SOA causes sore heads and confusion

CIOs struggling to realise the benefits of SOA.

The complexity of service-oriented architecture (SOA) is testing CIOs and traditional management strategies to breaking point, according to a survey by analyst firm Ovum.


Out of the 333 US IT decision makers surveyed by Ovum, 27% in large firms and 17% in mid-sized companies say they have at least dipped a toe in SOA’s murky waters.


But about 20% of those firms are struggling to realise the benefits of SOA.


The problem stems from the way SOA is implemented. Success depends on looking at the effect of SOA on the relationships across all systems and software, contends the report.


“Traditional IT management approaches assume tight connections between systems and applications, while SOA environments are much more loosely coupled,” says report author Mary Johnston Turner.


Firms need to follow IT service management best practices such as IT Infrastructure Library (ITIL) to prevent them drowning in complexity. Companies that use ITIL alongside policy-based automated management tools are twice as likely to view SOA as meeting their business goals.

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