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Choosing a Delivery Strategy

To realize the strategic goals associated with service-oriented computing, carrying out a meaningful extent of top-down delivery is generally required. This does not necessarily mean that all possible up-front analysis be completed prior to service delivery.

Top-down requirements need to be weighed against an organization's tactical priorities. While some can define a comprehensive inventory blueprint in advance, others may only be able to create a high-level service blueprint before heading into the service design phase. Yet another approach is to carry out a full inventory analysis but reduce the scope and size of the planned inventory.

Alternative processes can also be considered, such as the meet-in-the-middle strategy (also known as agile delivery). This approach allows for an on-going analysis and definition of a service inventory blueprint, while high-priority services are delivered in advance. At a later point, after the analysis efforts have sufficiently progressed, services that have been previously deployed are revisited. If necessary, they are then redeveloped and brought in alignment with the revised blueprint.

Choosing a delivery approach is a critical decision point because it represents a decision an organization will usually need to live with for quite some time.