Mr Baseline’s EAI Crash Course – Part IV

Roles and Organization

Defining a number of roles, and delineating their responsibilities, is a crucial part of any successful software development effort. Baseline defines a detailed process for producing deployable solution packages, and identifies a number of roles. Having clear demarcation lines between the roles ensures a concept know as Separation of Duties.

As an example, the project team involved in producing a solution package is never allowed access to either QA (acceptance test) or production environments. This means that the people responsible for producing the code are physically unable to put it into production. Instead, a well defined process of handing the solution package over to the operations staff is defined in Baseline. After verifying the completeness and quality of the package, operations personnel are then responsible for deploying it.

IBM WebSphere and Software Components

Although Baseline is not tied to any specific ESB software vendor, we at Zystems currently work exclusively with IBM WebSphere business integration software, making us the leading consultancy outfit in this niche in Northern Europe. Comprehensive as it may be, WebSphere business integration software still lacks certain features, often involving small subsets of large, expensive WebSphere packages. Therefore, we also provide a number of software components complementing IBM WebSphere offerings.

Examples include various adapters to connect applications to the ESB; a testing tool called Testline, used to build automated test suites for unit and regression tests; and a transaction tracking application called Baseline Track & Trace, enabling complete transactions to be tracked through the ESB and searched using logical identifiers, such as order numbers or article numbers.

In the next post…

…I’ll talk about the Baseline Start-kit, which is our methodology for kick-starting a company’s introduction of an ESB.

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