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Enterprise Systems Architecture (ESA)

Enterprise Systems Architecture (ESA) is a disciplined, structured, and documented organization of system functions and technologies. The over-arching principle of organization is that of "Separation of Concerns". Properly organized, an ESA isolates

  • business practices and processes from the systems supporting them
  • technology implementing various "layers" or "aspects" of the system
  • technological and operational dependencies among business units in a concern (departments, branches, divisions, …)

TethersEnd provides services to assess the status of an Enterprise Systems Architecture, to provide guidance in Architecture development processes, as well as to design and maintain architectural documentation.

Architecture Review

TethersEnd provides services to review a client's Enterprise Systems Architecture. Based on the review, a report containing assessment and recommendations is provided.

Typical Report Contents include:

  • Gap Analysis – An assessment of missing documentation and considerations is made. These missing elements in an architecture are often areas that "surprise" the organization due to the fact that they have not been formally addressed and synchronized with the overall architectural framework.
  • Assessment of Separation of Concerns – Dependency among multiple architectural aspects is assessed, e.g., Business Architecture, Application Architecture, Execution Architecture, Services Architecture, Physical Architecture, Security Architecture, …
  • Assessment of Technology Dependency – The ESA is examined for inadvertent or inappropriate dependency on specific technologies such as computational hardware, operating systems, implementation languages, service facilities, vendor applications, …
  • Recommended Courses of Action – Based on the above analyses and assessments, a prioritized course or list of actions is recommended.

The scope of an Architectural Review varies with the customer's requirements. It is not unusual for an initial high level review to be performed to enable the organization of more detailed architectural reviews and action plans in the future.


ESA Development Methodology

At the core of a successful Enterprise Systems Architecture is a solid, quality-oriented development methodology directly driven by business requirements. Not all methodologies fit all projects. Depending on the size and nature of the project, a methodology can be "over-kill" or too light-weight. TethersEnd can assist in the design of a development methodology that fits the size of client's project. The methodology will be based on modern, industry-accepted methodologies but tailored, if necessary, to the specific needs of the project. Training can be provided in a number of aspects of the methodology.

Model Driven Architecture® (MDA®)

TethersEnd can help a client adopt a Model Driven Architecture approach in the context of a methodology program that fits the staff and scope of a project, be it a product development program or a full enterprise systems architecture.

Artifact Design & Management

An effective Enterprise System Architecture is based on inter-related documents, models, processes and executable code. Designing a maintainable documentation set that is always current is essential in assuring a quality-centric architecture.

TethersEnd can provide guidance in:

  • defining the profile of documents necessary to produce the system,
  • identifying superfluous documentation that is not value-added,
  • designing procedures and processes to cost-effectively keep the documentation up to date.

TethersEnd can provide technical writing and editing services to merge and re-factor technical documentation as necessary.


"Model Driven Architecture" and "MDA" are registered trademarks of the Object Management Group, Inc. in the United States and/or other countries.

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This page last updated 15 June 2004

© Copyright 2004-2006; Larry L. Johnson, all rights reserved