Q: Do you see service-oriented architecture (SOA) reducing the need for the data warehouse (DW)? What benefits do you see the data warehouse still providing to companies moving to SOA?

Sid Adelman's Answer:

SOA in no way reduces the need for a data warehouse and the benefits you identified (you did identify benefits, didn't you?) before you spent a dime on hardware and software are still relevant.

Clay Rehm's Answer:

SOA is not a product (it is an architectural style), so even if a company moves to SOA, I believe it will need a DW component. Don't underestimate the need of processes that provide value and that currently work! Just because your organization is embarking on an enterprise effort such as SOA does not mean it will be successful or that it will be implemented the way it was designed.

Anne Marie Smith's Answer:

To date, most SOA efforts have centered around transaction systems, but data warehousing can benefit from SOA with the ability to join various actions (services) from different areas of the DW to create composite applications or common services. If you are planning to move to SOA and you have a data warehouse, don't forget to include the DW in your SOA planning! Services that are part of a DW: data extraction, transformation, loading, querying, updating, etc., should be part of the SOA from the start. This should make more comprehensive business intelligence possible, and could assist in the development of fully integrated SOA (why have extraction and loading routines in separate environments if they are essentially similar) but it does require forethought and some serious investigation in the SOA planning phase. Finally, there are few tools available now for this effort, but vendors are reportedly looking at the need for SOA-oriented tools and techniques to support data warehousing.

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