Top 11 enterprise architecture tools for 2019

These popular and emerging EA tools offer businesses everything they need to support enterprise architecture and digital transformation.

Enterprise architecture (EA) tools help organizations align business objectives with IT goals and infrastructure. These tools help manage information related to EA while helping companies plan roadmaps for digital transformation. They offer collaboration, reports, testing, simulations and more to help organizations create and implement models for better business and IT processes, development and architecture.

The following 11 EA tools are among the best currently available on the market, according to Gartner’s Magic Quadrant report. They provide a mix of visualization, collaboration, and project management features in support of a wide range of enterprise architecture frameworks.

Read on to learn more about these top EA tools and whether they provide the right fit for your organization.

BiZZdesign Enterprise Studio

Enterprise architecture (EA) tools help organizations align business objectives with IT goals and infrastructure. These tools help manage information related to EA while helping companies plan roadmaps for digital transformation. They offer collaboration, reports, testing, simulations and more to help organizations create and implement models for better business and IT processes, development and architecture.

The following 11 EA tools are among the best currently available on the market, according to Gartner’s Magic Quadrant report. They provide a mix of visualization, collaboration, and project management features in support of a wide range of enterprise architecture frameworks.

Read on to learn more about these top EA tools and whether they provide the right fit for your organization.

BiZZdesign Enterprise Studio

Bizzdesign Enterprise Studio is a certified ArchiMate 3 EA tool, which is a standard modeling language for business architecture tools. It offers web-based collaboration features with simple rights-management settings, heat maps, charts and graphs for business-relevant data and scenario planning tools to analyze project change management.

Enterprise Studio integrates with several popular EA frameworks, including TOGAF, Zachman, ArchiMate, IAF, PEAF, DYA and Tapscott. The platform helps organizations model, visualize, analyze and document enterprise architecture across business units. Using the platform, businesses can import data directly from Microsoft Office applications, and it also supports automatic data collection.

Avolution Abacus

Avolution’s Abacus integrates popular software such as SharePoint, Excel, Visio, Google Sheets, Technopedia and ServiceNow, along with data collaboration and visualization tools. The platform includes algorithms to run test scenarios to predict cost, risk and performance of project roadmaps. Abacus also supports more than 100 frameworks, including TOGAF, ArchiMate, and Frameworx — but you aren’t locked in to just one framework; you can work from multiple.

Avolution was created at the University of Technology Sydney. Although it has spun off from the university, the business still works closely with the university and other academic institutions. This allows the company to stay on top of the latest trends in the industry, and it also allows them to “pursue and aggressive intellectual property strategy,” according to Gartner.

Software AG Alfabet

Alfabet, which was acquired by Software AG in 2013, blends business, information, technical and application architecture into its platform. It’s designed to help organizations make business decisions, inform enterprise needs, develop solutions and identify the best service bundles for business architecture.

The tool offers analytic reports across multiple IT portfolios, including application project, technology and demand initiatives. Alfabet is GDPR-compliant and integrates with Software AG’s Digital Business Platform, which is designed to work with multiple industry tools and to support a wide range of software, apps, devices and users.   

MEGA International Hopex

Mega International’s Hopex aims to guide digital transformation while improving stability and reducing the risk of failure with business and IT processes. The platform is designed to facilitate collaboration between users, practitioners and decision-makers on one platform.

Hopex supports digital transformation and business and IT alignment. It’s also designed to assist companies with GDPR compliance, business process analysis (BPA), IT portfolio management (ITPM) and enterprise and operational risk management. The platform uses a unified user interface that provides each business unit with the tools they need to be productive, while keeping everyone on track with organizational strategies and objectives.

QualiWare X

QualiWare X offers cross-platform collaboration, notifications, change requests and data visualizations. It’s designed as a space for businesses to collaborate and to share knowledge across the organization. The platform supports several EA frameworks, including TOGAF, EA3, DNDAF, ArchiMate, UML, DMN and more.

The platform allows users to monitor KPIs and link them directly to business initiatives, process and goals to gain greater insight into what is and isn’t working. The software also allows users to upload a photo of a text document, spreadsheet or whiteboard and with the use of AI, will help you integrate that into EA models.

Orbus Software iServer

Orbus Software’s iServer provides features to manage BPA, GRC, IT portfolio management and PPM. The platform builds off Microsoft Visio, which can provide a familiar environment for the organization’s enterprise architecture development. Users can import existing Visio diagrams, while retaining the native file format so they can be shared with those outside the iServer platform.

iServer aims to turn Visio into a “collaborative multi-user tool where diagrams are driven by live data stored in the repository,” according to the website. The software supports popular frameworks such as TOGAF 9.1, IT4IT, and MODAF, with a customizable meta-model that can be tailored to the business’ needs.

BOC Group Adoit

Adoit from BOC Group is TOGAF-certified and helps businesses navigate compliance, application and technology portfolios, business capability, master data and IT risk management. Reports can be generated specific to one department or job role, while delivering insights into the cost and risk of IT project proposals.

The software also offers automated notifications, adaptable settings, web-based user interface, flexible and expandable features that can be customized to your business’s needs. You can try Adoit free for 30 days, but the company also plans to release a free, limited-functionality and cloud-based version of Adoit in 2019.

Planview

Planview offers a platform that helps business users understand how the various technology stacks in an organization impact business capabilities, application portfolios, programs, projects and products. As Gartner points out, it’s also one of the few EA tools on this list that integrates PPM into the platform.

Planview is designed to offer users visualizations into the complexities of business capabilities and technologies. Users have access to interactive analysis and comprehensive models that can help find flaws, manage risks and predict the outcome of planned products, strategies or processes.  

Erwin

Erwin is a data modeling tool that allows users to create logical data models from conceptual data models, but it doesn’t rely on a specific database technology. It’s configurable with multiple industry framework standards, including TOGAF, Zachman International, DoDAF, and ArchiMate, among others.

Reports are highly customizable, and users can reverse-engineer pre-existing databases built on different formats. Erwin offers a collaborative web-based experience that encourages cross-departmental collaboration through discussion threads, surveys and social features. The company notes it has a focus on innovation and transformation, while maintaining an eye on developing strategies with the best ROI.

Sparx Systems Enterprise Architect

Sparx Systems Enterprise Architect supports the modeling, design, construction, testing, deployment and management of software systems and business processes. It’s designed to support businesses as they implement the necessary architecture through every stage of the application development lifecycle.

The platform supports the TOGAF and Zachman frameworks, among others, and it supports several industry standards for designing and implementing IT software and business systems. Sparx Systems’ EA tool also allows for global collaboration in the cloud, model simulation and complete traceability from the requirements stage to deployment.  

Unicom Systems Architect

Unicom Systems Architect is an EA tool utilized by business and government agencies to model the systems, applications and databases that support business operations. It’s highly configurable and integrates with popular frameworks such as TOGAF, Archimate, DoDAF and NAF.

Like Planview’s software, Unicom Systems Architect includes PPM capabilities, which brings extra functionality for businesses. This is especially useful if your organization already relies on Focal Point, which is a decision analysis tool offered through Unicom.

This story, "Top 11 enterprise architecture tools for 2019" was originally published by CIO.