Select and Implement an ESB Solution

Vendor Evaluation


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Your Challenge

  • Point-to-point integrations create a tangle of webs and interfaces that are difficult to manage and can be easily broken.
  • As the number of integration connections continue to grow for an organization, traditional point-to-point integrations will become increasingly expensive to create and maintain.
  • With the increasing focus on SOA, and the growing connectivity and messaging requirements expressed by the business, IT departments require an integration solution that is scalable and highly flexible.

Our Advice

Critical Insight

  • Integration middleware, namely, Enterprise Service Buses (ESBs), provide a means to streamline application integration by serving as a central connection point. 
  • The ESB market is a mature space, with differentiation focused around architecture and deployment models, rather than out-of-the-box functionality.
  • ESBs sit deep within an organization’s application environment, making the right vendor selection and a well-designed implementation critical to the performance of the entire environment. 
  • Help make the case for an ESB by including it as part of a larger, high profile IT or business initiative. 

Impact and Result

  • Before proceeding with an ESB implementation, evaluate your integration environment and identify the different integration patterns and requirements that you will have for your implemented solution. 
  • Select your ESB considering the environment you will have tomorrow, not just the requirements you have today. More and more vendors are moving to the cloud, and are including robust iPaaS solutions that provide strong data and application integration functionality. 


  • Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center
  • Gamma Dynacare
  • Suva
  • One other anonymous contributor

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Get to Action

Start here – read the Executive Brief

Read our concise Executive Brief to find out why you should select and implement an ESB solution, review Info-Tech’s methodology, and understand the four ways we can support you in completing this project.

  1. Launch the ESB project and collect requirements

    Create a plan for selecting an ESB solution considering the benefits the technology can provide for the business and the needs of the integration environment.

  2. Select an ESB solution

    Evaluate Info-Tech’s ESB Vendor Landscape and use the information as a guide for evaluating a vendor shortlist and selecting a best-fit ESB solution.

  3. Plan the ESB implementation

    Create a plan for implementing the selected ESB tool.

Guided Implementation icon Guided Implementation

This guided implementation is an eight call advisory process.

    Guided Implementation #1 - Launch the ESB selection project

  • Call #1: Identify your fit for ESB technology and create a procurement project plan.

  • Call #2: Conduct an inventory assessment of your integration environment.

  • Call #3: Create an architectural framework for future ESB.

  • Guided Implementation #2 - Select an ESB solution

  • Call #1: Review the ESB Vendor Landscape.

  • Call #2: Discuss evaluation results.

  • Call #3: Conduct a contract review

  • Guided Implementation #3 - Plan the ESB implementation

  • Call #1: Create an implementation plan.

  • Call #2: Identify the oversight and maintenance plan for your ESB solution.

Onsite Workshop

Module 1: Launch an ESB Selection Project

The Purpose

  • Identify the benefits and fit for ESB technology for the organization.
  • Create the project plan for an ESB selection project.
  • Conduct an inventory of the organization’s integration environment.
  • Evaluate architecture needs and make critical architecture decisions.
  • Identify ESB and integration use cases for the organization.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Objectives for an ESB solution.
  • Case for an investment in ESB technology.
  • Project plan.
  • Identification of roles and responsibilities.
  • Mapping of integrations and documentation of services.
  • Creation of architecture and governance guiding principles for an ESB.
  • Architecture Reference Model.
  • Identification of ESB use cases. 

Activities: Outputs:
1.1 Plan the steps and components of an ESB procurement project
  • Completed project plan ready for business approval
1.2 Evaluate the integration environment of the organization
  • Evaluated and documented integration environment
1.3 Make critical architecture decisions
  • Documented architecture decisions
1.4 Model a reference architecture
  • Completion of a product-neutral reference architecture
1.5 Evaluate ESB use cases
  • Identified fit for ESB use cases

Module 2: Plan the Procurement and Implementation Process

The Purpose

  • Review the ESB Vendor Landscape vendor profiles and performance.
  • Take the information from your inventory assessment and architecture evaluation to create the requirements for your ESB RFP and evaluation process. 

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Strong understanding of the ESB market (vendor offerings and functionality).
  • Requirements package that aligns with the business’s environment and future needs. 

Activities: Outputs:
2.1 Evaluate the ESB market
  • Vendor shortlist
2.2 Identify the business’s ESB requirements
  • ESB requirements package
2.3 Plan next steps in the procurement process
  • Framework for evaluating ESB vendors

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Onsite Workshops offer an easy way to accelerate your project. If you are unable to do the project yourself, and a Guided Implementation isn’t enough, we offer low-cost onsite delivery of our Project Workshops. We take you through every phase of your project and ensure that you have a road map in place to complete your project successfully.

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Search Code: 73480
Published: February 7, 2014
Last Revised: June 19, 2015

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