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Wednesday, April 29 • 9:15am - 9:45am
Why They Just Don't Get It: Communicating Architecture to Business Stakeholders

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Communicating about architecture is hard, especially with stakeholders who do not have technical backgrounds. Many architects use standardized languages like UML or ArchiMate as their weapon of choice, because of their universal applicability and formalized semantics. But often, such diagrams do more harm than good. They confuse the stakeholders, or they are dismissed as being “just for techies.” Using these diagrams to explain your architecture to nontechnical stakeholders can feel like teaching someone how to drive a car by handing over the technical design schematics—frustrating to everyone and not effective at all.

We present practices and techniques for creating architecture visualizations that are attractive, informative, and easy to understand for nontechnical audiences. We have developed and applied these techniques in all kinds of organizations as architecture consultants and trainers. Throughout the talk, we will show examples from actual practice of great and not-so-great attempts in visualizing architecture. We offer techniques and practices that help you sell your architecture proposal, communicate the current and desired state of an organization’s architecture, or create that much-craved sense of urgency, even when faced with the pointiest haired of bosses.

After our presentation, attendees will have learned
  • why communication about architecture should be done in a language that is tailored to the audience’s needs
  • creative ways to effectively communicate about IT architecture with nonarchitects
  • how to incorporate business aspects in descriptions/visualizations of IT architectures
  • how to deal with business people's different backgrounds, interests, and skills

avatar for Eelco Rommes

Eelco Rommes

inspearit/cibit academy
Eelco Rommes is a consultant and trainer at inspearit / cibit academy. He works with IT organizations to improve their architecting capabilities, often by visualizing the present IT architectures and fostering collaboration with stakeholders. As a trainer, he gives master classes... Read More →
avatar for Jochem Schulenklopper

Jochem Schulenklopper

Jochem Schulenklopper is consultant at inspearit on topics related to IT architecture, software quality, and web technology. In client projects, he assesses current IT architectures and their descriptions, and he acts as an IT architect, designing and developing IT solutions for business... Read More →

Wednesday April 29, 2015 9:15am - 9:45am
3. Salon E

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