In previous posts, I noted that many industry experts see SOA as now being mired in Gartner's famous trough of disillusionment. In a recent Weblog post, Alice LaPlante of SOA Pipeline has released the results of a new survey that shows SOA is really mired deep, deep in this trough.
In the SOA Pipeline survey, 24 percent of respondents said their SOA efforts were encountering "significant difficulties." Of those people, a full 60 percent agreed with the statement that "our SOA efforts have failed." That's 14 percent of the total base, or one out of seven companies.
LaPlante also notes that readers expressed their concerns about the length of time it was taking to achieve results. Only 24 of respondents agreed with the statement that "our SOA efforts are right on track, and we expect to receive a timely ROI from them." A much higher percentage of respondents (43 percent) said their implementations were taking longer than expected, although they expressed confidence that they were "on the right track."
The results of SOA so far are very mixed. But still, many new initiatives are moving forward. In the same post, LaPlante reports that Merrill Lynch is embarking on a "grand SOA scheme" in which it will roll out a Web services-enabled portfolio revaluation service.
So the work goes on. Yes, we're going to be disappointed by SOA. But SOA is an ongoing effort, process, and indeed, philosophy -- not a once-and-done implementation. It's going to take time to work out the bugs and establish best practices.