The digitalization of industries has created the need to define a new type of architecture, one that provides a robust foundation to enable change. As of now, the term “digital architecture” does not have a common industry definition. Nonetheless, with the emergence of digital technologies and the demand for increased business agility, some industry frameworks have emerged to guide the definition of the term. This article provides context for the definition of digital architecture and reveals that customer-centricity is at its core.
What is Digital Architecture?
The concept of digital architecture has been used to describe aspects of IT architecture that emphasize the use of digital technologies to achieve business outcomes. Although this emergent field has not yet been fully defined, the digital revolution has heavily influenced it.
Several known architectures deal with design at different layers. Enterprise architecture (EA) deals with planning from a strategic, big-picture standpoint and comprises various domains. The business architecture domain explains how a company needs to operate to achieve business goals. Data architecture provides an understanding of how to address data management issues. Application architecture deals with application models relevant to business functions, while technology architecture manages the structure and interaction of platform services with logical and physical technology components. Finally, solution architecture glues all the domain architectures together around a particular solution.
Digital architecture is more an architectural discipline applied to solution architecture than an architectural domain of its own. It is a discipline that redefines the solution design process and shifts the focus from the business problem to the customer experience. Digital architecture involves internal stakeholders shifting paradigms from thinking of solutions from within to fully incorporating external stakeholders (customers) in the solution design process…
You’ve got to start with the customer experience and work backwards for the technology. - Steve Jobs
This article is published in the Cutter Business Technology Journal.
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