Integration of software applications is a key aspect of digital modernization. Find out the benefits and how to achieve a smooth integration for your business.
The Integration of Software Applications: Benefits and How to Get Started
Integration of software applications can help organizations that still use monolithic legacy systems with the considerable challenges they face when embracing digital transformation.
New software and applications can now do everything, from automating repetitive tasks to offering real-time insights into operational efficiency. However, legacy systems often have fragmented architecture that makes it difficult, if not impossible, for them to work with these newer apps and software.
With new developments coming on the market every week, enterprise-level businesses with legacy systems risk being left behind by missing out on essential data that could help drive them forward.
Modernization is a necessity if you want to compete in today’s marketplace. The integration of software applications is a key aspect of this, allowing systems and networks to work together and enabling businesses to do better.
Let us take you through it.
What is application software integration?
How many different software applications does your business use? You might have different software for HR and payroll, logistics and warehousing applications, your CRM system, and so on. Even if they use the same datasets, these applications rarely work together in legacy systems.
Application software integration is the process of taking these separate programs and combining them into one unified system. The integration can include small, simple components or large and complex systems. Integrating these systems allows them to all operate from a single shared database.
Integration should be a coordinated process to ensure that you achieve your goal: a seamless connection between the separate parts. When it is done properly, the integration of software applications should result in increased operational efficiency and overall productivity—two factors that can benefit your organization.
Of course, this isn’t a simple process. Your different programs and applications may use different languages and have vastly differing architectures. This means an integration plan needs to be well thought out, identifying any potential issues as well as highlighting programs that can be easily integrated.
The benefits of integrating software applications
While better operational efficiency is attractive, it’s not the only benefit you can expect from the integration of software applications. The modernization of legacy systems—including integration—can be an expensive process, but it’s worth it for the many upsides.
Most organizations have many repetitive tasks, such as email marketing or data input, that can take staff away from more important jobs.
Program integration can allow you to streamline and automate workflows, controlling everything from a centralized point and freeing up the time and energy of employees for other tasks.
Every business needs good collaboration. For example, different teams need to be able to communicate with each other regardless of location. Applications that can’t “talk” to each other make this more difficult.
Luckily, software integration solutions bring everything together and enable staff to more easily communicate and collaborate with each other.
3. Better decision-making
Data collected in a centralized, cloud-based repository makes it easier to monitor business performance, both in real-time and in terms of different time periods, for example quarterly.
In turn, this makes it easier to identify patterns (both real and potential) so that you can make better business decisions and be prepared for both new opportunities and challenges.
4. Improved IT systems
Unwieldy legacy systems can create a lot of work for IT teams and make certain programs inaccessible to non-IT staff too.
An integration solution can reduce reliance on your IT teams, allowing them to focus on improving your infrastructure rather than simply keeping legacy systems running. It also gives you the opportunity to ensure that your solutions are accessible to all employees.
5. Lower costs
When applications are separate, you will often have higher costs for maintenance and upgrades. When all, or even most, of your programs are integrated, you can expect a lower annual outlay to service them.
6. Improved visibility
Software integration means you can remove silos, gain better visibility, and manage information more efficiently.
This helps managers improve their knowledge of what’s happening in different areas of the business and make better decisions for both short- and long-term operations.
How to choose the right integration solution for your needs
Once you’ve identified the need for an integration solution for your business, you need to choose the one best suited to your goals. Successful implementation results from proper planning, so what factors should you be thinking about?
Careful consideration and prioritization of your needs will help you pick the right software application integration solution for your enterprise.
Assess your business needs
The first step in planning is to have an understanding of your specific needs. Obviously, an eCommerce giant will have different requirements than a tech company.
Start by listing the various apps you use and identifying what you want to achieve from integration. You may want to retain your existing legacy system, but be aware that this could limit integrations now and in the future.
Consider user friendliness
Your primary goals may include improved efficiency and better accessibility. A user-friendly integration solution will help achieve both of these aims.
OpenLegacy offers an interface that is easy for even non-tech-savvy staff to use, helping to drive modernization and digital transformation.
Future-proofing and versatility
Modernizing legacy systems and integrating existing programs can be expensive, and you don’t want this expense to be repeated in the near future.
You can prevent this by choosing a versatile and future-proofed solution that will help you avoid vendor or cloud lock-in scenarios.
Think about scalability
Every business wants to grow, and with ever-increasing amounts of data in every industry, scalability is essential.
You don’t want to choose a solution that will no longer meet your needs once your company expands. Fortunately, OpenLegacy offers options that ensure any scalability needs are met.
Security and compliance
The sensitivity of data, as well as regulatory and compliance requirements, is an essential consideration.
Integration solutions need to be secure and meet your compliance needs. As OpenLegacy integrates with so many systems, you can be assured all security and regulatory requirements will be met.
Account for your budget
Pricing is always going to be important, but make sure to think of long-term costs as well as immediate expenditures. Saving a few thousand now may work out poorly in the future if the solution you choose doesn’t offer longer-term viability.
It’s worth looking at subscription models, such as those offered by OpenLegacy, as they can be upgraded in tandem with your business needs.
Experience smoother software application integrations with OpenLegacy
With so many software application integration solutions on the market, choosing one can feel overwhelming. So, why should you pick OpenLegacy?
OpenLegacy is one of the most efficient IaaS (integration as a service) platforms available today. It can efficiently generate APIs (application programming interfaces), even for organizations that operate legacy systems, which means you can quickly and simply deploy or create the digital services you need.
OpenLegacy also provides you with a fully-automated syntax production process, which allows you to modify existing legacy setups or create new backend systems. Importantly, it simplifies previously complex operations so that you can integrate the apps and programs you need without any hassle.
With so many businesses moving toward digital transformation, outdated legacy systems will inevitably leave you lagging behind your competitors. However, OpenLegacy can help you modernize and streamline your workflows with the integration of software applications, making your business sleeker and more efficient.
It’s a solution that can connect directly with any system, from legacy to modern digital, eliminating the need for extra tech layers. Businesses want an all-in-one solution, and OpenLegacy ticks all the boxes. Easily automate the processes you want for straightforward service creation and deployment along with easier cloud integration.
As a fantastic hybrid API integration platform, OpenLegacy makes it simple to extend your systems. It’s ideal for any type of organization, from finance and government to eCommerce and tech. Get in touch to take advantage of our offering today.
FAQs about the integration of software applications
What are the common approaches for integrating applications?
If you’re looking for enterprise application integration, there are typically two approaches to consider.
The first involves manually coding the relevant applications so they can communicate in a common language. This is the more complicated and time-consuming method. It also requires specialist IT and coding skills.
The second method is far simpler and quicker and involves using a software application integration solution, such as OpenLegacy, which completes the majority of the work for you without the need for coding. An integration solution will also offer greater scalability and be able to handle larger datasets.
How do you manage an application integration?
Once you’ve chosen your preferred solution, you still need to manage the integration process.
The four main parts of a well-managed integration are planning, design, selection of tech stacks, and implementation and testing.
A plan for the integration of software applications is essential to ensure the process goes smoothly.
IT staff or vendors can help you design your new integrated system, choose the correct tech stack by answering the question “What is iPaaS?”, and implement and test the solution to achieve a successful integration of your software applications.
We’d love to give you a demo.
Please leave us your details and we'll be in touch shortly