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Open Group's Architect Cert Hits 25,000

More than 25,000 people have earned certification under the Open Group's TOGAF 9 program, the group reported recently, marking a milestone for what has become a standard framework and method for enterprise architecture (EA).

Andrew Josey, director of standards for The Open Group, announced the milestone in his blog. The number of certifications, he wrote, was evidence of "a huge surge in the popularity of open standards over the last few years." He also credited the recent economic downturn.

"…Since the financial crisis began," he wrote, "open standards have helped by providing a framework that allows Enterprise Architects to save their companies money, maintain and increase profitability and drive business efficiencies. And, on a professional level, certification has helped Enterprise Architects to differentiate themselves, delivering better job security and employment prospects through testing times."

TOGAF, which stands for The Open Group Architecture Framework, is designed to provide organizations with a structured process for governing their implementations of technology, primarily software. It's based on the U.S. Department of Defense Technical Architecture Framework for Information Management (TAFIM), and was developed by a diverse group of member companies, including PG&E, Oracle, Rolls Royce and Microsoft. The first version was released in 1995, and TOGAF 9 was introduced in 2009.

"This framework is a synthesis of stuff that has worked for a lot of people in a lot of different contexts," Leonard Fehskens, the Open Group's vice president of skills and capabilities, told ADTmag in an earlier interview.

The Open Group certifies individuals, service providers, tools, and training around TOGAF. In 2006 about 1,000 people were TOGAF-certified; that number had grown to nearly 9,000 by the start of 2009.

Currently in version 9.1, TOGAF comes with a set of supporting tools, called the TOGAF Resource Base, but at its heart it is a description of a step-by-step approach to the process called the Architecture Development Method (ADM).

The certifications come in two flavors: "TOGAF 9 Foundation," which demonstrates knowledge of the terminology, structure, and basic concepts of TOGAF 9, as well as an understanding of the core principles of EA and the TOGAF standard; and "TOGAF 9 Certified," which validates an ability to analyze and apply the Foundation competencies.

The Open Group is a vendor- and technology-neutral consortium focused on open standards and "global interoperability within and between enterprises." The organization was formed from the merger of the Open Systems Foundation and XOpen in the mid-1990s. The group's initial focus was the development of Unix standards and certification of Unix implementations. Over time, as the members' concerns moved away from Unix as a strategy for multiplatform integration and into the realm of enterprise architecture, the group's activities and focus also shifted.

Posted on September 9, 2013