Change – The SOA Manifesto and Guiding Principles

In every thing we do we are guided by our core values and principles, this is what we grew up with, this defines how we make decisions. When things change due to a circumstances around us, that may or may not be in our control, it can have profound and uncomfortable impact on ourlives. Consider the story of Who Moved my Cheese (http://www.whomovedmycheese.com/). This story is all about change and how not adapting to change will cause us to miss opportunities.  Change will cause us to question our core-beliefs and principles and may or will cause them to change.

I have been working in the SOA space for a number of years now, in my latest role here at Amdocs it is all about change. Whilst reading on some topics in the area of Agile, ITIL and SOA (http://www.zdnet.com/blog/service-oriented/why-itil-service-management-benefits-from-soa-and-agile-methodologies/5738?tag=mantle_skin;content), I came accross a SOA Manifesto (http://www.soa-manifesto.org/), which really sums up the change that an organisation or a person has to go through when changing paradigms to serivces based architecture. One of the key challenges of SOA is this change, thinking about “strategic business capabilities” as opposed to a set of API’s for a scenario or a process.

Remember the ”good old days” of a large tech company and technology was king, the orders just rolled off the fax machine. At that time technology was king you had the best technology in the market, thats what people bought. A lot of tech-only companies started to see their revenue streams dry up during the recession. Why ?? technology was no longer king, having to prove near-instant ROI and business value became king. This shift put tremendous pressure on the industry to prove the business value of technology, which caused a major profound shift in the industries core beliefs and principals.  No longer was supporting a set of standards as important as the question “What is the business problem you are solving for me, where are you going to save me money?”. That doesn’t mean standards arent import, they are extremely important, but rather they need to be aligned to deliver specific business goals and objectives.

 In SOA we have always had the basic value we of “proving the business value of everything we do”. The SOA manifesto (http://www.soa-manifesto.org), really sums this statement up. The SOA Manefisto is all about change, change in our core values and principles in how we deliver and develop software of the future. In a more on-demand, SaaS strategy these core values and principles continue to hold.

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