FAQs

How do I request consulting?

Open a Service Request if you would like to discuss a consulting engagement with a CDT enterprise architect.

How Do I Explain EA?

Enterprise architecture is a professional practice of strategic business planning and design that often leverages technological elements to improve the business enterprise.

EA is a well-defined practice for conducting analysis, design, planning, and implementation, using a comprehensive approach, for the successful development and execution of strategy. Applying architectural principles to guide an organization through the business, information, process, and technology changes necessary to execute its strategy. Guidelines for applying these principles increase the consistency and quality of decision making.

Management Consultancy

Enterprise architecture helps define and shape business and operating models, identify risk and opportunities, and create roadmaps/plans for improvement. In practical terms, enterprise architecture should be perceived as management consulting. EA practices bring a discipline to building the business and helps consolidate processes and improve coordination. This discipline improves planning, design, and delivery when it is time to update or replace business processes and/or systems.

EA Practitioners

In practice, enterprise architects perform analysis on business and technical structures and processes and are often called upon to draw conclusions from the information collected to address the goals of the organization: effectiveness, efficiency, agility, and continuity of complex business operations.

Architects often model the current and future states of an enterprise and produce conceptual blueprints that define the structure and operation of the organization. Their intent is to determine ways the organization can effectively achieve its current objectives and plan for future operations.

EA Benefits

Having an enterprise architecture program benefits the modern organization in many ways. The profession helps deliver a holistic, outside-in, top-down view of the business, its structures, and systems. These things are necessary for pragmatic, effective management of the related complexities. Actionable architectural analysis and documentation as a direct input to executives, managers, and staff support portfolio planning, resource planning, decision-making, and managing for business outcomes. Key benefits are:

  • Managed complexity
  • Actionable work products
  • Increased agility
  • Delivering value quicker

CEAF Building Blocks

CEAF is the State of California’s government framework for the professional practice of enterprise architecture and the effective implementation of state EA programs. CEAF is comprised of four framework building blocks.

Each of the four building blocks is described on the Digest, Program, Portfolio, and Views pages.

What is California’s EA Capability Portfolio?

California’s enterprise architectural portfolio is organized by capabilities. Architectural capabilities include activities such as facilitating user-centered design workshops and modeling efforts, creating plans/roadmaps, or assessing vendor partner services and/or technologies.

Depending on what the architects are asked to engage – Business and IT Strategy, Planning and Roadmapping, or Governance – the framework provides a portfolio of guides and tools to support the work efforts.

Services and activities are outlined listed below.

California Statewide Enterprise Architecture Capabilities

Community

  • Collaboration
  • Education
  • Innovation

Business Strategy

  • Coordinate Business
  • Business Transformation
  • Digital Business Modeling
  • Customer Experience Lens to IT
  • Digital Opportunity Demonstration
  • Digital Strategy Facilitation

IT Strategy

  • Support IT Strategic Plan
  • Steward Information Architecture
  • Assess Vendors/Partners
  • Accelerate Agile Technologies
  • Assess IT Talent
  • Support IT Workforce Plan

Planning and Roadmapping

  • Develop Future State IT Architecture
  • Support IT Portfolio Modernization
  • Set Technology Standards
  • Create and Maintain Roadmaps
  • Assess Current State IT Environment
  • Assess Maturity

Governance

  • Review Design Solutions
  • Facilitate Integration
  • Promote Standards Adherence
  • Support Project Delivery
  • Provide Solution Design Consultation
  • Create and Manage Reference Architecture
What is California’s EA Capability Portfolio?

 

California’s statewide architectural services and activities are organized within EA capabilities.  EA capabilities include activities such as facilitating user-centered design workshops and modeling efforts, creating roadmaps, or assessing vendor partner technologies and services.

Depending on the capability for which architects are asked to engage – Business and IT Strategy, Planning and Roadmapping, or Governance – the portfolio provides guides and tools to support their work efforts.

California’s statewide architecture services and activities are organized within a set of standard EA capabilities listed below.

California Statewide Enterprise Architecture Capabilities

Community

  • Collaboration
  • Education
  • Innovation

Business Strategy

  • Coordinate Business
  • Business Transformation
  • Digital Business Modeling
  • Customer Experience Lens to IT
  • Digital Opportunity Demonstration
  • Digital Strategy Facilitation

IT Strategy

  • Support IT Strategic Plan
  • Steward Information Architecture
  • Assess Vendors/Partners
  • Accelerate Agile Technologies
  • Assess IT Talent
  • Support IT Workforce Plan

Planning and Roadmapping

  • Develop Future State IT Architecture
  • Support IT Portfolio Modernization
  • Set Technology Standards
  • Create and Maintain Roadmaps
  • Assess Current State IT Environment
  • Assess Maturity

Governance

  • Review Solution Designs
  • Facilitate Integration
  • Promote Standards Adherence
  • Support Project Delivery
  • Provide Solution Design Consultation
  • Create and Manage Reference Architecture
What is an Enterprise?

A group of people organized to deliver products, employing technology

What is the purpose of Enterprise Architecture?

The purpose of having an enterprise architecture program is to deliver a “blueprint” that can be used by a wide variety the organization stakeholders. Interests of different stakeholders are different, and the “blueprint” needs to visually speak to those interests individually.

For instance, HR associates’ people, skills, and remuneration to business functions and operational roles. Finance people document the budget and cost flows. And, of course, Information Technology people are all about technology and its deployment. All these views would be linked and navigable in the architectural blueprint.

Overall, architectural services enable enterprise simplification, integration, operational improvement, resource savings, asset management, agility, and planning/road mapping. Superior management of the ever-growing complexity of the operation and its resources is a win:win.

Who does Enterprise Architecture?

Enterprise architects, of course. However, many of the portfolio of services, and the accompanying “tools” can be put to use by a variety of other disciplines. Ideally, the enterprise architect will introduce the framework, coordinate, and organize the analysis/design work, and help make sure the stakeholders’ parts fit into the whole. Each discipline can model their view of people, processes, and systems from their perspective. Ultimately, when combined these views produce a coherent architectural “blueprint”. Of course, this is a collective modeling and implementation effort. When these practices mature and become commonplace, the enterprise architecture program becomes a readily available source of Enterprise Knowledge. This alone further promotes the speed, quality, and business value of professional architectural service.

What should Enterprise Architecture do?

Enterprise architecture, as a program within an organization, should help coordinate the many and often fragmented internal business efforts. As technology becomes more readily accessible to business and the related technological disruptions become wider spread, the enterprise architect can be of enormous value. We have all heard of organizations simultaneously, and often unknowingly, tackling things like “cloud services”, IT Architecture, Application Integration, and ITIL efforts as independent activities. It is not uncommon to find only superficial reference to organizational alignment, business strategy, or compliance with regulations. Unfortunately, and regardless of business process management, Six/Lean Sigma, Business Performance Management certificates exist, these efforts have an extremely high probability of producing more of the same business fragmentation. Business executives should engage enterprise architectural services. These services can provide business transformation and technology modernization consulting, and oversight services that help deliver complementary and coordinated business services.

Why an EA framework?

Because an enterprise architecture framework provides a structure that integrates how to create and use architectural principles and practices. These principles and practices are used to create and use architectural description, or blueprint, of a system. Enterprise architecture is focused on business systems – things composed of people, strategies, processes, goals, initiatives, etc. as well as a variety of technologies. The California Enterprise Architecture Framework helps structure the architects’ thinking by dividing the design into views that help produce models for understanding the “enterprise”. Each view represents a different discipline’s perspective of a particular challenge. Together, these views produce a coherent architectural “blueprint” of the whole. And this blueprint allows for making systemic business design decisions on all the components of the system as well as long-term decisions around new design requirements, sustainability, and support.