Service-Oriented Architecture

Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA)

What is Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA)?

Service-Oriented Architecture is an architectural pattern which allows vendor-independent solutions, designed and modeled around your business. SOA increases business agility and flexibility, enabling organizations to react quickly to changes in their business environments.

SOA enables businesses to leverage their existing assets by exposing the functionality within these assets as shareable and reusable services.

Value of SOA

Most companies have developed systems that suit specific needs to any given business requirements. These systems are developed overtime by different developers for different purposes. Some of these developments are achieved in an ad-hoc manner.

These kinds of rigid structures and systems result in common business processes and applications being duplicated many times over. SOA enables businesses to move away from such rigid structures and systems by introducing a loosely coupled flexible architecture.

Legacy systems, applications and databases hold valuable information and data which once exposed as web services can be shared and reused across an organization. This exposed functionality can be leveraged to service common business processes and tasks. Re-use maximizes the value of assets making this approach cost effective while eliminating duplication.

Major Benefits of Service-Oriented Architecture

Increase business agility

Within a SOA infrastructure business components are interoperable due to standardization. Web services are language and platform independent making them loosely coupled. Business applications built by consuming services are no longer tied to particular platforms.

Service oriented concepts create an agile and flexible business environment where adjustments, additions and updates to the business can be handled more dynamically by IT systems.

Reuse existing assets

Legacy systems are rigid and not easy to integrate, however they play an important role in the operations of a business. Disposal of these systems is a waste, since organizations spend time and effort building and maintaining these systems.

Adopting an SOA infrastructure does not replace existing systems, instead it enables sharing and reuse of assets which in turn reduces application development time, maintenance costs and reliance on IT resources.