The Requirements for Enterprise Architecture Integration

Enterprise Architecture does not only provide a structure as to how organizations should work, but it also paves the way for the integration of the different perspectives in obtaining business goals and objectives. The four perspectives of Enterprise Architecture are the following:

(a) Business perspective – describes how the business works such as business processes, organization cycles, suppliers of hardware tools and software programs, operating model, strategy maps and goals, and corporate policies;

(b) Application perspective – defines the organization s application portfolio such as automated services and interactions, interfaces between applications (e.g. data flows and events), Internet, eCommerce, Intranet and EDI links with parties or groups that are within or even outside the enterprise;

(c) Information perspective – illustrates what the organization needs to know to run its business operations and processes such as documents, databases, metadata, and data models (e.g. conceptual, contextual, physical, logical);

(d) Technology perspective – lays out the hardware devices and software applications that support the entire organization such as computer and its operating system, local and wide area networks, hosting servers and infrastructure software (e.g. application servers etc.)

These perspectives should be present at all times on any business process as these are related explicitly in achieving organizational goals and objectives. To draw a clear picture on what needs to be done on every business planning and decision making process, it would be best to document the current state of components listed above against the desired future state. Necessary upgrades and replacements should also be considered to address the ever changing regulatory requirements and business initiatives.