Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA) is an approach to organizing IT resources to better meet the changing needs of the business. While many organizations are somewhere on their SOA roadmaps, many such organizations face challenges when planning the underlying infrastructure that will support their SOA implementation. One reason for this challenge is that there are three core infrastructure areas that are jointly essential to the success of separate, but overlapping SOA effort: governance, quality, and management.
Governance means creating, communicating, and enforcing the policies that apply to the behavior of IT and its users. Quality is a measure of how well working systems meet the needs of the business. Management focuses on how well those systems meet performance, security, and other non-functional requirements for working software. In the context of SOA, however, these three sets of capabilities begin to merge.
To provide the business agility benefit that is the core business motivation for many SOA initiatives, governance, quality, and management need not only apply to the design time and run time phases that traditional software projects exhibit. In addition, SOA requires these capabilities apply to the change time phase as well, where organizations reconfigure and recompose Services to meet changing business needs. As a result, the governance, quality, and management challenges that SOA presents go beyond traditional IT concerns.