SOA to Drive IT Infrastructure New Year

As a customer's overall experience becomes the biggest driver of profit growth, corporate technology departments increasingly look to service-oriented architecture technologies to make the entire organization flexible and market-centric, according to the results of a survey of almost 150 participants attending the recent Siebel Customer World conference. According to the survey conducted by Capgemini U.S., almost half of enterprises currently use SOA technologies, and more than seven in 10 plan on using these technologies in the near future. SOA also emerged as the number-one driver of corporate IT infrastructure investments in 2006 for nearly half of respondents (44 percent), compared to smaller percentages for business intelligence (35 percent) and outsourcing/labor arbitrage (25 percent).

At Siebel Customer World, the top three trends in customer relationship management mentioned by respondents are the return of rework of previous CRM implementations (40 percent), focus on process reengineering (27 percent) and return of custom development (18 percent). Respondents were four times as likely to point to improvements in the customer experience (63 percent) driving future profits than competing on price to increase margins (only 15 percent).

"This survey demonstrates that the emergence of service-oriented enterprises will facilitate collaboration between all stakeholders in a way that redefines the enterprise as being truly 'open' for business," says Izzy Franco, global customer relationship management leader for Capgemini. "Rapid adoption of open standards and SOA technologies will drive the transformation of customer relationship management and IT in general while creating the service-oriented enterprises of tomorrow. These technologies will unleash the full potential for applications, just as the Web unleashed the awesome power of connectivity."