Service Oriented Architecture

Service Oriented Architecture is a software development style that streamlines your software and cuts on costs. Learn about how SOA can improve your business today. 

Service Oriented Architecture can be a helpful concept to know about when designing the technological infrastructure for your business. Service Oriented Architecture is an innovative software development model, meaning a new way to design the infrastructure of the technological layout for a business or project. 

In the world of computing, there are different languages used to code computing processes. Service Oriented Architecture essentially makes it easier for services, defined as a contained unit of software whose function is to complete a specific task, to communicate with each other within a software. These services may have been coded in different coding languages, which is why service oriented architecture is so valuable as a software infrastructure. Service oriented architecture makes communication within a greater software system easier and faster. 

Benefits of Service Oriented Architecture 

Service oriented architecture is an evolution of software design that allows for adaptive software construction.  This architecture provides ease of communication between different software units designed to complete a specific task. Some of the innovators behind service-oriented architecture describe SOA as a highway that allows for easier movement of individual software components. A good analogy would be individual cars all moving towards a certain location or goal. 

Service oriented architecture can be beneficial and financially lucrative to use as a foundational mode of construction for your company’s technological make-up because it eases communication between different services or applications. This technology works on the communication between applications that make up your company’s technological frontier both on the interior of your company’s functioning and on the consumer’s end. SOA eases communication between individual software components or apps through allowing for interoperability between these individual systems, even if they have been coded in different languages or are part of other, different functioning software systems. 

This ease of interoperability decreases expenditure for your business by reducing the time spent and therefore cost of development and maintenance of your business’s technological service operation. 

Types of Service Oriented Architecture 

Service oriented architecture inspired an evolution in software development, leading developers to look at the structure of their systems as they would a business model. This has allowed for a smooth flow between business operations in and out of the technological sphere. 

Since the creation of service-oriented architecture, innovators have created specific offshoots of this type of system development. Here are some examples of the types of software architecture that fall under the umbrella of SOA. 

  • Application Programming Interfaces Much like the applications on your computer have a user interface to simplify your user experience and hide the coding and programming that operates the application, APIs are interfaces for pieces of software that allow for a programmer to bridge communication more easily between different pieces of software. APIs shield the extent of the software and reveal only the pieces that are useful to a programmer to utilize to build software networks. 
  • Microservices Microservices is a modern interpretation of the service-oriented architecture that has come about since 2014. Microservices is essentially when an application is made up of a number of loosely coupled services, or independent and contained software functions. This allows for each service within the application to be updated independently without reconfiguring the entire application, while still being able to communicate with the other services in the application and not affect the user experience. 
  • Event Driven Architecture Event driven architecture is a service-oriented architecture that is utilized in business technology where an “event” is key in the business’s function. An “event” is categorized as a significant change in state. For example, a shirt going from being “for sale” to “sold.” In event driven architecture, the communication of the event is translated through a series of loosely coupled systems to drive the functioning of the software. 

Cost of Service Oriented Architecture 

It is important to know because of service oriented architecture’s adaptability and innovative structure, it is 20 percent less expensive to implement and saves 50 percent of costs for the process of updating your company’s software than component-based software. 

However, it can be difficult to gauge the cost of designing or redesigning the architecture of your business IT because of the abstract nature of the work involved. It is important to include potential mistakes or roadblocks into your budget for shifting your company’s technological architecture to service oriented architecture. Here are factors you need to consider when creating a budget. 

  • Cost of service complexity First, you will need to estimate the complexity of the software functions required to achieve what your business requires from the technological applications you are designing. Knowing the complexity of the services within the architecture allows you to estimate a time frame for developing the services. 
  • Cost of data complexity Next, you need to analyze and assess the data involved in your enterprise’s technological processing and overall functioning, or essentially how many data components are meant to be processed. This also impacts the time and labor required to implement the architecture soundly. 
  • Cost of processing complexity Another factor to the developer’s time and labor will be creating the processes which run the data through or to the services. Depending on how complex the process is, this aspect of the software’s development takes the most time. 
  • Cost of enabling the technology Once the previous three aspects of the software have been developed, the software needs to be implemented successfully. This is where you must plan for any slip-ups or necessary re-adjustments after the software’s architectural foundations have been established, much like making tweaks after a test-run. 

Companies That Use Service Oriented Architecture 

Many companies these days have very complex software networks that have many different branches and components. Often successful companies utilize service oriented architecture in their technological make-up. These companies have access to a plethora of coders who have chosen the most cost-effective and time efficient architectural designs for their company’s technological landscape. These companies have been recognized for their technological achievements involving their utilization of service oriented architecture. Here are some companies that utilize service oriented architecture. 

  • Google 

  • eBay 

  • Wachovia Bank 

  • Amazon 

  • DreamWorks 

  • IBM 

  • Citigroup 

  • HP 

  • Harley Davidson 

  • OnStar 

  • Ameriprise Financial