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Service-oriented modeling is a strategy that is often employed to any situation calling for structuring or modeling the design, function, and operational processes involved with an activity. This modeling approach may be applied to the creation of a business model for a new company, developing a new software product, or even designing and implementing the construction of brick and mortar edifices. The essential concept behind service-oriented modeling is to create a model that fulfills the purposes of the intended project, both in terms of practical operation and providing a solid technological foundation for the ongoing use of the model created.
One of the easiest ways to understand service-oriented modeling is to consider the design of a technology platform for a small business. As part of the process, the modeling will involve identification of all the tasks that the platform will be called upon to perform, including inventory control, financial accounting, ordering, invoice creation and processing, and even maintaining sales and marketing databases. In order to create a platform that can accommodate all these functions, there is a need to make use of modeling language and processes that speak to the needs of the company but also are easy to interpret by the information technology personnel who design and manage the platform over the long-term. Doing so makes it easier for those professionals to use elements of various models to create something that works in a particular business environment, and that can be adapted and expanded as the need arises.
At its best, service-oriented modeling creates models that take into account all the processes that go into developing and maintaining a comprehensive and efficient design that provides all the functionality required by the business. All the typical modeling processes are used to initiate discovery of what is required, analysis of how to integrate functions with the best possible use of resources while also making the processes user-friendly, and even projecting outcomes by running simulations that help to identify weaknesses early on are part of the overall modeling process.
Service-oriented modeling is not a strategy that is limited to large companies. Mid-sized and even small companies with no more than a few employees can also benefit from this approach. By working with programmers and other information technology professionals, it is possible to develop working models that meet the needs of the business and empower users to make use of those models in a manner that saves time as well as money.
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