Sample Set: Enterprise Architect Interview Questions

Author: Alex Matthews – Twitter: @remembermytweet

I’m interviewing an enterprise architecture candidate today. His CV suggests that he is an enterprise IT solution architect so I am going to probe a bit and see if he understands architecture of the enterprise. Here’s some questions I have jotted down as a framework for my own thinking. I’m sharing it in case it is useful to anyone else out the in the #entarch community.

What does “enterprise architecture” mean to you?

What are the benefits of EA?

Why would businesses come to SMS for EA services? What business problems can be addressed through EA techniques?

What business outcomes have you influenced using EA in the past? What metrics did the business use to measure these outcomes? Give 2 examples.

What are the contributing characteristics and attributes that make for a good EA?’

Where should the EA function sit in an organization?

What is the best EA artifact that you have seen and why?

What is the worst EA artifact that you have seen and why?

What is the best EA artifact that you have produced and why?

What is the worst EA artifact that you have produced and why?

What is the relationship between EA and portfolio management?

What is the relationship between EA and risk?

How could EA be use to support operational management activities?

What are the key determinants of success for an EA program? (Gartner says statistically, stakeholder involvement and support is #1. I would be concerned if I didn’t hear the words “deliver business value” in the response too.)

Describe an example of business architecture that you have been involved in. What was the outcome of that activity?

Describe an example of information architecture that you have been involved in. What was the outcome of that activity?

Describe an example of technology architecture that you have been involved in. What was the outcome of that activity?

Can you describe two EA frameworks and how you have applied them?

Can you explain the role of communication planning in EA and what type of stakeholders have been key in your EA experiences?

What is a business capability and how is it relevant to EA?

Describe an EA governance structure that you have experienced in your career. What were the pros and cons of the structure?

What is the difference between EA and enterprise IT architecture?

What dimensions would you measure if you were asked to conduct an EA maturity assessment in a client site? (I’d be looking for EA scope & authority, stakeholder involvement & support, achitecture definition process, linkage to business strategy, measured business value, coverage of the Eas content, future-state definition, EA team resources, EA impact & measures.)

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