The SOA knowledge gap


"Are there any times an order can follow a path other than... (list from above)?"

"What do you do if there is an exception and an order needs to make an unspecified state change?"

Using parts of information from the answer, restated in another way, really can cause SMEs to think beyond their immediate or current implementation. They'll reveal more of the true requirement rather than the current capability. This is even more important when discussing business capabilities needed by a SOA.

To make this all run smoothly, establish a vision early on. Communicate it effectively with the SMEs and other members taking part in the SOA analysis. At first, your vision will just be what a SOA can do for the enterprise and how the process will begin. Over time, the vision evolves from the generic initial statements to a specific vision for the particular enterprise under analysis. This vision acts as a tool that allows you to convey the introductory and abstract concepts of SOA to the SMEs (who increasingly are aware of SOA) in a clear and non-technical manner. You may start communicating this vision, perhaps with senior IT management supporting you, but the enterprise will come to own it quickly and drive its evolution. This is where the pieces come together.

Dan Rosanova is principal consultant at Nova Enterprise Systems, a consultancy that specializes in Enterprise Applications and Microsoft BizTalk Server solutions. He has ten years experience delivering enterprise solutions in financial, insurance, telecommunications, and medical industries on Windows, Solaris and Linux platforms.