Where SOA Is Working
Just forget about the hype of SOA and see it as a platform for ensuring integration with the many systems that are toggled together with hand-built adapters and connectors that don't scale. The IT organizations getting the best results today do the following:
- Take order-management trouble spots and apply integration to streamline these workflows. Web services show the highest ROI when applied to transaction workflows. Thanks to the development of more object-oriented programming tools, databases can handle this need.
- Look at how to use web services to create an order-state engine. Being able to track an orders' state at any point in time makes more sense as a web service, especially if an organization relies extensively on precise delivery dates or high levels of customization in product designs.
- Realize that web services start with time savings, not headcount reductions. The fact that so many early developers of web services are relying on headcount reductions to provide positive ROI is misleading; better to trim time from any order-management process over simply automating an internal function. Making order management and transactions the center of web services development shows ROI.
- Addressing security concerns. The ACID-compliance test of any web service is managing a stream of transactions. It's not enough anymore to simply tie together content and present it in a portal; that's Web Services 101. The true test of web services is in automating order management and transactions.