My first Service Specification Experience

I am currently involved in a SOA project and working on Service Specifications. Organization I am working for started their first steps towards a full blown SOA. Choice of an ESB has been made and Microsoft BizTalk Server it is. Next step is identifying and specifying services. That is the stage where I am involved now. It is quite an encouraging experience and I have support (guidance) from an excellent architect. Service identification is a process of determining, which services enterprises really need. Business will be leading in this and IT has to realize them and where alignment between comes into play. This is serious process to shorten gap between business and IT. All tough business is leading a strong focus on this side may result in services, where implementation considerations have not been taken into account and services that are too specific and therefore not reusable (one of the SOA Principles). The same risk is there when identification of services is focus on single business functions leading towards possible overlap of services and redundancy. Focus here is on identifying services with reusability in mind. This is something project I am in has its main focus on: Reusability. Linda Terlouw and others have written an excellent article about approaches towards identifying services. Also one of her latest posts concerns service catalog, an important artifact for consumers to discover services and determine whether or not they are useful (meet requirements). I am very excited to be working on service specifications and to have an opportunity to gain some more experience in SOA.