Though the demands on enterprise IT departments increases to accommodate new business opportunities and challenges, it is often difficult to justify funding for infrastructure projects. Meeting those challenges will be faster and easier if IT can build upon a solid foundation of integration. Consider Web services, which provide a powerful platform-neutral interface for extending applications to the Web, to other applications, and to outside partners and customers. Indeed, integration provides a strong and secure platform for both exposing and consuming Web services with legacy applications, and it can also provide an orchestration layer for managing Web services from newer software. Even organizations that have not made the move to Web services can benefit from planning for their eventual adoption.
As IT and corporate management prepare their budgets and investment priorities, an investment in extending existing applications via integration should be carefully considered; the return on investment may be sooner than you think.