What is Software Integration
Integration is a significant part of business process automation because it is always required.
In the course of work, businesses use a large number of different programs and services through which data passes. Under different circumstances, exchanging data quickly and easily between different configurations becomes necessary. However, it often causes inconvenience because these programs often fail to overlap with each other. Integration of services is about the automation of all elements of the company’s infrastructure, which increases the efficiency of the systems.
The software integration process deserves special attention, as it can unite the work of different company divisions and automate the work process.
Integration often means combining heterogeneous web products or data from different sources in a unified form with the possibility of further processing. When integrating other software solutions, it is necessary to understand their functionality well. It brings us to the fact that we have two directions of software implementation: custom and generic (iPaaS).
Integration is a part (sometimes a private case) of software implementation. And here, as for any other software implementation work, testing by a programmer, then by a consultant personally, and various testing options together with the users is required.
iPaaS as a Quick End-to-end Solution
The key tasks of software integration are to improve the quality and speed of the company and increase the business’s economic efficiency. There is a nuance in solving them; in particular, if the tasks are done correctly, everything is set up correctly and works well, it is usually not paid attention to. However, if there is no interaction between the various systems, it will lead to trouble in the form of delivery delays, followed by fines. The whole paradox may lie in the fact that, in this case, each system separately will work fine and perform its functions in total.
When a company is ready to embrace software integration, it can choose one of two things: develop the system, customize it, or use an off-the-shelf iPaaS solution.
The IPaaS platform simplifies the adoption process, reduces development costs and resource consumption, and accelerates time to adoption.
iPaaS as a solution has some features of its own:
- iPaaS uses cloud-based technology.
- Customers can use iPaaS without turning to IT experts, thanks to built-in technology.
- Data is delivered to self-service and business intelligence tools.
- Contact information is integrated into a marketing automation platform or CMS.
- Secure data is shared across partner networks.
- iPaaS easily integrates with on-premises virtual architecture or platforms such as AWS, Google Cloud, Microsoft Azure, Salesforce, etc.
Software Integration Benefits for Business
With the right tasking and implementation, business benefits from software integration services. This solution is scalable and can accommodate the increased volume of data from one to another environment. In addition, it supports real-time integration to minimize disruption, providing customers with an improved overall experience.
Businesses benefit from the following:
- Reliable movement, storage, analysis, and use of data.
- Automation of routine tasks and increased productivity.
- Quality business decisions are based on processed data.
- Data security.
- Improved customer service.
- Profit growth and company scalability.
Things to Consider While Integrating Software
Successful integration planning efforts must cover a wide range of tasks so that the initiative meets all specific business requirements. In addition, it will create unique and new value for the customer or end user.
An integration solution needs to be easy to learn and easy to administer. A system should be flexible and highly adaptable to evolving business requirements. The ability to support software integration at the business process level, not just at the data level, must exist. The solution must support end-to-end business processes with different timing characteristics. Cross-platform interoperability must be provided. Finally, the solution requires high security, reliability, fault tolerance, and scalability indicators.
Gather requirements and specifications
If a company uses certain disparate programs, it is necessary to analyze the pains of their incompatibility, collect the requirements for the integration system. Literally, managers should conduct employee surveys to form requirements. This way they will have a clear idea of how the programs are used, what they are for, what data they collect, why they are effective, and what prevents them from being even more productive.
Plan the architecture
Based on the information gained, you can begin planning the integration architecture. At this stage, the team details the tools needed.
Build the system
This is usually the longest period of change. It implies a choice between off-the-shelf solutions or development from scratch. Here each company must proceed with its own requirements and capabilities. However, the matter does not end with the integration itself. To understand its effectiveness, as well as the bottlenecks, the team must use it.
Test the system
On a regular basis, the team must keep track of bugs and communicate with developers. Most of the flaws or issues that were not anticipated before pop up in the operation process. Rapid identification of faults will allow to improve the system in time and prevent failures.
About the author:
Janet Polson is a graduate of George Washington University in International business. She is an unspoken expert in the study of science and philosophy. Janet is also a blogger, author of tech articles and she works as business analyst.