SOA and Business Process Design Driving System Development

Effective business process design and a well defined SOA based development platform are key elements in the effort to deliver a mission critical system for the City of Houston.  The City processes approximately 5,000 citations per day and adjudicates over 1.2 million court cases per year, which makes the Houston Municipal Courts (HCM) one of the largest fine-only based Court Systems in the United States.  There are no off-the-shelf software products that can satisfy HCM's requirements and the City has initiated a major project that will develop a custom application that automates high volume paper processing operations, schedules millions of events associated with Court operations, provides a high volume Point of Sales capability for handling thousand of "customers" each day, and enforces complex business rules over the life-cycle of cases.  The new System will have to integrate scanning technologies with document management tools, generate millions of electronic documents on an annual basis, capture electronic signatures, provide judges with the ability to process up to one-hundred cases per hour, streamline the check-out process for frustrated "customers", and  control over $50 million in "retail" sales.  The success of this project depends on the integration of process design and a Services Oriented Architecture.  Through 26 in-depth JAD sessions to define requirements, development of 250 detail process maps that define the new operating procedures, and development of over 140 Uses Cases, the City has defined the services required to drive the new System and is building the foundation for effective reuse of core services.