SOA adoption down from 2006: if so, why?

SOA adoption down from 2006: if so, why?

Summary: Are business leaders out to lunch on SOA?

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Loraine Lawson wonders out loud in her latest post: What's the deal with all these SOA "failure" stories and surveys? She calls on the carpet the latest story on SOA failure, which says SOA -- and integration in general for that matter -- is, like, so 2006.

Are business leaders out to lunch on SOA?

The article cites a survey of 450 decision-makers that found only 18% implementing SOA, saying this is down from 2006 levels.

Loraine speculates that the survey was conducted in the UK or EU, and therefore reflects different thinking about SOA than found in North America. Still, it's worth re-evaluating the way SOA and integration are presented to the business, Loraine says.

Let me add my theory that perhaps the adoption numbers are lower because there is greater clarity about SOA. General understanding of what SOA is -- and isn't -- has matured since 2006. Companies may have a better sense of where they stand on the continuum between JBOWS (Just a Bunch of Web Services) and SOA enablement.

Put another way, perhaps more companies now realize that they are still closer to JBOWS than they are to SOA. And more companies now realize SOA is a long haul, not an overnight project. And that's a good thing.

The survey also uncovered a trend that has been seen in other studies: that "IT integration and SOA are not getting enough board-level attention." A recent survey sponsored by Software AG, for example, found that only 18% of respondents say their CIO is involved with SOA efforts.

Business-level decision-makers, then, are out to lunch when it comes to SOA. The bottom line is we need more professionals to step up and take leadership roles in the SOA space, to help their businesses make the most of this transformative approach to management and technology. There needs to be more communication and interaction with the business leadership side of the house.

To reach these people, Loraine provides the essential truths that can make this happen: 1) "measure, measure, measure," 2) tie the initiative directly to the business advancement -- and not IT advancement.

Topics: Software, Browser, Enterprise Software, Software Development

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7 comments
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  • The SOA Problem has moved elsewhere

    My comments here.
    http://www.gandalf-lab.com/blog/2008/08/soa-adoption-down-from-2006-are-you.html

    I think the problem SOA tried to solve has moved elsewhere. With WOA ,SaaS and crowd sourcing the notion of a central body managing all enterprise services has diluted and hence you see a lot of JBOS
    njuneja
  • Computers work this way.

    You put data in, manipulate the data and then output what has been manipulated. That is all they have ever done and all they will ever do. You can call it anything you want but the functionality never changes. And thus the death of SOA.
    bjbrock
    • More trolling?

      You've never provided anything in your comments more than the equivalent of "SOA sucks." I'd like to say something like "it's clear that you have no clue about what SOA is" but you've never shared your thoughts as to what it is and why you feel it is lacking. Just mindless bashing.

      You're right that the basic input-process-output structure remains as it has since the dawn of computing. It is the pursuit of effective approaches to how we structure and organize those IPO components that lead us to concepts such as procedural programming, object orientation, event-driven architecure, SOA, etc.

      SOA is about how one segments and structures the components that "manipulate the data" and how "you put data in" and "output what has been manipulated." For example, organizing "IPO" components in an OO manner differs from an SO manner. So while the basic IPO notion doesn't change, the style in which we arrange the components can have profound effect and benefit (or detriment).

      Can you share more of the details behind your position?

      IMO, SOA as a term needs to disappear. Service oriented concepts are fine and will live on but "SOA" is loaded with baggage.
      reamon@...
  • RE: SOA adoption down from 2006: if so, why?

    As with other surveys, including the one by Software AG, this one doesn't say how they defined SOA for purposes of the survey. Nor did they appear to gather what the respondents' definitions were. Given the wide range of opinions on what SOA means, it puts the usefulness of the survey into question.

    "Business-level decision-makers, then, are out to lunch when it comes to SOA."

    This assumes that SOA is for everyone. I know this is more or less an SOA advocacy blog, but not every company needs transforming and SOA isn't the only way to a beneficial transformation.
    reamon@...
  • It's actually a political process

    If you think it's about technology, you are wrong. It's about politcs, just as it has been since the invention of the computer. I've been watching it fold and unfold personally for the last 40 years.

    There are those that want centralized control, and those that want distributed control. Those in each camp try to foist FUD on everyone hoping to get their way.

    That's all it is, with new jargon for each generation.
    ron.cleaver@...
    • Good points

      SOA is about architecture, which is predominantly about collaboration and communication amongst various stakeholders.

      SOA is not necessarily about centralized control, although many believe that it is. SO principles can be applied to any level of architecture, and the overall approach to managing an architecture could be centralized, federated or distributed.

      I agree that FUD is prevalent--which IMO emanates from a misunderstanding and/or disagreement over the business needs and how best to approach them. The effective architect is able to work through these issues, whether SO is part of the picture or not.
      reamon@...
  • SOA Will Survive...

    SOA will survive. In fact, given the down economy and decrease in overall IT spend, this is a crucial time for SOA.

    SOA integration projects can yield tremendous business benefits ? from operational efficiencies to value-chain integration to improved customer loyalty. In some cases SOA enables businesses to create new, flexible business processes and accommodate shifts in workload ? a scenario growing in importance given the current economy and increased industry consolidation.

    In other cases SOA helps break down barriers between information silos, leading to better integration between ERP, SCM, CRM, HR and Finance. This enables organizations to be more responsive to changing business priorities.

    Companies working under budget constraints and reduced headcount (And who isn?t these days?) find this kind of ROI appealing because it promises increased productivity, reduced costs, and optimized IT.

    SOA isn?t going anywhere. It?s finally meeting its stride.
    Craig_Prolifics