System Integration Basics: Don’t Boil the Ocean

Systems integration isn’t a hot new trend. Enabling systems to talk with one another has been around for decades, but the immediate need for effective system integration solutions is rapidly growing. So much so that research released just this week projects the integration market to reach $393.10 billion by 2020.

 

Massive technology advancements – especially around mobile, cloud and social – have disrupted IT environments and changed the way we work.

 

Gone are the days of endlessly hunting and gathering information from multiple systems across various functions of the organization. That method is simply no longer acceptable. Business leaders need information and data when and where they want it to make important business decisions. Without system integration, none of this is possible.

 

At the most basic level, system integration enables quick, fluid integration of various systems, services, processes, devices, and information to enhance, optimize and accelerate business performance. It alleviates the headache of how businesses can access and analyze information.

 

Think about this. System integration allows a manufacturing company to deliver real-time order, shipping and payment information to their customers and customer support teams. Taking it a step further, this organization can also automate and accelerate order processing by linking product information, inventory, credit approvals, tax, shipping information and customer history within their e-commerce platform. Business leaders can access all of that information to understand what is and isn’t working, and address challenge areas and improve upon their success, because they have a holistic view of the entire process.

 

In 2016, that seems like a no brainer. Why wouldn’t all of those systems naturally integrate and talk to each other? I can easily log onto Amazon and pre-order Chrissy Teigen’s new cookbook and have it delivered to my front door the day it’s made publically available, with the ability to check the status of the order at any point along the way. As a consumer, this is what I expect.

 

The truth of the matter is, what’s happening on the backend to make all these applications, technology, data and processes run smoothly together isn’t that simple. It’s actually quite messy and complicated. Hence the high growth potential the system integration market analysts are forecasting over the next four years.

 

This is just one example of the millions of different ways system integration helps organizations improve the quality and efficiency of services. With a strategic approach to system integration, businesses can make smarter business decisions based on a complete view of information. Redundancies and overcomplicated processes can be identified and eliminated, reducing long-term costs over time.

 

When it comes to system integration, don’t boil the ocean. Think about what you are trying to achieve and what you need in order to realize those outcomes. Ask yourself what are the benefits and risks of integrating systems? And, what key players need to be involved in order to make these changes happen as smoothly as possible?

 

Like I said before, the system integration market is booming, and I’m just scratching at the surface of the basics of the complexities surrounding system integration. If you’re interested in learning more about how VIP can help your organization address your disparate applications, platforms and data challenges, drop us a note below and we’ll be in touch.

 

P.S. Stay tuned! We have a lot more tips and insights on how to address your business challenges coming soon on the VIP blog!

 

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