This week, The Open Group published two new standards: the Open Group Service Integration Maturity Model-henceforth, OSIMM -- and SOA Governance Framework.
I know, I know. Just what you needed, right? More standards.
Well, maybe. I'll grant you, the SOA Governance Framework sounds like a bit of snoozer, since there are already lots of other governance frameworks. Here's what you need to know about that: The key difference between The Open Group's SOA Governance Framework and other frameworks is this new framework is specifically for governing SOA, as opposed to ITIL, COBIT and ValIT, which are more broadly applied to IT.
Since the Open Group writes specifically for enterprises, the framework has that going for it as well.
But the OSIMM looks a bit more intriguing to me. Granted, most of what's been written about it thus far is parroting the press release, but I have to say, it's an interesting concept. Here's why:
First, you can use OSIMM for SOA and cloud computing. TechTarget reports others are working to build a standard architecture around cloud computing, including the Object Management Group, but it looks like The Open Group beat them to the punch.
Second, this framework is for using in the early days of adopting SOA or cloud computing, because the whole point is to help you determine what level of SOA (or cloud services, one might assume) meets your needs, according to Dr. Chris Harding, forum director for SOA and semantic interoperability at The Open Group. (Shameless plug: I interviewed Dr. Harding in May.) In skimming the technical standards, it looks like there are seven levels of maturity and "seven dimensions of consideration," which is where you look at how SOA can help your company, given your IT and business capabilities.
Third, OSIMM promises to help companies create a roadmap for incremental adoption.
Fourth, it's supposed to help companies "achieve advanced levels of service integration" that align with your business goals, which I believe means OSIMM includes a process for line up your roadmap with with business goals.
Fifth, and finally, Harding says it will help enterprises follow best practices with SOA, and hopefully avoid those icky mistakes that spoil SOA for everyone.
The Open Group is a vendor-neutral organization, though as Alex Goldman of Internetnews.com noted, the frameworks were lead by "executives from the companies that are platinum supporters of The Open Group," including IBM, Capgemini, HP, SAP and Sun Microsystems, aka Oracle's Next Belt-Notch.
If you'd like to read more, TechTarget had the best coverage, though you can check out the short pieces on the standards published by ComputerWorld, InfoWorld, and SOA World Magazine; they're all offering the same blurbs from The Open Group press release. So, if you really want to know more, why not just read about OSIMM and the SOA Governance Framework at the source? Both are free, though you'll have to provide basic information-name, phone, work contact info-and then they'll email you a link for the full reports.