Enterprise frameworks organize, manage, and interrelate the wide variety of models used to structure and operate an enterprise. These provide a formal and highly structured way of viewing and defining an enterprise. An Enterprise Framework defines how to organize the structure and views and objects associated with an enterprise. An Enterprise Framework serves as guiding principles to establish a common practice for creating, interpreting, analyzing and using architecture descriptions within a particular domain and/or layers. The Framework structures the practitioner's way of thinking in the specific area with supporting maps, matrices and models.
Layers of the Enterprise Framework
Business Layer includes Business, Process, Service and Value
Application Layer includes Applications (customized and/or off-the-shelf software) and Data
Technology Layer includes Platform (such as operating systems) and Infrastructure (such as telephone networks and hardware)
The most notable difference between regular domain-centric frameworks and the approach taken within layered frameworks, such as the LEAD Frameworks, is the concept of building and structuring objects within a framework of interconnected layers of Business (Business, Process, Service and Value), Application (Software and Data) and Technology (Platform and Infrastructure). The main principles of layered frameworks and the interconnected layers are integrating and thereby interlinking the different modeling principles. For this, the concept of decomposition and composition is built into the layers and this is not considered done in the same way as traditional/regular Enterprise Architecture (e.g. like value and performance management as well as continuous improvement).
Components of Enterprise Framework
An Ideal Enterprise Framework should have the following Components:
Architecture Development Method / Methodology
Architecture Artifacts Map
Business Value Measurement Metrics
EA Initiative Model
EA Maturity Model
Enterprise Communication Model
EA Governance Model
Most of Popular Frameworks including TOGAF, Zachman and ASSIMPLER focus on one or multiple of these aspects. So it is important to invest some time in planning which Framework (or combination of Frameworks) is most suitable for a situation. TOGAF is very strong in terms of defining Architecture Development Method, Zachman is very strong in defining artifacts and Taxonomy. ASSIMPLER is capable of establishing a strong correlation between Business and IT and has a strong Business Value Measurement Model.