The efficiency of every busy restaurant is directly impacted by the competency of its waiter. Shuttling between the kitchen and his table assignments, he has to give each table the time it needs (but never more) to decide on food, note multiple orders accurately and of course time appetizers, drinks and dessert so everyone at each table is enjoying the right course at the right moment. The pickier among us add another layer of complexity: we like our martinis only stirred and never shaken, the steak just so, our wines perfectly decanted. Needless to say the margin of error cannot be too large and the service is expected to come with a smile. In many ways the demands placed on the waiter are very analogous to what the typical leasing company expects from its lease management systems:
Document Management has to ensure that all legal considerations are addressed;
Suddenly, waiting tables doesn't seem to be so bad, especially considering that the typical challenges of running a leasing company are made more complex because its underlying systems work as disconnected information and process silos.
While these systems may not be short on overall functionality, they do not effectively communicate with each other; often times, critical applications work independent of one another even though the business functions they support do not. At best rigid integration mechanisms may bring some together and at worst manual intervention may be the only available band-aid. Indeed, the reality is that no lease management system, however comprehensive, can ideally meet every last need of running a leasing business.In embracing this reality then, approaching design such that applications are built to be communication-ready is certainly an idea worth considering. This is exactly what the Services Oriented Architecture (SOA) approach to designing leasing software brings to the table.