SOA Governance: Not a Crisis ... Yet

Loraine Lawson

As we noted in the most recent post here, 2006 was the year when SOA cemented its dominance as one of the technologies of choice going forward into the next decade. (The other is SaaS, and these two, not coincidentally, were major revenue producers for IT's top vendors.) One of the more interesting questions for 2007 is, what's next for SOA? For sure, one of the answers is more attention to governance.


SOA governance is hard to define in a few words, but it basically refers to a) keeping track of the services available so others can find and use them and b) making sure that services comply to appropriate standards. And while understanding the various -- and quickly evolving -- standards in the SOA world is hard enough, some feel getting programmers to obey them is harder. According to Gartner, programmers are "public enemy number one" when it comes to modifying services.


Surprisingly, however, the biggest problem with standards compliance is not so much with SOAP, UDDI, WSDL etc., but with corporate standards that define business policies. Failure to abide by these standards can lead to a financial train wreck.


Given all of the above, it seems that one priority for 2007 has to be getting the guys who actually do the work on board with SOA governance.

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