IBM Aims to Ease SOA Implementation

The company's new SOMA service will give customers greater visibility into their business processes and systems.

IBM has come up with a new service offering to help customers better connect their business goals with their technical resources.

Known as Service Oriented Modeling and Architecture, or SOMA, the new service, announced Wednesday, will be a service offering from IBM Global Services (IGS) to help enterprise customers "bridge the gap between business and technology," said Michael Liebow, vice president of Web services at IGS in Armonk, N.Y.

Essentially, through SOMA IBM will help customers implement service-oriented architectures that can transform enterprises to on-demand businesses, Liebow said. An SOA is basically a collection of services that communicate with and collaborate with each other.

"SOMA will fill out a portfolio of service offerings we have to help clients round out service-oriented architectures," he said.

The SOMA service will be delivered via the Business Consulting Services arm of IGS. IBM will work to give customers greater visibility into their business processes and systems, Liebow said. The SOMA service involves BPM (business process modeling) and CBM (component business modeling), he said.

"What SOMA does is picks up where CBM leaves off," Liebow said. Once youve identified an area for improvement, SOMA lets you find those processes and create services out of them. It allows you to leverage that process as a service, and then align those services with underlying IT."

Indeed, SOMA delivers a focused approach to implementing SOAs and it builds on BPM by taking the targeted goals of BPM and ensuring that they are implemented, Liebow said.

Meanwhile, IBM will employ some of its existing tools, as well as new tools under development, to facilitate the SOMA process, Liebow said.

"Part of the tooling is based on WebSphere Business Integration Modeler," he said. "And were developing a lot of different assets that link into WBI." SOMA leverages tooling from IBMs Software Group and from IBM Research, he said.

/zimages/4/28571.gifClick here to read about IBMs new SOA Management Practice.

In addition, because the approach to building SOAs "is very similar [from] industry to industry, … we are looking at common service components across industries," Liebow said.

IBM developed the SOMA service over the last three years while working with clients on best practices.

"Weve been working with a variety of different industries," he said.

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