The main pillars of the TOGAF framework are –
Enterprise architecture domains
The complete architecture is divided into 4 sub-domains:
- Business architecture
- Application architecture
- Data architecture
- Technical architecture
Architecture Development Model (ADM)
This model makes use of performance engineering to create enterprise architecture. It can be customized as per the company’s requirements. After the development of the architecture, it can be provided to all the teams within the organization in iterative cycles. This reduces the chances of errors.
The ADM helps businesses to analyze their current status and compare it with their long-term goals.
This can be considered as a virtual repository of all the architectural assets such as architectural descriptions, models, and patterns. It also has options for classifying solutions and architectural artifacts.
Importance of TOGAF in Enterprise Architecture
In any organization, TOGAF handles all aspects of the enterprise architecture such as planning, designing, managing, and implementing the EA. TOGAF’s significance is highlighted in the points mentioned below –
TOGAF is an enterprise architecture framework that was developed with the collaboration of many expert professionals. It has gone through many revisions, updates, and modifications to stay at par with the current industry standards of EA. This makes it relevant and a key element for all companies all over the world.
Flexible in nature
TOGAF is highly flexible in nature and can be used along with other industry standards. Companies can retain their existing frameworks and implement TOGAF too. Other EA frameworks such as DODAF and FEA can be used with a tailored TOGAF version.
The ADM methodology of TOGAF consists of sub-processes such as Architecture Context, Transition Planning, Architecture Governance and Architecture Delivery. This iterative methodology has made TOGAF popular for enterprise architecture development.
Need for TOGAF training and certification
If you are an enterprise architect or want to get a job in that department, it is vital to know TOGAF as it is the world’s leading EA framework. Getting a certification will open many employment opportunities for you. As it is an industry-recognized certification, you can start applying in many organizations.
If you want to level up your career, getting a TOGAF certification will equip you with the managerial and technical aspects of enterprise architecture. The Open Group offers two certifications of TOGAF – Level 1 TOGAF Certification and Level 2 TOGAF Certification.
Enterprise architects certified in TOGAF earn an average salary of 50,000 to 2,50,000 per annum in India.
TOGAF has helped companies to enhance their businesses by reducing IT operation costs and development costs. Project management has been made easier. As more and more companies are adopting TOGAF, this is the best time to get TOGAF training for a bright career in enterprise architecture.