Digital Integration has been saved
Unlocking the value of businesses through APIs
We live in a digital world. An explosion of new digital initiatives occurs within enterprises to support fast changes in customers’ desires and needs. This has led to the expansion of IT landscapes and an exponential growth in endpoints that need to be connected. Facing these modern challenges, a traditional integration mindset does not suffice.
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The rapid adoption of technology-led innovation is disrupting traditional business models in nearly every industry. For example, the retail industry needs to provide seamless customer experience across multiple channels. The airline industry is keeping up with the needs of the digital traveler who is always connected. The public sector needs to meet changing regulations fast. And financial institutions face disruption while continuously providing secure payment services.
This has led to the expansion of IT landscapes of enterprises and an exponential growth in endpoints that need to be connected. As companies increasingly pursue a best-of-breed application landscape architecture, more and more systems and applications are added. The ability to integrate IT systems to work together seamlessly across multiple functions of the business has become key to the success of every organization.
What is integration?
Integration is the process of connecting multiple enterprise systems, devices, or applications to work as a whole and share information. It manages the diversity and heterogeneity of application ecosystems by orchestrating, translating, and enabling data exchange. This allows companies to make the most of their data. Regardless of how it was collected, where it is stored or in what format.
IT integration challenges
IT integration has been known to be crucial within enterprise landscapes for decades. However, integration is often perceived as intangible and only comes as an afterthought of enterprise system implementation. With complex technical languages and protocols, a lack of management buy-in, and a misalignment between business and IT, integration has often been pushed aside for faster, but less-sustainable, alternatives. However, this traditional integration mindset does not suffice in face of modern challenges that enterprises now face:
- Infrastructure as a Service: The barriers to entry for both local and global markets have reduced dramatically as the rapid adoption of the cloud, particularly Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), has made access to IT inexpensive and massively scalable. This has allowed for many new software vendors to enter the market, leading to more systems to be added to IT landscapes of organizations to support business processes.
- Online channels: The global adoption of online channels, including social media and ubiquitous messaging, has redefined customer, reach, engagement, distribution, and customer service. Organizations respond to customer needs by developing new applications, but often insufficiently take the ecosystem in which these applications will live into consideration. Enterprises now need to cater to a much wider audience with their integration capabilities than ever before.
- Coherence in customer experiences: The growth of integration of connected endpoints of consumer processes across multiple enterprises, industries, and functions have led to consumers getting used to a certain level of coherence in their customer experiences. This leads to an increased need for integration within companies to stay at customers’ top of mind.
- Globalization: Globalization requires companies to both innovate with new products and at the same time become low-cost operators to sustain market position. This has resulted in an urgent need of companies to innovate to avoid disruption through integration.
- Access to data without IT: Many more people within organizations need access to data, digital capabilities, and resources. And increasingly, they need to build without the direct help of IT. As access and integration of data becomes crucial, organizations need a strategy to find the right balance between giving users access to their data and at the same time protect valuable data. Federated access and IT security become more important.
Integration has become a strategic topic and organizations now realize that it is at the heart of enabling digital transformation. There are many steps ahead to truly transform organizations into digital and composable enterprises. A challenge that we are more than happy to take on at Deloitte Digital Integration!