Read part one.
It's the problem that you have in a lot of early SOA implementations. That's why we talk about SOA as being the technology of business. That's why I say if you're only doing the technology and not doing it for the business value, guess what? You are going to hit a dead end. That's why the business has to be involved. You have to start from what business problem you are trying to solve, not what technology you might implement. If all you do is implement technology you can't articulate to the business the value and the business is not going to be interested in funding the project. Most projects are funded by the business. The business people say: "If I'm going to spend X dollars, I'm going to expect a return of Y." If you can't articulate that you get into the dead end problem. I think in the early days you saw it. That's why we help clients everyday to understand the business value. We always talk about SOA being business and IT. Is part of the success you've had with SOA implementations due to IBM's bringing the business in on these conversions, instead of the IT shop trying to make the sell and not necessarily having the tools to talk to them?
I do believe it's a huge advantage. We go all the way from the deep technology all the way up to business transformation. So we have this unique ability to span both IT and the business. When it starts as a technology-only situation, we can bring to the client a perspective of the business value and an understanding of the industry context. We can talk to the business: "Here's what SOA could do for you as an enabler. Ignore the SOA technology. An ESB? Who cares about an ESB?" Most people who drive cars can't tell you what's under the hood. Don't worry about what's under the hood. Think about the value that it provides. So we try to bridge the gap between that technology and the business. We can do that because we've got consultants who have deep knowledge of client's industry. They understand the domain. We can go in and consult from that perspective, so we can do it from the technology, from the business and in most cases we try to bring both together. Because there's no question that when they are both together at the table the chance of success goes up by an order of magnitude. It helps to have the CEO's phone number, is that a factor?
No. At the end of the day the CEO worries about business metrics and ratios. You've got to be able to articulate the business value. And that's more at the line of business level. Somebody was saying every five years everything gets renamed in the technology world. What do you think SOA is going to get renamed as?