Adaptive Enterprise Framework (AEF)

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The Adaptive Enterprise Framework (AEF) is focused on the aspects of enterprise architecture that promote business alignment and enterprise agility. It is not meant to be a comprehensive, all-encompassing framework that addresses every perceivable enterprise architecture view. For example, it does not address security or infrastructure service components. However, as far as the authors are aware, it can fit into other frameworks, such as the Federal Enterprise Architecture Framework, and make them more actionable as business tools. The AEF is an integration of value chain analysis, Business Process Management, [[[Service Component Architecture (SCA)]]|Service-Component Based Architecture]], and Business Analytics in the context of MDA. Within the AEF enterprise, architecture becomes a function of the analytic processes that guide the enterprise. It is integral to strategy, design, implementation, and operations of a business enterprise. It does not start and stop as a periodic process for “cleaning house,” but is an everyday part of enterprise activities. It achieves this status by providing an enterprise modeling environment that can be integrated into ongoing business operations and can become an integral tool for managing the enterprise. The GSA Portman Proof of Concept demonstrates an instance of using AEF to define a portion of an enterprise, and demonstratse how it can become part of the management infrastructure. [1]

The Adaptive Enterprise Framework (AEF) Principles[2]
Unlike other more generic frameworks, AEF assumes an immediate commitment to several key architectural principles:

  • 1. Customer Value Driven: Using value chain analysis to effectively align the enterprise to customer and market place needs and realities;
  • 2. Integrated Business Model: Using BPM to define an integrated business model that includes business processes, application services, and information. This properly positions the definition of application and information logic into the business architecture where it belongs;
  • 3. Model Driven Architecture: Commitment to migrating business logic from legacy bound fragile programming languages to platform independent business modeling languages;
  • 4. Performance Based Enterprise Management: Making performance management an integral part of the enterprise model and using business analytics to provide predictive indicators of future performance or changes to market requirements;
  • 5. Service-Component Based Architecture: Commitment to provisioning business logic as reusable components that can be instantiated to support varying non-functional requirements, i.e., scaleability, security, QoS, reliability, and availability;
  • 6. Traceable Service Based Technology Architecture: Defines technology components as services with traceability to the business process areas supported;
  • 7. The Infrastructure is the Architecture: While it is helpful in most large enterprises to have a documented enterprise architecture, it is far more important to have a working one. Without a doubt, there are many well-documented and elegant architectures that never have been implemented, making them useless. There are also elegant and effective architectures with no central supporting documentation.

Adaptive Enterprise Framework
Source: CGMA

See Also


  1. What is Adaptive Enterprise Framework? BP Trends
  2. The Adaptive Enterprise Framework (AEF) Principles

Further Reading

CIO Desk Reference

(Relevant content on this topic in the CIO Toolkit on CIO Index)