Who are the Key Architects Driving Cloud Transformation? Discover the Different Roles
As companies recover from the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns, digital transformation has become more vital to business than ever before. Before 2020, digital solutions were nice to have. Now, for many companies, they're the only way work gets done. And the cloud is an essential part of that change. However, achieving this goal requires a collaborative effort from various professionals, including enterprise architects, business architects, and solutions architects.
In this article, we will explore the roles of these individuals in moving to the cloud. We will also explore how they work together to ensure that the organizations' intentions are achieved correctly.
Defining the Vision and Strategy
Enterprise architects play a critical role in defining the organization's vision and strategy for moving to the cloud. They are responsible for identifying the organization's goals and objectives and creating a multi-year roadmap for achieving them.
For instance, an enterprise architect might suggest a cloud-first strategy to increase agility, reduce costs, and improve scalability. They would also write, and publish a target operating environment for the enterprise and then create reference architectures that outline the standards and guidelines for the organization's cloud migration. Effectively creating guard rails and principles for the vision.
Another key role in this transformation is that of the Business Architect, who oversees the development and implementation of critical deliverables including business capability models, business capabilities, and value streams. Business architects, work closely with enterprise architects directing the organization towards new strategy and vision.
For example, a business architect might identify the need for a new CRM system to support the organization's sales processes. They would work with the enterprise architect to ensure that the CRM system aligns with the organization's cloud-first strategy and reference architectures.
Designing Solutions Based on EA & BA Strategy and Reference Architecture
Solutions Architect also play a crucial role in cloud projects. They translate the reference architecture defined by the Enterprise Architect into practical solutions that meet the organization's specific needs. Working closely with stakeholders, including application development teams, infrastructure teams, and security teams, they ensure their designs are secure, scalable, and cost-effective.
The work of the Enterprise Architect and Business Architect generates multiple projects, such as designing the landing zone architecture, provisioning new cloud accounts/subscriptions, implementing compliance and security systems, and establishing network zoning and traffic routing solutions. Solutions Architects take the lead in designing and implementing these projects, using the reference architecture defined by the Enterprise Architect as a blueprint.
Once the foundation is ready the solution architects will work with business stakeholders to move or build applications in the cloud platform/s. The solutions architect would then use the reference architecture to ensure that the solution follows the standards and guidelines defined by the enterprise architect.
Creating HLD Documents
All large IT projects will require a High-Level Solution Design (HLD) document, also known as a High-Level Design. This artifact is instrumental in the analysis phase of the Software Development Lifecycle. The HLD provides stakeholders with a bird’s eye view of the system that will be in place once implementation is complete.
At its core, the HLD proposes a solution architecture designed to solve a business problem and generate customer value. It serves as a critical reference point throughout the development process and helps ensure that the solution aligns with business objectives.
For example, if the business architect has identified a need for a new CRM system, the solutions architect would design a solution that meets the business requirements while following the reference architecture. The solutions architect would then document the design decisions in an HLD document, which would be reviewed and approved by the enterprise architect and the business architect.
Collaborating to Implement the Solutions
Once the solutions architect has designed and documented the solution in HLD, the project teams will begin to implement the solution. The enterprise architect, business architect, and solutions architect collaborate to ensure that the solution meets the organization's needs and aligns with the overall strategy via likely by an Architecture review board (ARB).
In conclusion, moving to the cloud requires a collaborative effort from enterprise architects, business architects, and solutions architects. Each plays a critical role in defining the organization's vision and strategy, designing solutions, and implementing them to meet the organization's specific needs. By working together, these professionals can ensure that the cloud transformation aligns with the organization's goals and objectives, and helps drive business value. With the right approach and collaboration, companies can successfully navigate the challenges of digital transformation and take advantage of the benefits that cloud technology offers.