SOA With a Difference

Service Oriented Architecture

SOA: What's all the “noise” about?

Service Oriented Architecture

SOA: Loud and Clear

After three global centers in Atlanta, Sophia Antipolis in France and Tokyo, HP's only other SOA Competency Centre is housed in Bangalore. Established with the aim of helping customers in planning, designing, implementing and managing Service Oriented Architecture, HP has launched a comprehensive suite of SOA consulting services which are a tad different from the way the rest of the world looks at SOA.

Aimed to collaborate between HP and third-party experts, the centre provides exclusive access to architecture and consulting skills, software and hardware demonstrations, seminars and hands-on workshops, with the aim of building on HP's existing SOA consulting services and management software. HP's SOA is designed to assist customers through the entire SOA process, from envisioning and assessment to development and governance.

HP offers two critical elements for using SOA to run IT as a business: management software and professional consulting services. Robust architectural foundation, extensive research and attractive benchmarks across several verticals, a global network of third-party providers and HP Services professionals with expertise in architecture, governance, management, and security solutions, and a broad portfolio of SOA services-some of the key elements that HP hopes to capitalize on, in the months to come.

HP's SOA is structured across four virtual layers-at the bottom is the Technology layer, which essentially consists of the hardware and the physical network. Sitting on this layer is the Application layer, which includes the software, applications, real time tools, and other components. The third layer is the Service layer, which HP claims to be exclusive to its operations. The aim here is to connect the Sales, Employees, Products and Customers of an organization, and make their operations transparent. The reason this layer is stationed above the Applications layer is because Sales, Employees and Customers use one or more applications for vastly different purposes, but it is the final product, which is an amalgamation of their efforts. The final layer, is again exclusive to HP-the business process layer, which is positioned as an end to end cross functional sales order process-in other words, HP's efforts to become a one stop shop in creating, monitoring and maintaining a company's SOA.

Evolve, Design, Build, Integrate and Manage-these are the various stages in this architecture; the most important aspect being that after the Manage phase is successfully completed, it leads to a new process which starts at Evolve. In due course of time, there is scope for the architecture becoming more mature, and in turn, more productive. HP has put enough emphasis in getting the basics right-Assessment, Governance and Architecture, Service Development, Software Development and Management. The company revealed that in most cases, the participation of its customers trickles down all the way to the service development stages, following the principle that a customer knows best. Having understood his needs, HP then creates the Service layer which in turn modifies the business process layer from time to time.

Vishnu Anand

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