Enterprise Architecture Implementation Wheel

Technology/Application Function Map

A Technology/Application Function Map relates technology components to one or more application components. Now, a technology component does not directly provide a service to an application. It does so through a technology service. In creating the Technology Portfolio Catalog, it was noted that filling in the purpose column was valuable. In addition to providing insight into the purpose of a technology component, the input from this column can also be used in the context of cross-mapping with application functionality. Incorporating the purpose column from the Technology Portfolio Catalog into a Technology/Application Function Map and articulating it in a different, more action-oriented way creates a technology services column. Based on services, a technology component can be related to one or more application components.

The Technology/Application Function Map is not a standard architecture deliverable according to the TOGAF Standard. However, the framework provides the room to tailor it to the needs of the organization. The use of a Technology/Application Function Map provides valuable insight and it is recommended that it be created and used.

Applying the method

Take the Application function column from the Application Portfolio Catalog and place it near the Technology service column in the Technology/Application Function Map. This allows you to see if the intended purpose of the technology component matches the function of the application component.

Technology/Application Function Map
Technology/Application Function Map

Example

The example above shows that Devices A and B both provide a database service to Application components A and B, and the same application functionality is used by Application components A and B. Therefore, it is plausible to assume that this is database functionality, such as gathering information, running reports, or analyzing data.

Also, what is noticeable is the use of an application functionality called Function C. This functionality is provided by Application components C and D and is supported by Devices C and D. However, Device C provides a file storage functionality as opposed to the web service functionality provided by Device D.

The conclusion that can be drawn from this fact is that Device D (the web service) most likely also provides a data storage capability. While Device C does this through a file system, Device D may provide the same service through a web interface.

The question is whether it is desirable to maintain two environments that provide the same service. The answer to this question, by the way, is not necessarily that it would not be wise. The fact that it comes to light when a Technology/Application Function Map is completed provides an opportunity to start the conversation with the organization about this observation.

More information

For additional information about creating a Technology/Application Function Map, please refer to Chapter 8, Section 8.2.1.5, of my book Getting Started with Enterprise Architecture.

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[1] This is the original Purpose column from the Technology Portfolio Catalog.