SOA / Web Services

Service Oriented Architecture and Business Process ManagementEnterprises now recognize that building new applications that integrate business logic and application data within the enterprise and between suppliers, partners and customers is critical for their success . However, such integration endeavors remain complex, expensive and risky. Ryancom Info Tech was earlier to recognize that Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) is going to be the new wave of application development. SOA lets heterogeneous environments and applications exist while leveraging existing applications and infrastructure. This helps code reuse, reducing costs and risks while speeding time-to-market.

Service Oriented Architecture leverages open standards to represent virtually all software assets as services, including legacy applications, Commercial-Off-The-Shelf (COTS) systems, Custom development applications, J2EE/ .NET components, EDI and Web Services, to name a few. Such an approach provides a user with a standard way for representing and interacting with software assets without spending time working with unique interfaces and low-level APIs. Linking Technology to your Business Processes.

The Challenge: Advances in communications technology have created a dependency between business and information technologies. In order to compete, your company must maintain modern computer systems that efficiently support business activities. This dependency has resulted in a tension between the constantly evolving world of information technology and the world of business. The cost to upgrade complex and monolithic computer systems represents a major risk to business owners, since the transitional phase may interrupt company activities, and employees have to be retrained to work in the new system.

The Solution: Release yourself from the tyranny of rigid computer systems by adopting an agile approach. With a Service Oriented Architecture (SOA), your company will move away from single-platform closed systems, to a set of loosely coupled webservices that bring you all the benefits of a monolithic application, without the constraints.

SOA is the realization that true success in the modern business world requires collaboration between IT and business. Without effective and agile IT systems, your business operations cannot be implemented with the level of control that is required to execute an effective business model. The true value of SOA is not simply aligned with the impact it has on IT; the true value of SOA is the impact that it will have in freeing your business processes.

The Interfacing Technologies Advantage:

With the process-modeling environment of Interfacing Technology’s Enterprise Process Center (EPC), your company can align itself towards an SOA design that mirrors the efficiency of your business processes. Mapping your company in the EPC clarifies what your software requirements are, allowing you to unify different tasks that can be accomplished by the same service, and find processes that make poor use of already-present systems. With the EPC, you gain the advantage of visualizing how your company uses computer resources, granting you the clarity to make reflective and effective decisions on how to evolve your IT framework to serve your business processes.

Loosely-coupled Services allow for the agile integration of business requirements and IT solutions. With SOA, your software needs are fulfilled by modular service components that communicate through a routing system. By adopting a SOA, business strategies and IT strategies can work in parallel, efficiently mapping business needs to operational resources without the need for wasteful customization.

Single-platform solutions create artificial dependencies among software components. These false dependencies hinder the flexibility of your IT architecture, and make it impossible to change components without modifying the entire system. In order to gain any flexibility with monolithic applications, the entire structure must be customized, resulting in wasteful, closed systems that become difficult to maintain.

SOA is a key enabler for 21st century business agility. By breaking down your business’s computing needs into discrete functions, you gain understanding of exactly what sort of systems are required to run your company. These functions can be fulfilled by independent and modular webservices that are loosely coupled through network protocols and messaging systems. By breaking your software requirements down into functions, you gain the agility to easily replace and integrate services without affecting the existing framework.

With SOA, your company gains the ability to grow without going through growing pains. Components can be updated easily without affecting the entire system. Existing systems can be augmented, and most importantly, all this goes on behind the scenes. Changing service components in a SOA system need not impact the front-end use by your employees. This means that with SOA, you can upgrade your IT systems without creating the need for costly retraining.

SOA: Allow business processes to define your IT framework; eliminate the constraints that IT poses on your business processes. In order to build efficient service architectures, the as-is state of your company’s data and application usage must be assessed. Most businesses have their IT framework set up to fulfill the compartmentalized needs of different departments. This results in an inefficient use of operational resources, as false dependencies are created between systems and software functions become duplicated. IT becomes aggregated, resulting in systems that impede your business processes instead of supporting them.

By modeling your business processes using well defined standards, it becomes simple to determine what services must be called upon throughout your ongoing business processes. This makes it possible to eliminate false dependencies between systems in your company, and allows you to develop more efficient service architectures. It becomes clear what dependencies are required among systems and what services can be reused. With SOA your company can effectively execute the model. Business processes work in parallel with the underlying IT framework that is required to execute them.

Bottom-Up Benefits:

    1. More efficient computer systems.
    2. The flexibility to upgrade and expand your system without affecting end-users.
    3. Improved delivery of computer services where they are needed.
    4. Rapid response to changing technologies.
    5. Allows IT to eliminate artificial dependencies among systems.

Top-Down Benefits:

    1. Execute the model. Align IT strategies with business processes.
    2. Allows business development to free itself from IT constraints.
    3. Allows IT and business management to communicate through a common vocabulary.
    4. Maintains consistent end-user systems to eliminate the need for retraining.