Enterprise Architecture – More Than Just Standards



David Rudawitz



February 2004



A far too common belief is that a set of standards for hardware and applications is an organization’s enterprise architecture.  Although it is true that hardware and application standards are included, they are only a small component of a comprehensive enterprise architecture.  An Enterprise Architecture is the description and design of a portfolio of processes, applications, information and their supporting technologies that enable business strategy.  It addresses the structure of that portfolio over time (current, tactical, strategic) and its interactions and linkages through guidelines including principles, rules, patterns, reference models, standards, initiatives, governance structures and processes to use when building new IT capability.  To be truly effective, organizations have to really understand and embrace the holistic concept of enterprise architecture.  Focusing solely on just the standards aspect greatly limits the benefits that an enterprise can achieve.