ISEB Enterprise and Solutions Architecture – update

Following from my previous post I can confirm that the exam was pretty easy having got a pretty reasonable passing mark after completing the exam in ~25 minutes.

I have yet to see many job specs that require this certification so I don’t know how CV enhancing it really is.  However many job specs want knowledge of or familiarity with architecture frameworks such as TOGAF and Zachman, if you are not already fairly familiar with these then this course does provide a good overview and comparison of some frameworks.

Overall my assessment of the course / exam is as before – I think well worth while from the point of view of getting an overview of various architecture frameworks and the terminologies used, as well as meeting people from a variety of business backgrounds.  This should assist with any requirement for knowledge of architecture frameworks / methodologies your current or future roles have.  The caveat in terms of career value is that the certification itself seems to be in very low demand.


Requirements are key

I see project after project take longer than it should and have a considerably more complex design phase than is necessary.  This is often, but not always, down to a combination of poorly defined and / or changing requirements.

Things change, but this should be in a controlled manner.  For anyone working in the architecture, solutions, or indeed development space do yourselves a favour and try not to start detailed design and development work until the requirements are clearly defined, understood, signed off and change controlled.

This will make your life a lot easier and actually lead to solutions that better meet the needs of your business as the requirement(s) will be well thought out and clearly defined.

Challenge the requirements! Along with ensuring requirements are clearly defined, challenge them, are they genuine requirements, do they clearly meet business / regulatory etc. needs, are they requirements or ‘nice to haves’.

All designs should be requirements led; Solid requirements enable the right solutions.


The minimum technology to meet the requirements

The heading from this post is actually an idea stolen from a Microsoft article.

Many of us love technology and genuinely want to solve the problems we are presented with.  The challenge comes in ensuring the love of technology is tempered with keeping the requirements, and local skill sets etc. in mind.

The ‘perfect’ solution with the best performance, highest resilience, quickest recovery etc. may actually be far more than is required.

The perfect solution for the requirement in hand is the one that uses the minimum technology and is the simplest, while still meeting all the requirements.

So for all you architects and solutions guys and girls out there, whenever you have a problem or agreed set of requirements, make sure you meet them, but make sure you keep it simple as well.