Why iPaaS is the answer to integration challenges

As businesses amass a glut of tools across departments, iPaaS is helping them integrate in their quest for automation.
29 August 2019

Integrating the automation software used by different departments will ensure data gets transferred seamlessly across each other. Source: Shutterstock

Wide access to today’s business apps today and their ease of use means departments can deploy them without IT teams ever getting involved. 

Tools exist now to make every facet of business more efficient, whether it’s sales CRM, marketing automation, or in HR– every function can access the software and programs they need with little technical knowledge required.

For businesses at large, however, this can create a glut of various tools, creating increasing volumes of siloed data that can essentially hinder the smooth exchange of information across a business. As this complexity increases– and with it, greater need for manual processes– an automation strategy can provide a critical solution.

Connecting disparate applications and the data generated from them, the process of integration is central to an automation strategy. This is not a new concept, but current approaches often rely on addressing the need only when it’s at its most pressing.

Common forms of integration

Currently, there are three common ways that businesses are integrating software.

# 1 | DIY integrations

Leveraging code and APIs, powerful custom integration solutions can be built by the IT departments. But building this is extremely time consuming and requires a variety of tech resources and expertise to be implemented.

Building these solutions requires critical functions to be present like handling errors and guaranteed data delivery. It’s also highly sensitive to process changes too, requiring meticulous maintenance by trained technical staff. 

# 2 | Native integration (built-in)

Native integration often arrives with the software itself, allowing it to be connected with other commonly-used tools. 

It’s often introduced as a value-added service to help push the automation software. Most marketing automation software pairs up with Saleforce to help transfer data into a CRM, for example. However, these value-added software are not customized, so it can be inflexible in certain cases.

# 3 | Point-to-Point (P2P) connectors

At the start, these connectors may appear to be cost-friendly and easy to use, but now that there are thousands of cloud apps in circulation, developing integrations for every one used is no easy task. These connectors are prebuilt and they are limited in terms of usage scope and often lack flexibility to handle the more complex of use cases. 

How can iPaaS help?

Technical teams can’t feasibly keep up with custom integrations every time the business adopts a new tool– or existing integrations need modifying. Staff departures, customer expectations, and fluctuating demand for certain tools; all of this results in constantly changing needs across the company  as processes becomes more automated. 

As such, under-resourced IT teams are increasingly looking to make the integration management of new tools the role of the end-user.

This need is seeing the rise of Integration-Platform-as-a-Service (iPaaS) software, which can standardize how applications are added to an organization– IPaaS solutions can make process automation and moving transactional data easier from the point of deployment. 

This kind of technology is proving a fundamental aid as businesses automate their operations in order to keep pace with customer expectations and competitors in their space. IPaaS has a core role to play in tying together a growing multitude of applications to ensure they are all working in concert, as integration becomes a more frequent, ongoing necessity.

With step-by-step processes, it guides even the least tech-savvy users to create and manage powerful integration without needing help from experts, saving IT staff time for projects that drive bottom-line revenue, and allowing for efficiency and productivity gains to be made as soon as possible. 

Playing an important part in business today, automation ensures operational success as businesses get increasingly connected and competitive. Integrating tools efficiently is crucial to ensure data between all departments are shared efficiently, and iPaaS is the best way to go about it.