Assessing architecture

OMB's Enterprise Architecture Assessment Framework

Agency officials can assess the capability of their agencies' enterprise architecture to make sure it properly guides investments and follows the federal framework.

Officials at the Office of Management and Budget have released Version 1.0 of the Enterprise Architecture Assessment Framework to determine a baseline of enterprise architecture governmentwide. A second version is being developed from agency and CIO Council feedback.

"By proactively applying the assessment, agencies can prevent [or identify and address] potential EA development and application issues as early as possible," according to the guidelines, posted by the Federal Enterprise Architecture Program Management Office.

The self-assessment is meant to complement the General Accounting Office's EA Management Maturity Framework, which assess program capacity. OMB's assessment looks at the maturity of the agency's architecture, including the capability of the architecture to guide investment decisions in the capital planning and investment control process. It also looks at the integration of the architecture with the federal enterprise architecture and shows areas for potential cross-government collaboration.

For OMB's assessment, agency officials are expected to review the agency's capability in four areas:

Change: Officials examine how well the enterprise architecture facilitates the management of change, examining the architectural approach and strategic direction.

Integration: They examine how well it ensures the standardization of information and connectivity, especially in the areas of interoperability, data, business logic and interface.

Convergence: Officials examine how well it integrates the agency's IT as defined by the technical reference model, looking at components, technical platform, performance and security.

Business alignment: They examine how well it ensures alignment with the agency's business intent, specifically strategic goals and business target.

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