OPS05-BP06 Share design standards - AWS Well-Architected Framework

OPS05-BP06 Share design standards

Share best practices across teams to increase awareness and maximize the benefits of development efforts. Document them and keep them up to date as your architecture evolves. If shared standards are enforced in your organization, it’s critical that mechanisms exist to request additions, changes, and exceptions to standards. Without this option, standards become a constraint on innovation.

Desired outcome: Design standards are shared across teams in your organizations. They are documented and kept up-to-date as best practices evolve.

Common anti-patterns:

  • Two development teams have each created a user authentication service. Your users must maintain a separate set of credentials for each part of the system they want to access.

  • Each team manages their own infrastructure. A new compliance requirement forces a change to your infrastructure and each team implements it in a different way.

Benefits of establishing this best practice: Using shared standards supports the adoption of best practices and maximizes the benefits of development efforts. Documenting and updating design standards keeps your organization up-to-date with best practices and security and compliance requirements.

Level of risk exposed if this best practice is not established: Medium

Implementation guidance

Share existing best practices, design standards, checklists, operating procedures, guidance, and governance requirements across teams. Have procedures to request changes, additions, and exceptions to design standards to support improvement and innovation. Make teams are aware of published content. Have a mechanism to keep design standards up-to-date as new best practices emerge.

Customer example

AnyCompany Retail has a cross-functional architecture team that creates software architecture patterns. This team builds the architecture with compliance and governance built in. Teams that adopt these shared standards get the benefits of having compliance and governance built in. They can quickly build on top of the design standard. The architecture team meets quarterly to evaluate architecture patterns and update them if necessary.

Implementation steps

  1. Identify a cross-functional team that owns developing and updating design standards. This team should work with stakeholders across your organization to develop design standards, operating procedures, checklists, guidance, and governance requirements. Document the design standards and share them within your organization.

    1. AWS Service Catalog can be used to create portfolios representing design standards using infrastructure as code. You can share portfolios across accounts.

  2. Have a mechanism in place to keep design standards up-to-date as new best practices are identified.

  3. If design standards are centrally enforced, have a process to request changes, updates, and exemptions.

Level of effort for the implementation plan: Medium. Developing a process to create and share design standards can take coordination and cooperation with stakeholders across your organization.


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