Over the last few years SOA has been a hot topic lending it to be abused by many that have no understanding of the concept. In my opinion, one of the largest issues facing SOA is the lack of understanding and experience implementing SOA by business and IT alike. I just recently deployed a new web services that is called by multiple service clients. Would you call this SOA because it is a web service that can be called by any requesting client? In my opinion, this is not SOA; instead it is Just Another Web Service (JAWS). Just because a company creates a web service does not mean that they are using SOA, in fact it only means that they are using a web service.
SOA is an architectural style that focuses on the design of systems based on the consumer and providers thorough the use of contracts. With this approach SOA needs to be applied for the top down in order for it to reach its full potential. In the case of the web service, the service is just a small part of the entire system that is reusable and has the flexibility to change.
In order for a company in this case to move towards SOA then they need to define business processes that can be shared through the use of reusable software and loose coupling. Once the company’s thought and development process change to address changes in this manner they can start to become more SOA.