Business Participation and Roles for SOA Success
KerrieH 110000JQ5R Visits (3034)
I met with a team of folks, enterprise architects, application managers, operations managers and executives responsible for various facets of IT in the organization. Everyone had a fairly sound perspective on SOA but the most pressing question was how to make SOA adoption something more than an IT endeavor with a focus on the question of what roles should business play in an SOA journey?
In the ideal world or situation business leaders understand that differentiation and innovation is made possible by doing something different. Every organization has access to the same technology, software products and vendors. Like a car race, all competitors will more or less have the same racing car design, same number of mechanics, same pit crew. That being the case strategy means a lot. If you are behind someone, you're going to be behind them until the finish line unless you do or try something different. For some organizations it is this genesis that makes business pay attention because the problem being addressed requires a change. But this is the easy scenario, the one where business and IT collaboration is necessary for time to value, for a market opportunity to be realized.
However, even in this scenario there can be false starts. Where SOA is treated solely as an IT endeavor and the focus is largely on the IT aspects of service development with no consideration for the role of business stakeholders to provide value beyond superior integration. Make no mistake improving integration is good but there may be more opportunity for increased business value.
In all cases the more business participation presents the greater the success of deployments because SOA is treated as a journey rather than an end goal. Funding and governance take center stage versus an after thought. When SOA is pursued solely as an IT improvement, strong possibilities exist for derailment, loss of funding / support and for the proliferation of services which don't make a huge impact on the business in terms of time to value.
Four business roles exist in the SOA journey which when enacted facilitate a successful SOA journey: