Over the last few decades, 'Enterprise Architecture (EA)' has become synonymous with corporate cohesion and efficiency. Any organization that operates without a clear idea of what it has to work with and how it will achieve crucial goals will inevitably waste time and money. It pays to have absolute clarity about what you are doing. EA practices will ensure that you have all the information you need to make critical decisions.
The downside of this is that even the latest versions of EA frameworks like TOGAF can be somewhat impenetrable to unfamiliar audiences. Understanding architecture domains and concepts can be challenging without the correct training, but expecting all major decision-makers to study EA will almost always be unfeasible. Because of this, businesses that are late to EA may feel justifiably apprehensive about adopting it. After all, how can a tool save time if it only causes confusion?
ArchiMate is an enterprise architecture tool/ modeling language owned by The Open Group, the creator of TOGAF. It aims to solve the lack of understanding between EA practitioners and their audiences by providing a ‘modeling language’ for mapping out the structures of corporate architectures.
ArchiMate 3.0 models enable practitioners to convey simplified versions of the structure of, and connections between, the various aspects of an organization. This allows decision-makers to glean not only the precise resources and capabilities they have at hand, but also what kind of impacts their decisions may have.
Since its initial release, ArchiMate has been continually refined and improved by some of the world’s leading experts in enterprise architecture. Released in June 2016, ArchiMate version 3.0 came with a number of updates from the previous version. This included a greater focus on physical elements of IT, enhanced usability, and improved consistency in terms of language and structure. It also added new layers to enhance the language, making it better-suited to modern organizations.
ArchiMate can be used to outline the concepts and relationships that govern modern businesses. This makes ArchiMate practitioners highly sought after across multiple industries. ArchiMate 3.0 can even be integrated with other frameworks and methodologies, such as TOGAF and BPMN, making it relatively painless to adopt.
So, how exactly does ArchiMate work, and what does it really mean for companies and professionals practicing enterprise architecture?
How Exactly Does ArchiMate Work?
ArchiMate is a graphical language: a series of visual practices that help organizations to make graphical representations of their operations. In other words, it’s a set of instructions on how to create a straightforward map of your business.
The ArchiMate language provides a clear terminology, designed to make the process of creating these maps as unambiguous as possible. The end results can give any organization a much clearer perspective of the architecture that they have to work with. It can also enable them to communicate the consequences of decisions and make the best choices possible going forwards.
Imagine a Sudoku puzzle, where each action in a column also affects a row. In much the same way, the core framework of ArchiMate is based on intersecting ‘layers’ and ‘aspects’ that form interconnecting cells.
Each layer takes multiple aspects into account, including Passive Structure, Behaviour, Active Structure, and Motivation. The layers are:
Implementation & Migration Layer
Any given stakeholder’s relative position within this matrix can determine what their main resources and concerns are. This kind of perspective is essential for enterprise architects. It can fuel the pursuit of wider business goals in ways that meet the needs of multiple departments.
The transparency offered by ArchiMate has made it a popular tool for stakeholders to design, assess, and communicate:
ArchiMate, like other products offered by The Open Group, has been refined and adapted over time in order to suit the changing requirements of its users. The current version, ArchiMate 3.0, boasts updated language and strategic elements which accommodate:
New business domains, such as logistics and manufacturing
New innovations mixing IT with the physical world
Increased demand for mixing business strategies with IT operations
Changes to The Open Group standards (most notably TOGAF)
Importantly, ArchiMate also provides a body of knowledge that can support those who are interested in pursuing enterprise architecture. This can make ArchiMate a valuable career stepping stone.
How can an ArchiMate Qualification Help my Business?
The essence of ArchiMate is clarity, and this is where most of the potential benefits lie.
Because stakeholder concerns can be illustrated so clearly in an ArchiMate model, the framework can allow organizations to make decisions with a much more accurate sense of perspective.
Identifying the connections between departments and decision-makers can help enterprise architects to see where relationships can be refined. This, in turn, can allow them to make the overall operation much more efficient.
With a clear enterprise model, an organization can easily show stakeholders how their concerns and requirements are being addressed.
ArchiMate is vendor-independent. This prevents users from becoming locked into stifling tools or frameworks, while also allowing them to incorporate future developments such as emerging computer technology or architectural practices.
The Open Group ArchiMate Forum can provide ongoing support for users. This can be a great source of inspiration and information for ArchiMate practitioners.
Why Pursue your ArchiMate Certification with Good e-Learning?
At Good e-Learning, our ArchiMate courses are each developed and updated by enterprise architecture specialists. Even better, each of our ArchiMate courses is accredited by The Open Group, the very organization behind ArchiMate and TOGAF.
Our team is more than capable of recommending the best courses to suit your schedule and skill set. Whether you are a budding enterprise architect or an experienced professional, our content can help you gain an industry-recognized qualification that can both benefit your company and help you boost your career.
Good e-Learning currently offers two Archimate packages:
The TOGAF 9 Certified & ArchiMate 3 Practitioner package combines TOGAF with ArchiMate. This equips students with knowledge of both one of the world’s leading enterprise architecture frameworks and a perfectly matching graphical language
Key features of our ArchiMate Certification course:
Corporate customers can even enjoy bespoke e-learning packages built to suit their employees specifically. Does your workforce need immediate access to e-learning content which reflects their unique requirements and preferred learning styles? Good e-Learning can deliver the best content to suit you!