OMB posts models for budget development


The Office of Management and Budget has released new and updated enterprise architecture reference models that agencies must use to develop their fiscal 2005 budget requests.

The reference models and the supporting services that will allow agencies to use them are available through the Federal Enterprise Architecture Program Management Office's Web site ( The tools are intended to help agencies develop the business cases necessary to get information technology requests approved.

OMB on June 12 released the second version of the Business Reference Model, which offers a more detailed explanation of the different types of services that the government provides and gives a better understanding of where agency initiatives would fit in the governmentwide picture. It also sets out how agencies, OMB and Congress can use the reference model in the development and oversight of a budget request and the development of each agency's enterprise architecture.

While the BRM is intended for general use, OMB also released the 1.0 versions of the Service Component Reference Model and the Technical Reference Model, which are written for a more expert audience.

The Service Component Reference Model is structured to support agency program managers, enterprise architects and solutions architects. Solutions architecture, a competency that is only now being defined by the CIO Council and the Office of Personnel Management, focuses on the same business and technology standardization issues as enterprise architecture, but at the program-specific level.

The model outlines the many applications and services that can be reused across the government for joint mission needs or even for completely different missions with a common element. It divides these components into seven high-level domains covering different types of services — customer, process automation, business management, digital assets, business analytical, back office and support — with multiple service types under them.

Agencies are supposed to use this reference model to determine whether any components they could use are in place elsewhere in government or if they have any components in-house that could be adapted by others.

The CIO Council is developing a component registry and repository that will make it much easier to find and share the right components for different needs.

The Technical Reference Model delves even deeper, providing a look at the common technologies that support the many service components. It breaks each technology down into four areas: service access and delivery, service platform and infrastructure, component framework, and service interface and integration. This format addresses everything from Web browsers at the access and delivery end to middleware and databases at the back end.

All three reference models will be updated in a standardized process that is outlined in each document, but the versions just released by OMB are the final ones for this coming fiscal year.


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