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Lesson 2 The Role of the Architect
Objective Identify the scope of an architect's responsibilities.

Role of the Architect in e-Business

It is the responsibility of the architect to reduce complexity and maintain the integrity and quality of the overall solution. In defining both the problem space and potential solutions, the architect must be able to:
Architect Skills
  1. The architect plays a central role in e-Business by understanding each stakeholder's interests and formalizing those interests so that the solution alternatives can be measured against objective metrics.
  2. The architect addresses all facets of an e-engineering initiative, from the business strategy and vision, to the choice of tools and techniques to be used during the architectural process.
  3. In e-Business, it is the architect's responsibility to ensure that the solution meets expectations.
  4. An architect must have a variety of responsibilities.

Click the exercise link below to match the responsibilities with the descriptions.
Architects Role - Exercise
An architect is a person who translates the user's needs into physical, built solution. In addition, an architect must thoroughly understand the building and operational codes under which his or her design must conform. That degree of knowledge is necessary so that he or she is not apt to omit any necessary requirements, or produce improper, conflicting, ambiguous, or confusing requirements. Architects must understand the various methods available to the builder for building the client's structure, so that he or she can negotiate with the client to produce a best possible compromise of the results desired within explicit cost and time boundaries.

Role of an architect:

Take the business requirements and plan for the solution.
  1. take: this implies a lot of listening, communicating and explaining the process that will lead to the solution
  2. business: have the right interviewer and that he is empowered to take action and make a decision/
  3. requirements: one of the biggest challenges is the fact that requirements are often expressed in terms of solution. From the requirements, we must strive to understand the initial objective. To take the home analogy, the client knows he wants a "5-section with side-panels triple-glass wooden-frame window" on that wall, but probably doesn't know how the wall will need to be reinforced to support the 2nd floor. It is the architect responsibility to read between the lines and translate those requirements into realistic objectives.
  4. plan: It's also the architect responsibility to work within the constraints of time, budget and quality. This implies a vast understanding of the subject and the collaboration of field experts to gather the elements of the solution and mutually challenge the solution to come up with something as efficient and as realistic as possible.
  5. solution: Solutions are mutually accepted compromises. That last point is critical: sometimes it's the role of the architect to go back to the client and explain why the requirement can't be met, or why another approach might be better or at least, satisfy a fair percentage of the goal without necessarily constraining future enhancements.