The Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) model is being adopted by a huge number of organisations with the ultimate promise of saving costs, while improving operability, flexibility and functionality.
Gartner now predicts that by 2008, more than 60 per cent of enterprises will use SOA as a ‘guiding principle’ when creating mission-critical applications and processes. It really is a growing market and as such, opens up considerable new revenue drivers for resellers.
Put simply, rather than creating one large program, in SOAs applications are built from many smaller ‘services’, which communicate with each other to achieve the desired result.
Contrary to some reports, SOA need not be expensive; organisations can adopt SOA architecture and use the principles without buying any software. However, purchasing software offers end-users an accelerated way of achieving the benefits of SOA, and many vendors have software stacks that include additional useful components and business process automation and management tools that can also accelerate the speed with which organisations can get the benefits from an SOA.
The difficulty in achieving savings with SOAs is making sure that all the services are working together the way they are meant to. This is a major issue that resellers need to address by giving customers some relevant advice when implementing an SOA model.
The opportunity for resellers is that there are independent products now available that will ensure that SOA delivers on its promise. Lack of awareness is still an issue when it comes to testing. A survey earlier this year revealed that only 30 per cent of IT professionals knew these tools exist, although 90 per cent claimed that inadequate testing is a major impediment to successful delivery of SOA projects. This presents a significant revenue stream for resellers; it is only by implementing a comprehensive testing process that companies can ensure their SOA is secure enough to form the basis of their IT infrastructure.
As we head into an era of more widespread adoption of SOA, resellers should explore this opportunity to grow into the new space, by helping their customers cut the time and cost of effective SOA delivery.
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