Enterprise Architecture

Last updated: August 16, 2022

What is EA?

Enterprise Architecture (EA) is a business practice that works in tandem with enterprise-level strategic planning. EA principles and practices help guide organizations through the information, business, process and technology changes necessary to execute their strategies and achieve major transformation.

Visit the Enterprise Architecture webpage in IT Connect to learn how to engage with EA, get started and explore a large library of resources.

Enterprise Architecture overview

EA provides for these key outcomes:

  • Reduced operational costs
  • Increased innovation rates and velocity
  • Improved impact analysis
  • Appropriately and well-leveraged investments
  • Decisions driven by good data
  • An adaptable enterprise

Understanding EA

City planning analogy — Planning for the future of an organization is like urban planning. City dwellers tend to want tolerable traffic, plenty of clean, safe parks, and manageable growth. Getting there requires planning that’s comprehensive, well-understood and well-coordinated among all stakeholders. EA calls for a similar holistic approach toward the optimal future state.

EA at the UW

EA Services Team (EAST) scope of effort:

  • Future State Planning & Roadmapping: Working with domain experts to develop future-state documents, reference architectures and roadmaps; and managing the repository of those artifacts.
  • Solution Design and Alignment: Working with teams to align their solutions to the future state and roadmaps. Helping teams design solutions that meet the architectural and business goals of the UW. Capturing the impact of the solution on various architectural artifacts (Principles, Roadmaps, Future State documents, etc.).
  • Concept and Business Case Development: Working with change leaders to develop their concepts and ideas and turn them into actionable business cases when appropriate. Helping change leaders to fully understand the business value and impact of their concepts.
  • Assessment and Impact Analysis: Assessing the impact of decisions and designs on both the business and technical architecture. Analyzing the impact on architectural debt.
  • Initiative Support and Delivery: Helping change leaders keep initiatives aligned with the architectural goals.

The EA “Reality Check”

“If your EA effort isn’t always showing a clear line of sight back to what it means to the enterprise, then you should be asking yourself why you’re doing it at all.” (Jim Phelps, Director of Enterprise Architecture and Strategy, UW-IT)


Jim Phelps
Director of Enterprise Architecture and Strategy
Email | 206-685-2749

Rupert Berk
Enterprise Solutions Architect
Email | 206-685-9672

Piet Niederhausen
Enterprise Business Architect
Email | 206-685-1671