Tuesday, April 20th, 2010
Bali-headquartered company Mitrais, which undertakes outsourced software development for Australian companies, has mandated four key rules for achieving interoperable systems following its experiences with development of a major proprietary system.

The rules are most likely to yield the greatest benefits in organizations using best of breed, SaaS and/or B2B applications says Mitrais chief technology officer, Ken McClellan

For such applications Mitrais has now mandated some standard requirements when it undertakes a development project.

One such requirement is that for every bit of information that can be reviewed or entered online, there must be a web service that provides or consumes that information.

“For example, recently we completed a system in Microsoft .NET designed to interoperate with a Java based system.

“The application required that each system had to be able to stand alone and out of the box they had to talk to each other. The success of the application has led us to specify the following requirements to ensure the greatest flexibility possible,” he said.

  • every data entry screen must have an associated, discoverable Web Service
  • every lookup must have an associated, discoverable Web Service
  • major functions should be actionable via an associated discoverable Web Service
  • an XML standard should be identified and used along with other external standards as required

Interoperability, as defined on Wikipedia, is the capability of a product or system whose interfaces are fully disclosed, to interact and function with other products or systems without any access or implementation restrictions.

Mr. McClellan says that while the key to the industry-wide take-up of interoperable systems lies with end-user organizations establishing a business case that such systems reduce costs or increase revenues, software developers should not be sitting on their hands.

“If they don’t anticipate demand they may well be left behind in someone else’s dust,” he said.

So, what applications best lend themselves to interoperability?

Mr. McClellan says one of the more common ones would be for a sales group using Salesforce.com but needing to get the sales recorded back at the home office in an ERP system or even possibly another SaaS based system such as SAP’s Business ByDesign.

He contends interoperability is becoming a check box item more and more when evaluating systems.

“But we still see many instances where the organization selling the product claims they will become interoperable to a standard when their customers demand it - so it is not universal yet.

“While there are some early adopters, there is no widespread mandating of interoperable systems specifications, with the exception of some functions like electronic reporting of securities and exchange transactions at national government level,” Mr. McClellan says.

Contact Profile


Mitrais was established in 2000 to achieve excellence in software development using Indonesia as a base of operations. Its objective is to be the leading near shore provider of application development services to the Australian IT industry and a significant player in other countries. Mitrais is a Microsoft Gold Certified developer, an Oracle Partner and has also certified products in SAP NetWeaver. In 2004 the company entered the health Industry, developing the Mitrais Medical Suite which it sells globally. In 2007 it absorbed Mincom Indoservices to extend its operations into the sale and support of mining software (in particular from Mincom) in Indonesia. With offices in Bali, Jakarta, Singapore and Sydney, Mitrais has more than 100 clients and employs more than 300 staff. For further information visit www.mitrais.com
David Magson
P: 1100 62 361 75025
M: 1100 62 815 5800 1004
W: www.mitrais.com.au


interoperable systems, Saas, B2B, Web Services



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