James Governor's Monkchips

Compliance Oriented Architecture: Feedback from Plumtree

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We got some good pushback from Plumtree on our COA report, but before i stick add it the blog, i should point to why its view is relevant.

Plumtree has begun to position itself as a platform for third party ISV applications. The first such is Handysoft Global’s Sarbanes Oxley accelerator. Although the solution is SOX focused, customers could potentially extend it other regulatory frameworks. United Technologies is the first customer, press released here.

Another compliance project Plumtree is working on–that isn’t SOX related!! is at British Land, a property company. Stamp Duty is a British Tax that requires reporting from multiple constituencies. It is a real drag as someone that recently bought a new apartment can attest– see this excerpt from the press release:
(Stamp Duty Land Tax) has necessitated completion of up to 105 questions over four forms supported by 37 pages of guidance notes – for all real estate related transactions. British Land has responded to this requirement by developing the entire process through the portal. Paper forms taking up to a day to complete for complex transactions can now be filed in as little as an hour by British Land’s panel of external law firms via the portal.

So what does Plumtree think of our COA topology and approach?

Simon Stevens, Regional Director of Northern Europe at Plumtree, fired over these thoughts:

The idea of a compliance-oriented architecture as a sub-species of a service oriented architecture is a good and interesting one. Obviously, from the Plumtree PoV we would say that 1) we should be listed as player in the retrieval, indexing, collaboration, and information integration sections; 2) when thinking about any kind of service oriented architecture, you also need to think about how and where it all comes together. What does the user see, what does he touch, and how do you build that most effectively. As the report points out, we don’t yet live in a world where you can willy-nilly string together an arbitrary group of services. But you can build applications that start to use a lot of these different services, and these applications need a common security and management model, user experience framework, search capabilities, and many other things that portals have traditionally provided.

Unsurprisingly, some of the vendors we have talked to feel we made ommisions in the report, or didn’t give enough credit where its due for functionality. To be frank the report is intended to look at an approach to compliance. Its not about any one vendor, but a method. Just as Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) is NOT a product, and anyone that tells you otherwise is a marketer.

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