TOGAF, ‘The Open Group Architecture Framework’, is a massive name in the world of enterprise architecture (EA). Virtually all professional enterprise architects have at least some knowledge of the framework. After all, having been around for over two decades, it has had a part in developing key architectures for many of the most successful organizations on the planet.
The framework provides users with the guidance required to develop high-level enterprise architectures. These architectures can then grant a degree of perspective that helps stakeholders to both maximize the efficiency of critical processes and create comprehensive, risk-aware strategies for organizational development.
However, while the TOGAF Architecture Development Method (ADM) is generic enough to be used by organizations of virtually any size, industry or location, there is still more depth to EA than it lets on.
TOGAF Business Architecture (BA) is a relatively new qualification that dives into the realm of ‘business architecture’. This is actually Phase B of the TOGAF ADM, and also plays an integral part in architectural work in other domains.
The role of a 'business architect' is to design, build and maintain architectures that demonstrate how different sections of a business interact. They then use this top-level awareness to improve individual processes in order to maximize the value delivered to clients. It is a strategic role that works at an enterprise level, covering an organization’s strategy, structure, roles, capabilities, processes, information, data and so on.
As is the case with enterprise architecture, business architecture requires strong analytical capabilities. Organizations must know how to place and analyze skills within a business environment in order to better align them with high-level goals. Despite being a specialization, it serves as a key part of the foundation for success throughout the enterprise architecture development process. As TOGAF Phase B says: "A knowledge of the Business Architecture is a prerequisite for architecture work in any other domain."
How Does TOGAF BA Work?
TOGAF BA is a specialization of TOGAF and a separate qualification from TOGAF. It offers a more strategic approach than the wider framework. In fact, the ‘Business Architecture’ phase of the TOGAF ADM is relatively generic in comparison. TOGAF BA goes into far greater detail in terms of elements like structure, processes, and capabilities, providing models, techniques, and guidelines to take business architectures to the next level.
TOGAF BA works by utilizing a variety of concepts and tools to create accurate architectures:
Business Models - These describe the rationale for how organizations create, deliver, and capture value. They are, essentially, top-level views of a business’ structure, or what it will look like in the future. This kind of perspective can be extremely useful for high-level executives and decision-makers.
Business Capabilities - These describe what a business does, defining abilities and processes which a business can use or exchange in order to achieve specific objectives.
Value Streams - This refers to a stream of ‘value-adding-activities’ which, together create an end result of ‘value’ from the perspective of stakeholders or customers. Value mapping can be used to describe everything an organization does in order to create, deliver or capture ‘value’, which refers to anything that provides advantages, usefulness, benefits or desirability.
Information Mapping - This is used to define which information is crucial to various sections of a business. Business architects can then use this knowledge to create appropriate strategies for improving processes for consuming, processing, and delivering information. This, in turn, can help to boost integration and collaboration, ensuring more accurate financial and regulatory reporting while also helping to clarify business terms for all key stakeholders.
Business Scenario - Business scenarios are used to identify and record business requirements. That is to say, typical problems that need to be solved, the environments in which said problems occur, the value chains enabled by business capabilities, desired outcomes and various human and computing components. The purpose of a business scenario is to achieve a desired outcome. Because of this, a new business architecture will typically be composed of several business scenarios at once
TOGAF BA teams will typically consist of members with diverse experiences and knowledge. These varying perspectives help to ensure that business architectures can fully reflect the various aspects of a business, taking into account business services, business processes, technology, and more. To take an in-house business architecture team’s perspective even further, many organizations choose to invest in BA training for existing internal talent, as these candidates will already be intricately familiar with the ground-level elements which are to be improved.
The value of TOGAF BA goes beyond Phase B of the ADM. In fact, it can also have an impact on Phase A, ‘Architecture Vision’ which, together with Phase B, is considered one of the most fundamental aspects of the ADM overall.
How can Getting Certified in TOGAF BA Help my Business?
With technology constantly growing and evolving in the Digital Age, it has become easier than ever for stakeholders to fine-tune the various aspects of a business. Indeed, taking advantage of opportunities to improve is more vital than ever when it comes to staying ahead of competitors.
The relationships between the elements that make up a business define what it does, and are essential for helping it achieve its goals and turning plans into actionable objectives. At the same time, these elements must be continually reassessed in order to maximize clarity and efficiency.
In helping users to understand how an organization is structured, the TOGAF BA methodology can help a business plan, implement and support:
Business transformation projects
The creation of new divisions
Large-scale technology shifts
New compliance initiatives
Efforts to enter new markets
The development of new products or services
The restructuring of units within a business
The integration of key processes, capabilities, technology and cultural elements
Having certified proof of these capabilities can greatly help an individual TOGAF practitioner as they seek to advance their career. Trusted certification providers like The Open Group carry a great deal of weight, and certified employees often find themselves earning a great deal more than their colleagues. Passing the TOGAF Business Architecture exam will also win a student three academic credits for use in The Open Group Certification Program, allowing them to further develop their qualifications down the line.
Why Gain TOGAF BA Certification with Good e-Learning?
Good e-Learning (GEL) is one of the world’s leading providers of TOGAF training, with years of experience and several qualified experts in-house. The company was even awarded the ‘Outstanding Certification Product’ award at the 2018 Open Group Awards for its ‘TOGAF® 9 Certified’ course. GEL now offers a variety of standard-setting enterprise architecture courses, including packages that also feature the ArchiMate EA graphical language.
GEL was one of the first companies to market with a fully-accredited TOGAF BA training course. The learning content is designed not only to help students get to grips with business architecture but also to ensure they come away with an understanding of how it fits into wider enterprise architecture work. No prior knowledge of EA is required for taking the TOGAF BA course, though students will certainly find it helpful.
Good e-Learning offers a number of Enterprise Architecture courses:
Key features of our TOGAF Certification courses:
Accredited by The Open Group
FREE exam vouchers included
FREE exam resit available
Quizzes and revision modules
Instant 3, 6 or 12 months access
Practice exam simulators
24/7 Tutor support
Mobile app for offline learning
Good e-Learning also specializes in corporate training for businesses looking to upskill multiple employees at once. We have already partnered with hundreds of global blue chips to design courses which take their uniqueness into account, including their location, size, business goals, corporate culture and, of course, budget.