The State of SOA Adoption

Loraine Lawson

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.

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Add Comment      Leave a comment on this blog post
Oct 23, 2008 12:03 PM Klaus Schulz Klaus Schulz  says:
Nothing could be further from the truth....!Another fun fact for us, watching the Journalistic Fools spread a micro story out over the World. Originated in a small SAP Users Group in London, where only 11 Members actually voted and gave their "opinions". Then carried out on Newswire, because there was nothing else on, and picked up bt CIO.com.Classic case of Hype and Sensationalism.-We should not generalize here. You are talking about a small fraction of UK Businesses that use SAP,and have to develop SOA on a SAP Netweaver platform, because it only makes sense in a SAP environment. Many fast moving, competitive global companies in the UK are far down the road to SOA, and actually, Lead many European countries. According to the last SOA Symposium in Amsterdam, UK companies showcased breakneck speeds in SOA adoption and some global, UK based companies were betting their future on SOA. "Everybody here is just talking about SOA, but UK based TELCO O2 is actually delivering over 100 Services this year, and another 200 services going live thereafter" said, Klaus Schulz, Chief SOA Architect for THBS, a SOA consultancy to Telefonica O2 in the UK.This radical development is mainly due to stiff competition, leaner processes, and the desire to offer more flexible, comprehensive services to their customers in ever shorter delivery cycles. Hundreds of other UK businesses in every vertical are very bullish on SOA, including Sainsbury's, Admiral and BskyB. And not many of these companies are using a SAP platform at this time....Major US SOA Software companies consider UK businesses their largest customer base in Europe, and fastest adopters and implementers of SOAKlaus Schulz is an author and consultant with deep knowledge and insights regarding trends and developments in the technology industry. See his full profile and disclosure of his industry affiliations on LinkedIN. Reply

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