On May 20-25, we are hosting a HUGE SOA IMPACT event in Orlando.
Have you signed up yet? Don't miss it......
There are over 100 customer speakers, analyst speakers, technology sessions like SOA design and architecture, how to make the case for SOA on a business case methodology for CIOs/ IT Managers, and even industry specific views of how SOA can impact your life.
We will have a great line up....all around the SOA Impact and the Adventure that it yields!!* Mark Burnett Producer of Survivor and The Apprentice* Jamie Clarke Everest Adventurer, Author & Filmmaker* Joel Cohen Writer and associate producer for The Simpsons * Carol Baroudi Best-selling author of SOA for Dummies & Internet for Dummies
Please join us!!!
Enroll me now [Read More]
Sandy Carter: Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) -- Off the Record
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We have talked about SOA and the value of the SOA entry point of information. This week we went public with more focus on customers seeing value from Information as Service. In addition, to people and process, Information seems to be a big focal for many customers!
To here about this and more ... come to IMPACT 2007 -- A defining event for SOA ! Enroll me now
SOA is a diamond store's best friend By Rich Seeley, News Writer28 Feb 2007 | SearchWebServices.com
Diamonds and SOA
Customers who spend thousands of dollars for a pair of diamond earrings probably would like the jewelry store staff to remember them the next time they visit. They probably don't want to have to tell a sales associate the entire history of what they bought in the past and explain personal tastes and prices ranges.
It's basically very easy for us with any application within the enterprise to access information not only in the data warehouse, but any database within our internal network. Greg Backhus, Director of Data Warehousing, Helzberg Diamonds That is the customer service challenge faced by Helzberg Diamonds, which has been in the jewelry game since 1915. Back then, of course, store managers kept customer histories in their heads or in one of those state of the art ledger books where they could scribble information with a fountain pen. Today, Helzberg relies on SOA and Web services to put a customer's history immediately into the hands of a sales associate at any of its 270 jewelry stores nationwide. The system is so effective that Helzberg is something of a poster child for IBM's Information on Demand initiative combining SOA and data integration technology.
Using point-of-sale lookup applications built with the SOA components of WebSphere, sales representative have real-time access to customer information stored in a data warehouse at Helzberg's corporate headquarters in Kansas City, MO, explains Greg Backhus, director data warehousing for the company. Even if a customer from Kansas City visits a store in St. Louis, all his history and account information will be there so the sales associate can provide the same level of customer service as the store back home.
However, up until the implementation of the SOA lookup application using Web services to connect point-of-sale terminals to the data warehouse, that was not the case. As any database administrator knows, filling a database with information is one thing, getting specific data back out in real time right when you need it and where you need it can be a challenge.
"We have a fairly mature data warehousing environment," Backhus said. "It's enterprise-wide and hits every subject area within the organization, but we have had challenges with all the different parts of the organization accessing that information."
Prior to the SOA implementation, sales associates only had access to customer information from local stores in their city or region, he explained. So in the case of a patron from St. Louis who moves to Kansas City, the local store could not easily get the customer's previous history with Helzberg. Getting the information would have required sending a request to the data warehouse administrators at the home office and then waiting to get the data back in a spreadsheet. Not exactly real-time.
"That probably wasn't happening a lot," Backhus concedes of the old query system. Since the store in his new hometown didn't have his records, the customer might find a new favorite jewelry store, which is the last result that Helzberg Diamonds would want. So the use of the SOA lookup application has been crucial to what Backhus says is the intangible of customer retention.
"Now, by using the central lookups, it goes back to a central database where all the customer information is kept across all the markets," he explained. "So there is a 360-degree view of the relationship of that customer to the company."
While he did not have ROI dollar figures for the SOA lookup application, he said it is achieving the intangible goal of enhancing customer satisfaction.
Besides the lookup applications, Helzberg has developed an SOA customer relationship management (CRM) application, which based on customer history in the central data warehouse, pings sales associates in local stores reminding them to send thank you notes to customers or reminders of servicing appointments.
"Now we use Web services to access backend data," Backhus explained. "It's basically very easy for us with any application within the enterprise to access information not only in the data warehouse, but any database within our internal network."
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This is a great article that I just got published in WebSphere Magazine. I think this Tailored approach -- for your company and your industry -- is the way to explore SOA!
What are your Thoughts?
