The Top 10 Dark Secrets of IT Architects (DRAFT)


Maybe you are already an experienced IT architect, on the way to become an IT architect or just a wannabe. In all cases this article should be helpful and give some new insights.

Dysfunctional Misconceptions

There are a lots of myths and misconceptions about the work of IT architects. One reasons for this situation is that almost nobody talks about the truth. At least with outsiders of the developers community.

Some of these secrets are a like a venereal diseases. They exist but nobody talks about it. The truth is that the architect doesn't make the architecture.

Common Decision Factors

Limited Know-how of the team

We should always select the best technical solution for a given task, but unfortunatly in real world enterprises the technical skills and development environments are a serious limiting factor.

Unfortunately, people can't learn new technologies as fast as it should be possible. Additionally, the management has in most of the cases outdated know-how and opinions. Don't forget in the best case they have been developers, but many years ago.

Boundaries within the organisation

System boundaries reflect often the organisational structure of a company. For example the separation of front office and back office leads to spitted sub-systems in applications.

Missing Accountability

Who is in the meeting?

Bad gut felling

Corporate history

Budget restriction

Legacy Application Landscape

Strategic Restrictions

Corporate Specific KPIs

IT-Architecture Manifesto

Always strive for the best technical solution

Don't be discouraged, if it ends up with a suboptimal compromise

Walk the talk

You must be able to design and code what you decide

Live Transparency

Facilitate communication and make decisions transparent documented

Share Knowledge

Share know-how and teach if needed

Influence without Politics

Manage politics, but don't be an active player in the dirty game