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InfoQ Homepage News New Enterprise Architecture Guide Highlights Diverse Offerings in Emerging Space

New Enterprise Architecture Guide Highlights Diverse Offerings in Emerging Space

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The Institute For Enterprise Architecture Developments (IFEAD) updated their Enterprise Architecture Tool Selection Guide with new suppliers and the latest assessments from industry analysts.  The Guide, leveraging evaluations from both Forrester1 and Gartner2, visually classifies the offerings of thirty different suppliers and identifies key criteria to consider when selecting an Enterprise Architecture tool.

Forrester asks whether Enterprise Architecture Management Suites (EAMS) are the “next center of the IT management universe”1, but what is the the definition of an EAMS product?  BiZZdesign, one of the EAMS vendors evaluated by both Forrester and Gartner, says:

A good EA-tool offers support not only for modeling but also for the description of enterprise architecture principles. Think for instance of business and IT goals, guidelines, policies and principles. An EA-tool allows these principles to be related to the enterprise architecture elements to which they apply.

Analysts says that a complete EAMS tool can identify the impact of  changes to an architecture, measure risk and compliance of changes to processes and technology2, support IT planning and governance and produce artifacts that aid in budgeting, strategies and risk assessments1.  A detailed posting on the ARIS community site defines an EAMS capability taxonomy consisting of architecture administration, architecture population and modeling, architecture analysis, architecture communication and architecture governance.

Forrester identified Mega, Troux, alfabet and Software AG as the leaders in this emerging product area.  The analysis firm also pointed out a number of other “strong performers” like Salamander, Metastorm and Casewise who are all solid fits for still-maturing organizations.1 The IFEAD Selection Guide demonstrates the wide coverage of capabilities across vendor tools and points out leaders, visionaries, challengers and niche players in the market.  Their visualization underscores some key points:

  • No single vendor offers full coverage across all capability areas and it will take multiple products to cover the entire spectrum.
  • While nearly every vendor offers solution architecture competency, there is much less maturity in the governance/risk/compliance area.
  • Nearly half of the vendors have coverage in only one or two capability areas.
  • There are many vendors in play, all of whom will try to shape the market to their own strengths.1

The IFEAD visualization is below. To view a larger version, click the image or visit the IFEAD site.


1 Forrester Wave: Enterprise Architecture Management Suites, Q2 2011

2 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Architecture Tools, 2010

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