Are shrinking budgets good for SOA?

Fewer dollars for SOA means less chasing the hype and more getting things done in a practical and realistic manner

Who would have thought that if you spent less money you could actually do more? That seems to be the case with SOA. As budgets contract and SOA teams downsize, you would think that SOA projects would all be doom-a-gloom and lacking productivity. However, the opposite seems to be occurring.

The reality is, when SOA projects had huge budgets they spent more money and time chasing SOA "quick fixes." Now that there is just not enough dough to do anything silly, those working on service-oriented architecture are forced to do ... well ... architecture. Thus, we're moving from something that was more about chasing the hype to something that's more about getting things done in a practical and realistic manner.

[ What technologies can you not afford to cut in the current recession? InfoWorld reveals the top 5 spending priorities you can't compromise on. ]

Another issue is the focus on job security. These days when layoffs are more the rule than the exception, SOA teams are more focused on getting results that can be traced to the bottom line. Thus, there is more doing and less unproductive activities. Indeed, many SOA teams that can't prove their value are typically the first to go, as management focuses more on just keeping the lights on and less about IT improvement. Those that remain are very good at finding the ROI and executing toward it.

The fact of the matter is that SOA had, and in some cases still does, a lot of unproductive work surrounding it. Removing the resources has the affect of focusing the SOA teams on what's most important to the task, getting the fundamentals of SOA right the first time, and addressing the needs of the business.

Now just think of what we can do when the money begins to flow back into IT again.