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The SOA Governance Vitality Method

It is unrealistic to expect an enterprise to define and deploy in a single project an enterprise-wide SOA Governance regimen that meets its long-term aspirations and goals for SOA, particularly while continuing to meet its current SOA demands. The SOA Governance Vitality Method therefore defines and deploys SOA Governance regimens incrementally. It takes the SOA Governance Reference Model as a baseline and tailors it to fit a particular enterprise through a number of phased activities that form a continuous improvement loop. It is not a one-shot activity but a continuous process in which progress is measured, course-correction is made, and updates are performed.

The method has four phases, which form a continuous cycle.

The SOA Governance Vitality Method

This section contains a summary description of the SOA Governance Vitality Method, based on the work of the SOA Governance project of The Open Group's SOA Working Group. The method is described definitively and completely in the SOA Governance Framework that is being developed by that project.

The Plan Phase

This phase identifies the requirements for SOA governance, reviews the existing governance regimen, and defines the vision, scope, and strategy for the changes to be made. It includes the following activities.

  • Understand current governance structures;
  • Assess SOA maturity;
  • Define SOA governance principles;
  • Define SOA governance scope; and
  • Define SOA governance strategy.

The Define Phase

This phase creates a tailored SOA governance regimen from the SOA Governance Reference Model, using the results of the Plan phase. It then analyses the differences between this regimen and the existing governance regimen to create a transition roadmap. It includes the following activities.

  • Define SOA process - by describing the SOA activities;
  • Collect SOA standards and guidelines;
  • Define SOA governance process - including the governing processes;
  • Define SOA governance artifacts;
  • Define SOA governance roles and responsibilities;
  • Define SOA governance metrics;
  • Define SOA process metrics; and
  • Create transition plan.

The Implement Phase

This phase realizes the tailored SOA governance regimen that was created in the Define phase to produce an SOA governance regimen for the enterprise. It includes:

  • Creating the organizational structure to support SOA Governance - for example, ensuring that the decision bodies described under roles and responsibilities are in place
  • Establishing the SOA governance processes; and
  • Obtaining and procuring appropriate tools and technology to support the SOA governance processes.

The Monitor Phase

This phase monitors the operation of the SOA governance regimen that was produced in the Implement phase, and generates requirements for change that can be addressed in a new cycle of the SOA Governance Vitality Method. It includes the following activities.

  • Monitor and evaluate SOA governance processes - using the SOA governance metrics defined in the Define phase;
  • Monitor and evaluate SOA processes - using the SOA process metrics defined in the Define phase;
  • Monitor external changes - which may impact on SOA and SOA governance processes;
  • Monitor and evaluate SOA governance technology development - which may enable governance process improvements; and
  • Monitor and evaluate current SOA and governance practice - new or updated industry standards should trigger a review of current standards used by the enterprise for SOA.
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