Also P.S. Enroll me now
Read it here too
SOA Manufactures Success for the Supply Chain
There's no question that Service Oriented Architectures (SOA) will continue to lead the IT and business agenda. After all, an SOA offers a flexible, extensible, and composable approach to reusing and extending existing applications and services, as well as constructing new ones.To encourage business growth while still keeping costs in check, many organizations in all industries are relying on an SOA as a way to increase the flexibility and reuse of their exiting IT assets.Of course, with any new technology, there tends to be a lot of buzz - some factual, some not so well founded - surrounding the opportunities presented by an SOA. Analysts have predicted, pundits have professed, professors have lectured, and companies have scurried to sell what they had as SOA products - often missing the point that SOA isn't a product. It's about bridging the gap between business and IT through a set of business-aligned IT services using a set of design principles, patterns, and techniques.When you view your SOA as a strategic architecture, one that will enable you to align your technology more closely with the needs of the business, you'll gain greater business flexibility and cost savings. In fact, a recent study by Aberdeen found that the world's largest companies might save up to $53 billion in information technology spending over the next five years by implementing an SOA.While many may equate SOA deployments with the traditional early adopter markets such as financial services and insurance, there's a strong movement among manufacturers to tap into the power of Service Oriented Architectures.In fact, 21% of manufacturing companies have already begun to deploy or develop SOA software while another 46% said they plan to implement or evaluate SOA software over the next 24 months, according to a recent AMR Research survey.For those manufacturers evaluating, mapping, or implementing an SOA, it's important to be aware that the architectural style defining an SOA is that it describes a set of patterns and guidelines for creating loosely coupled, business aligned services that provide unprecedented flexibility in responsiveness to new business threats and opportunities. Coming to Terms with What Exactly an SOA IsAs you know, an SOA is an enterprise-scale IT architecture for linking resources on-demand. In an SOA, resources are made available to participants in a value net, enterprise, or line-of-business (typically spanning multiple applications in an enterprise or across multiple enterprises). While SOA discussions abound in every organization at nearly every level, the conversations usually center on the following questions, "How much?", "How long will it take?", "When can I start to see the results?", and most importantly, "Do I really need an SOA?"These are all valid questions. Remember, though, that the decision to implement an SOA shouldn't be taken lightly. It's similar to committing to a lifestyle change because the IT governance to which your development and operational teams adhere to will be quite different.Still, an SOA can prove to be the most effective way to align IT more closely with the needs of your business.And though the intricacies of each SOA deployment will be unique to each organization, there's a proven path to success that relies on four fundamental aspects: model, assemble, deploy, and manage. When manufacturers follow this path, their end results have proven to be far greater than if they hadn't leveraged the methodology. Top 10 Benefits of an SOA for a ManufacturerWhile SOA continues to dominate the spotlight of most organizations, it's important to note that of any industry, manufacturing is one of the ripest for SOA adoption and acceleration based on the following 10 factors. 1. Leverages existing investments in ERP 2. Streamlines the supply chain 3. Improves customer service 4. Aligns IT with your business goals 5. Offers greater visibility into products 6. Consolidated and consistent views of information through one consolidated view; manufacturers, partners, and customers alike can better manage inventory costs, reduce duplicate orders, and curb shipment delays. 7. Maximizes inventory 8. Eliminates additional IT work 9. Helps adhere to regulatory compliance 10. Cost savings Business has gotten increasingly complex over the last couple of decades. Factors such as mergers, regulations, global competition, outsourcing, and partnering have shifted the way that business is conducted. Yet companies can be hampered in their ability to keep pace due to outdated IT systems that don't maximize their investments, align with their business goals, or extend and build their community of business partners and customers. This is where an SOA can prove most valuable. SOAs can solve immediate business problems while simultaneously laying the groundwork for flexible IT that's capable of adapting quickly to changing business conditions. Backed by robust standards, technologies and best practices, SOA will let manufacturers reap tremendous results with a tangible ROI on their IT investments allowing them to leverage their existing IT assets, dramatically improve business process productivity and ROI, and rapidly create competitive advantage by making their business processes work harder for their company.[Read More]
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I know you 'speak the language of SOA' very well .... and so I wanted to give you a sneak preview of my new book "The New Language of Business: SOA and Web 2.0" available this week. It was one of my top 100 things that I wanted to do in life...write a book!!! This one I think is cool as I actually got to profile successful SOA projects at more than 40 companies around the world... big companies like Sprint, Pep Boys, the U.S. Open, People’s Bank of China... and smaller ones that are really pushing the envelope with SOA.
Here's a digital sampler Chapter View for you to check out - let me know what you think![Read More]
Yesterday I had a super experience being interviewed on the radio (yes, a live radio show!) on VoiceAmerica with Dave Sasson about SOA (what else!). Dave is not only a super cool radio personality but a CTO as well. He set up a "dialogue" with me on SOA....how to get started, lessons learned, case studies and much more. It was a fun experience and I've already gotten lots of good notes from listeners across the US!
The replay is available at: Listen now
Don't forget to sign up for IMPACT 2007! A defining event for SOA ! Enroll me now [Read More]
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Well, I am so happy. I have a list of the top 100 things that I wanted to do in life...and one of those was to write a book. Of course, I really wanted it to be a murder mystery (maybe next time!) however, since I love SOA (as you all know!) I am thrilled.
The book just arrived .... and I wanted you guys to check it out and provide me your feedback.
Thank you so much for your notes and comments as we've gone as your comments have influenced my thoughts!
I will be doing my book signing at the IMPACT 2007 event-- A defining event for SOA ! Enroll me now
For more information ... go to ... Books by Sandy! [Read More]