SOA Governance Key to Effectively Harnessing SOA and Improving Business Processes

It may seem pretty easy to create a new SOA service. You have a great idea for a service that you want to develop and nurture that will automate some business process at your company, saving it time and money.

So one day you create and implement this new SOA service with the hopes that with your careful guidance, it will one day be widely accepted as a viable course of action for your company. But others around the building hear about it and decide it may be useful for them and before long, people are using your new SOA service for things you never thought it would be useful for.

Without an effective SOA governance plan, you can expect these situations to be the norm, not the exception

The main goal of SOA governance is to avoid problems like these. Different from management, governance sets the policies while management follows those policies. Therefore, without anyone setting the policies, management will do whatever suits their immediate needs.

Determining the decisions that need to be made, identifying who is responsible and developing the policies so management can make consistent decisions is the central purpose of SOA governance, which is established and supervised by a team of SOA consultants.

Decisions about establishing these policies center on a SOA service and more specifically, the service’s life cycle and the business processes it handles.

But more specifically, SOA governance establishes methods for determining how effective a SOA service is, chains of command, an apparatus to ensure compliance and communication among different stakeholders.

Successful SOA systems use multiple applications developed at different times using different technologies and platforms. What that means is services need to be reusable and common. In today’s world of complex applications, SOA governance is a much more challenging endeavor than in the days of simpler applications.

Therefore, SOA governance is more of a political than technical challenge

You can find the technical expertise to implement any type of SOA service at your company. The real challenge however is getting consumers and providers to work together. They each must agree on what they are expected to provide and what they can expect to receive.

It’s inevitable SOA governance will have to approach technological and business issues but fundamentally, it’s about getting people to work together.

Service-level agreements are documents forged by both consumers and providers, which are in effect contracts that outline where providers understand what they are supposed to provide and consumers understand what they’re getting.

Need help establishing a good SOA governance plan at your company? Contact SOA consultants at Innovative Architects today to ask any questions or to get started.