Everybody Loves SOA, Aberdeen Survey Says
Published: August 3, 2006
by Timothy Prickett Morgan
Service oriented architecture, or SOA, is hot, hot, hot. And if you are a cynic, as I can be sometimes, you might even say that this is the natural evolution of software development from stove-piped applications running on host mainframe and midrange servers from days gone by to a multi-tiered Internet infrastructure. But saying so is a buzzkill--and buzzword kill--for the software development and middleware vendors who are trying to make a living out there in IT Land, so just pretend I didn't say that and read on.
In any event, the IT consultancies are also riding the SOA bandwagon (and it is not lost on me that this is the second SOA article in this issue of this newsletter, too), and they are all working feverishly to quantify and qualify what's going on out there in software development as it relates to SOA and then monetize that knowledge. To that end, AberdeenGroup has done a survey of 120 IT shops to gauge their interest in and adoption of SOA technologies, and from that survey it is declaring that SOA technology will reach 90 percent adoption in 2006. Specifically, the study concludes that as we leave 2006, 90 percent of companies will be planning, designing, or actually programming under the SOA model. Aberdeen said that the acceptance of SOA technologies was especially high among companies with $1 billion, presumably because they have the most complex applications and the most pressing needs for a better way to integrate applications and develop them going forward.
"Redesigning business processes, high IT integration costs, and customization challenges are eating up 40 percent of the IT budget in integration expenditures," explained Peter Kastner, vice president and research director for enterprise integration. Kastner is also the author of a report called Enterprise Service Bus and SOA Middleware, which is where that statistic comes from. "SOA is broadly seen as a real technology step forward, with the largest companies, who have the biggest integration problems, leading the way."
IBM, Fiorano and TIBCO Software paid for the report, which is why Aberdeen is making it available for free. You can get your copy of the report on the Aberdeen site by clicking here. In that report, Aberdeen explains that companies are taking three different approaches to SOA. The first, which it calls SOA Lite, means creating applications using open source middleware to do lightweight integration with back-end systems to create, for instance, an employee self-service portal. SOA ERP involves midrange and some large enterprises that use SOA tools to extend their legacy ERP applications, while the third approach is called Enterprise SOA and it deploys SOA middleware and development tools in the data center to run mission-critical applications.