ESTABLISHING AN ARCHITECTURE BASELINE

Why

This service provides the organization an initial Enterprise Architecture (EA) Baseline. An architecture baseline is the “as is” or “current” architecture. The architecture baseline includes architecture assets from all architecture domains.

Typical architecture assets include:

  • Business policies, business practices, and business processes
  • Applications, interfaces & relationship to business processes
  • Data concepts/entities and relationship to applications
  • Technologies and relationship to applications

All formal EA methodologies have as a best practice:

  • Establishing a Baseline Architecture
  • Establishing a Target Architecture
  • Performing a Gap Analysis
  • Developing an Architecture Roadmap
  • Developing a Migration Plan

 

Without an Enterprise Architecture Baseline:

  • Organizations don’t have visibility into the multiple vendor solutions that perform the same role in their enterprise. They are losing opportunities to consolidate technologies and save money.
  • Organizations assume a high risk when making changes without understanding the existing environment.
  • Organizations must guess at the cost and effort to transition to the target architecture.
  • EA programs are challenged to interact with stakeholders across the organizations if they don’t understand their current environment.

How

Customer Responsibilities

Customers must provide the raw baseline data. This is typically collected in 2 methods:

  1. Provide Existing Documents & Files. The customer collects the raw baseline data (e.g. key procurement documents (e.g. if they created one to replace major systems there is usually a description of their current environment), software asset management reports, current application lists used by development managers). For custom applications a brief description should be provided that includes the application’s purpose. More data is better. Requirements documents or system design documents for key systems are great resources.
  2. Use Baseline Capture Templates. Web Age Solutions can provide baseline capture templates for the organization to use and customize if they desire. The organization provides the templates to key stakeholders to complete for each application. This is the preferred method, but not always feasible. They should also give us their software asset discovery/management report.

Web Age Solutions (WAS) Responsibilities

  1. WAS extracts architecture assets and their descriptions from the material provided.
  2. An architecture classification taxonomy is selected. WAS has one available if the client doesn’t have a preference.
  3. The architecture assets are classified using the selected classification taxonomy.
  4. The information is loaded into a Microsoft Access to do the work remotely. If organization can provide WAS with access to their environment remotely, WAS can use their repository. If WAS gets access to their system remotely and the organization is comfortable with SharePoint, a SharePoint site can be created.

Joint Responsibilities

WAS staff will be on-site for 2 days to load the information into their chosen repository, reviewing the baseline reports with them, making any last minute adjustments, and discussing observations and recommendations.

There will always be a list of open items – Items that the name was ambiguous (e.g. multiple vendors have products of the same name). Repository quality assurance (QA) reports easily identify these open items (e.g. applications with no owning organization identified).

What

This service will provide:

  • An initial EA Baseline database installed at the client’s site in a repository of their choosing.
  • A data model/schema that documents how the data is organized.
  • A set of EA Baseline reports that enable organizations to leverage their baseline. Samples include: Application Portfolio; Application Interfaces; Application to Technology; and Where Technology Used.