The State of SOA Adoption


I knew SOA was mainstream, but I was still surprised to learn that 70 percent of large businesses and nearly half of small-to-medium-sized businesses are building service-oriented architecture.


That's what Forrester Research VP and analyst Randy Heffner told ebizQ during a recent podcast.


What's more, Heffner said the research firm has no trouble finding success stories. For the past three years, Forrester Research has found about 70 percent of current SOA users say they'll do more, while a mere 1 or 2 percent say they plan to cut back. Said Heffner:

"You don't get a large consensus doing more of something unless it's working. But lastly, we at Forrester take a strategic view of SOA so we ask about it. And strategic use of SOA has kept growing over the past three years to where now 44% of large businesses say they use SOA for strategic business transformation and that's important stuff."

I suspect those figure are for the U.S., because a recent SAP User Group survey showed one-third of organizations globally were using SOA, according to this CIO.com article. Here's another fun fact: Apparently, the Brits and Irish are the odd man out on SOA adoption. The survey found that only 13 percent of UK firms are adopting SOA.


The Heffner podcast is available as a download, or you can do what I did and read the transcript, published below the audio file. If you read this blog regularly, you might want to skim ahead a bit after the first question because he dives into the whole "focus on architecture and governance, not technology" lecture. However, go ahead and read it anyway if you're hard-headed and don't believe any of the other people I've quoted about this, such as Todd Biske, David Linthicum, Joe McKendrick or insert-analyst-name-here.


The brief discussion about REST (and WOA) versus SOAP is good, though it can basically be summed up as "there's room for all three."


But don't skip that last, sassy question from ebizQ Managing Editor Peter Schooff. "Now where will a strategic SOA foundation let you go in the future?" Schooff asked Heffner. The answer goes a long way toward explaining how SOA can connect those final dots to create business/IT alignment.