Microsoft sees a similar approach of federating applications as services, with a central core of mission-critical, back-office applications acting as the core platform. The data architecture and the master data management (MDM) must be separate from any single application, said Tim OBrien, director of the Platform Strategy Group at Microsoft. Instead, you would federate metadata through some back end with applications interacting as a mesh in an SOA approach.
Still, the question remains as to whose architecture, the enterprises or the vendors, forms basis of the SOA platform. Gartners Desisto said that vendors ultimately hold the key to managing integration among SaaS applications and suites.
What IT can do is insist on integration requirements and service levels in their contracts to push vendors towards better integration with competitors and other domains. Otherwise, vendors will act out of their self-interest.