Architecture Best PracticeCI/CDEnterprise Architect

16 Common Architecture Best Practices

Digital leaders are distinguished by how they structure their IT landscape. The best ones, connect business and IT and enable you the flexibiliy to integrate next gen architecture as needed.

We’ve worked with our customers on developing a standardized best practice architecture that integrates with an existing IT landscape, while providing the ability to integrate or move to new platforms as needed. By positioning ignite left of Git, you’re able to house standardized API designs in one place for discoverability and reusability while using those designs to drive your various runtime environments.

Best Practices:

1. ignite as the initial and single point of API creation and integrated management

BENEFIT: ignite maintains an up to date holistic and abstracted catalog of APIs in lifecycle states ranging from blueprint through retired. APIs are created in a governed manner producing a consistent results.

2.  ignite as the API and API metadata system of record

BENEFIT: Avoid integrating separate repositories and ensure a correct, complete, and up to date catalog with alignment to capabilities, systems and experiences. A single repository maintaining APIs across lifecycles and versions for a single source of truth.

3. Generate API definition documents

BENEFIT: Create consistent Swagger and WSDLs through generation from one source and one configuration. Consistent definition documents makes API build and consumption easier.

4. API discoverability

BENEFIT: ignite manages the API catalog and becomes the source of truth for discovering APIs which in turn enables easier and more frequent reuse with corresponding cost reduction.

5. Use ignite to create and manage reusable data models

BENEFIT: A centralized store of information models lets APIs be defined in a semantically and structurally consistent manner with reduced effort during API design.

6. API definition abstraction 

BENEFIT: Define APIs without being tied to current technology choices. Enable technology generation changes (i.e. SOAP to REST) through regeneration not recreation of the APIs.

7. Use ignite to create and manage reusable data models 

BENEFIT: A centralized store of information models lets APIs be defined in a semantically and structurally consistent manner with reduced effort during API design.

8. Organize your catalog by business and technical building blocks 

BENEFIT: Reduces analysis time, increases adoption and value realization, ties directly to driving or delivering experiences, provides coverage reporting for usage and investments, enables a federated model with greater flexibility.

9. Map system of record applications, business capabilities and taxonomies to service definitions

BENEFIT: Provides end to end lineage and impact analysis; ability to group and discover based on business and technical needs; accelerates identification and deployment of next gen architecture.

10. Accelerators plus enterprise API Standards, Policies, Security to create consistent and complete API definitions

BENEFIT: Self service governance and enterprise standards are built into the design and build process; adds to developer productivity & reduces duplication and snowflakes

11. Git integration for controlled downstream deployment 

BENEFIT: Deploy generate artifacts from ignite to Git where changes are versioned, auditable and recoverable.

12. CI/CD for decoupled integration 

BENEFIT: Integrate with API Management, Developer Portal, ESBs and other enterprise technologies through a Dev Ops pipeline rather than through direct integration. Achieves component runtime decoupling, leverages existing tooling and expertise, and enables an open-ended set of integrations.

13. CI/CD pipeline to create and deploy API proxies, dev portal entries, testing endpoints, and other artifacts 

BENEFIT: Centralize integration logic in the pipeline where it can be controlled and updated independently by the enterprise. Once code is pushed to Git, it can then also be enhanced through standard development practices, and changes can be pushed back into Git and deployed through the standard Dev Ops process.

14. Templates to generate technical artifacts 

BENEFIT: Generation capability produces consistent technical outputs based on governed metadata values. Good candidates for generation include configured API proxies, Dev Portal entries and stubbed API implementation code.

15. API Management integration to capture consumers dependencies

BENEFIT: API consumption relationships are key to knowing which APIs can be deprecated and retired.  Integration with the Dev Portal should capture new applications (consumers) and new Application-Api consumption relationships once those have been approved.

16. Identify and prioritize APIs and Products 

BENEFIT: Translate business capability models describing business behavior and priorities into service activity.  Ensures a business value focused approach while coordinating multiple domains, programs and interests. Links expected KPIs to realized.

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Simon Hoare

Simon is an IT professional and customer of ignite at a large insurance company. His career spans over 26 years and throughout it has held a number of senior positions, primarily in architecture. In his most recent role, he’s demonstrated proven success in launching, building, and growing a successful API best practice program – moving the organization from a SOA strategy to one in which they’re leveraging micro-services and API management best practices, working with everyone from API analysts to the business. He’s been able to demonstrate not only an impact on the bottom line but also directly tying together business innovation and ideas with existing IT capabilities.

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