search menu icon-carat-right cmu-wordmark

Software Architecture Community of Practice at Raytheon

May 2014 Presentation
Sunitha Vallabhaneni (Raytheon Intelligence), Douglas Dusseau (Raytheon), Keith Nolan (Raytheon)

Presentation at SATURN 2014. Establishing a new training program and creating an environment in which software architecture community of practices effectively form and flourish.


Software Engineering Institute



Four years ago, Raytheon established its Software Architect Training and Development Program (SWAP) to ensure that a standardized, repeatable approach to software architecting is deployed across the company. The SWAP complements our Raytheon Certified Architect Program (RCAP) and fills a gap that existed in providing skills for software architects entering the middle phase of their careers. A key component of the program is establishing and cultivating software architecture community of practices (CoPs). CoPs facilitate sharing architecture best practices, lessons learned, patterns, strategies, styles, and heuristics among architects working on a variety of programs across our businesses. We found that the most effective CoPs are those that are self-organized as opposed to management directed. Key to the CoPs is an effective collaboration environment providing the latest news, brown bags, roadmaps, architecture process, tools, and reference material needed to educate aspiring architects. This presentation provides a case study of our motivation for establishing the program and lessons learned that apply to other organizations deploying a similar approach. We examine the dynamics of establishing a new training program and creating an environment in which CoPs effectively form and flourish. We discuss our approach, including the structure of the program, how the SWAP compares to the RCAP, and what communication approaches worked in deploying CoPs across our business.