If you are TOGAF 9 certified, or thinking of training to become so, then you will be joining the growing band of people who see enterprise architecture as a vital.

It’s not the sort of news that makes the front page, and unless you happen to follow developments in the world of TOGAF you may have missed it. But at the end of August 2013, The Open Group announced that the number of TOGAF 9 certified individuals had passed the 25,000 mark. A more interesting statistic is that this marked an increase of nearly 8,500 new certifications in the 12 months prior. Of the 25,000, about 17,000 are fully certified, while 7,850 have passed the level 1 foundation exam.

The 25,000 milestone may not sound such a big step, but to put it into perspective, on 1st July 2012 the number certified was only 14,851. So the recent announcement shows that there is a steady increase of between 650 to 700 newly certified architects every month. To support the demand for training, there are 50 TOGAF 9 training partners around the world, offering 58 accredited TOGAF 9 courses.

Of these courses, a growing number are self-taught – with pioneers such as Good e-Learning leading the way!

I thought it would be interesting to look at some of the statistics in a bit more detail to see what it shows about the growth of TOGAF, and what that might mean for you.

If you are thinking of qualifying as a TOGAF certified architect, then it’s worth knowing about the geographic distribution of skilled practitioners, as this gives an idea of where TOGAF is flourishing most. Top of the list is the UK, with around 16% of the 25,000. This would indicate that TOGAF is rapidly becoming the architecture framework of choice in the UK, and therefore a very worthwhile and practical subject to learn about if you work with IT, business strategy, or organizational change.

Next is the USA with 13%, but bear in mind the difference in population. This is partly explained by the fact that other architectural frameworks are popular and established in the USA.

Prime amongst these are the Federal Enterprise Architecture (FEA), and the Department of Defence and Department of Commerce Architecture Frameworks (DoDAF and DoCAF).

The Zachman Framework, despite perceptions that it is too theoretical and impractical, also remains popular. Is TOGAF useful in the USA? Well although proportionally the ratio between certified TOGAF architects and the population in general is lower than the UK, the number is still growing rapidly. And if you add the number of architects trained in TOGAF with those who are using DoDAF, DoCAF and Zachman, the trend is similar to that in the UK.

So my answer would be that TOGAF is also useful in the USA.

The Nederlands have 10% and Australia has 7% of the 25,000 TOGAF 9-trained architects. Given their smaller populations, this shows an even higher adoption of TOGAF 9 than in the UK.

After that, the main TOGAF-adopting countries are India, Canada, South Africa, Europe in general, and increasingly the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia.

Another thing to consider is which companies employ TOGAF 9 certified architects. Not surprisingly the top ten are primarily IT-oriented: IBM, HP, Oracle, BP, Deloitte, Capgemini, Cisco, TATA, CGI and Wipro. If you are recently qualified in TOGAF, or considering becoming TOGAF certified, then these companies might be interested in your new qualification. (Of course – you will also need to convince them that you have the necessary background and experience to support the certification.)

While the 25,000 milestone of certified architects is impressive, a more interesting number for many people will be the difference that certification makes to their career prospects and salary.

This is the figure that might motivate you to get training! A recent report on IT Skills Demand and Pay Trends from Foote Partners is very encouraging. This report is updated every 3 months, based on detailed analysis of compensation and demand.

The latest report shows that extra pay for premium skills – awarded to certified and talented IT professionals – increased by an average of 0.84% in the last quarter, but that pay for those with architecture certifications rose by 1.8%. This was the highest rise in any of the categories analysed by Foote Partners.

Of particular note is a comment that for the first time since the ITSCPI [IT Skills and Certifications Pay IndexTM] was launched in 1999 an architecture certification and an architecture-specific skill topped the lists of highest paying skills and highest paying certifications.

The report also noted that certain skills, TOGAF (Enterprise Architecture) among them, are already paying high premiums and are likely to pay even higher skills premium in the near future. The research suggests that following certification your market value could increase by around 3.7%, or an additional £5,000 per year for a UK salary, and nearly $10,000 in the USA.

If you are TOGAF 9 certified, or thinking of training to become so, then you will be joining the growing band of people who see enterprise architecture as a vital skill in IT, strategy planning, and organizational change.

Furthermore – TOGAF certification can significantly improve your career prospects and job opportunities.

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Roger has been working as an Enterprise Architect since 1984, and over the years has been in involved in some of the most advanced, innovative and challenging Enterprise Architecture projects. He has extensive experience in applying all of the key EA approaches, including Zachman, TOGAF and Information FrameWork (IFW) and has been involved in establishing and embedding Enterprise Architecture Programmes that delivered strategic business results in organisations all around the world. Roger now works as a trainer, mentor and coach, specialising in developing individual and organisational capability in using Enterprise Architecture techniques and tools.