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Business Quality Messaging

Business Quality Messaging (BQM) is providing a new way to run Business-Critical applications on Corporate Intranets

Business Quality Messaging enables interoperable, off-the-shelf, business applications to run reliably on corporate networks by incorporating transactional messaging capabilities.

Two Approaches to Messaging

Today's computing world encompasses two very different approaches to electronic messaging:
Interpersonal Messaging
Interpersonal messaging has become the glue that connects the modern business enterprise and is an almost universal part of the corporate desktop.

According to estimates, there are already more than 80 million e-mail boxes in use in the corporate world, along with another 25 million personal mailboxes. Globally, thousands more e-mail boxes are being added daily with no end in sight.

Interpersonal messaging is transitioning to the client/server model, and both e-mail and messaging-enabled productivity applications such as workflow and calendaring tools are widely available in cost-effective, off-the-shelf applications.

E-mail uses 'best-efforts' delivery methods. It can provide delivery receipts, but lacks a mechanism for ensuring that attachments are delivered end-to-end, intact and unchanged. This is particularly true when extending beyond local networks to corporate and wide-area networks.

Transactional Messaging
Transactional messaging evolved from the mainframe world and is used by the majority of distributed, business-critical applications. Its strength is its highly reliable message delivery, which makes it suitable to run transaction-oriented tasks such as payroll transfers and order processing.

Often based on message-oriented middleware (MOM), transactional messaging uses techniques such as message queuing to ensure end-to-end message delivery.

Transactional messaging is primarily used within corporations to integrate custom business applications on heterogeneous platforms. Typical installations are highly customized to their individual corporate needs.

BQM: Bringing the Two Worlds Together
Business Quality Messaging (BQM) represents the convergence of transactional and interpersonal messaging.

BQM can be thought of as highly reliable, messaging-oriented middleware for the corporate network environment.

Like traditional transaction-oriented messaging technologies, BQM uses messaging-oriented middleware to ensure reliable message delivery between applications.

Like e-mail, BQM is integrated with shrink-wrapped applications for ease of deployment, rather than being installed separately and customized for each site.

High-level applications programming interfaces (APIs) make it possible for independent software vendors (ISVs) to integrate BQM into their applications with minimal effort.

Convergence of Transactional and Interpersonal Messaging BQM-enabled solutions:

  • Provide reliable, end-to-end delivery of messages between applications.
  • Run on standard TCP/IP networks.
  • Are easily deployed on existing corporate networks.
  • Are implemented by developers using industry-standard APIs.
  • Are an integrated feature of off-the-shelf applications.

Products that meet the definition of BQM are now beginning to appear on the market. For example, IBM's recently announced MQWare* uses the same messaging and queuing technology as the company's market-leading MQSeries software to deliver reliable, low-cost, easy-to-install messaging for servers on corporate networks.

Opportunity Enabler
BQM is an opportunity enabler. Like the World Wide Web, it opens the door to new ways of doing things. In this case, BQM enables new ways of running applications over corporate networks, offering both new market opportunities for vendors and new capabilities for businesses.

The emergence of transactional messaging capabilities within volume applications will significantly improve the reach of intranet-based applications and the quality of business communications.

The availability of proven, highly reliable messaging middleware in the corporate network environment will spur the rapid development of new productivity and business-critical applications, as well as new transaction processing applications.

Tasks such as making travel arrangements, scheduling conference rooms and filing expense reports, which are currently time-consuming chores handled by phone and fax, will be managed electronically - and they will be manageable across the enterprise, rather than simply at the workgroup level.

Vendors who move quickly to develop BQM-capable applications will enjoy the benefits of being in on the ground floor of a rapidly emerging technology.

The Benefits of BQM
Applications that can benefit from BQM include enterprise e-mail and e-mail-based applications, calendar/scheduling, document management, line-of-business applications, workflow, supply chain management applications and fax routers.

For corporate environments, BQM provides confidence that business-critical applications deliver messages reliably, thus offering the ability to deploy business-critical applications on cost-effective, high-volume platforms.

The benefits of BQM in the corporate network environment include increased network efficiency, greater use of the existing infrastructure, lower operational costs and improved productivity for business processes carried out or aided by distributed applications.

While focused primarily on corporate networks, BQM can also enable e-commerce applications such as supply-chain management to run over the Internet, extending the opportunities for business-to-business collaborations and virtual corporations.

As with software developers, businesses that are quick to employ BQM-enabled products stand to gain a significant competitive advantage.

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