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How to Start with Enterprise Architecture

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You have assembled your Enterprise Architecture team. So now what? How do you start with Enterprise Architecture? We have compiled these three important things you should focus on in the beginning.

 

UNDERSTAND THE FOCUS OF YOUR STAKEHOLDERS

What do your stakeholders expect from you? What are their targets? What are their pain points? Is it clear what they want from you, and can you deliver that?

Before doing anything else, you should brainstorm with key stakeholders and take as long as you need to until you reach a mutual agreement and understanding. Do not leave the meeting until expectations are set, so that the results you deliver later will meet their needs. Do not start architecting just for the sake of architecting.

The quality of your data should be your highest priority.

 

COLLECT ONLY ESSENTIAL DATA

When you start to collect data for your portfolio, the most important thing you need to figure out is where your stakeholders' key focus is. Only after understanding that will you know what information you need to bring in and where to put your architectural focus.

(Looking for a single source of truth for your data? Try Designer.)

As for the data itself, collect only enough data to help answer the stakeholder's question at hand. That should be your primary focus and target. If the data you have is not directly linked to the key value that you are bringing to your stakeholder, do NOT put it in. You can learn more about collecting the right data here.

When putting data into your portfolio, if you're not sure whether it is relevant or not, asking the following will help you decide:
  • What question do I need to answer?
  • What kind of information do I need to answer that question?
  • How will this data be kept current and accurate?

 

EXPAND PORTFOLIO WITH ONLY RELEVANT DATA

Your EA Portfolio is not a data dump. Enterprise Architecture is a journey on which you slowly mature on the way. Make sure to only add relevant data.

The data you have in your portfolio should be able to meet the following 2 criteria:
  1. The data is complete.
  2. The data is current.

Expanding your portfolio should have natural progress over time and be populated with new data as you answer more and more questions for the business stakeholders. Enterprise Architecture is not a sprint.

 

WHAT’S NEXT?

Want to learn more on the topic? Watch our webinar on Enterprise Architecture 101 now:

enterprise architecture 101

 


 

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