The problem with SPML still the same more than 10 years after the effort was started. Right now the choice is between home grown provisioning or bringing in a provisioning vendor. In the latter case the provisioning vendors are forced to absorb the pain of integrating to all the disparate provisioning targets (a pain I know all too well). Since the provisioning vendors make it all work, the customers don’t force the enterprise system vendors to add SPML interfaces.
Note that Nishant has this to say about Oracle:
Is SPML on life support? Not quite, judging from all the RFP requests that still ask for it to be supported. But it desperately needs some energy to be put behind it. And it needs to adapt to these new architectures, new use cases and the ecology of standards that is far out-pacing it. I believe Oracle (led by folks like Prateek Mishra) will be looking to take some leadership in the evolution of the standard. Let’s see if we can turn things around.
Great, I would love to see that happen. But Oracle has been involved in SPML from the beginning, but do you know what they haven’t done? Added an SPML service to to support the provisioning of Oracle DB accounts. Neither has IBM, Sun, or Microsoft with respect to their own DB products, even though they have all had involvement in the SPML standard over the years. It’s the same when you look at directories, email systems, etc.
We can talk about the standards or “pull models” all we want, but it takes two to Tango. Until the enterprise systems support a common interface of some kind, provisioning will still be as problematic as it was 10 years ago.