Do we really understand what ESA is all about, the reason this question came to my mind was that I have heard different people giving different definitions to ESA / SOA. Some say its all about abstracting your technical implementations, some say its all about inter-operability, some say its all about using some set of standards over internet. What I have observed that is this definition changes with the role that person is playing. Now, if we closely look at these definitions each of them are right in their own context. Irrespective of what one might define ESA as, its bound to give us the following benefits. 1. Ease of use of the business application, there by increasing the user productivity. 2. New business process can be easily integrated with the new ones. 3. Reduce the human errors there by the costs. Now, if we leave the benefits apart, the first question that comes to most of us is, how do I identify if there is ESA oppurtunity in my landscape. If yes, how do I identify the same. On the contrary to ESA, the questions that might arise, do I really need ESA. I am able to automate my business process using XI (XI is used for the integrating business applications). So, what is the need for the ESA in my case. Let us take at each of these a little in detail.