Is there a role for architects in Agile Software development? Should they sit astride the top of the pyramid? No. Then where do they belong? In my post “Agile Architect – An Oxymoron” I railed against the need for an architect in Agile software development. My concern being that the power of the title gives developers an excuse to ignore architecture. Now a couple of months later I would like to invent a new position: Architectural Coordinator.
Unlike the typical Architect the Coordinator owns little or nothing. Instead their responsibility is to coordinate the efforts of various teams. They listen to the problems and roadblocks that teams encounter pulling out common threads across teams. In addition they make sure teams coordinate their actions across common boundaries.
Together we all make great products – but unlike the traditional view of the architect sitting astride the development pyramid the coordinator stands beside the teams helping them to get places without telling them what to do.