As most people still believe there is no single platform capable of meeting all of a modern businesses needs, the demand for an integration strategy persists. To scale properly in the modern era, your applications must be able to communicate without relying on a human to deliver or send the message. A well thought-out integration strategy may start with a single point-to-point integration, but as your business grows, there will come the point where you will be losing money if you do not implement a robust and organized integration platform.
Purchasing an integration platform is a large step, and should be considered a point of pride for your business. So how do you know you’re there? Finding that point may be different for each business, but there are at least four signs can that indicate you may need to make this jump. Let’s go through them.
The busy work is still piling up
No one likes busy work; unless you like mentally checking out as an employee or like leading an army of zombies as a manager. However, advancements in integration capabilities have made zombies obsolete! So if you’re finding you’re employees are burdened with many hours of mindless and perhaps tedious work that involves copying or moving any data from one application to another, it’s time to consider an integration platform.
You’re beginning to lose track of individual integration applications
One custom integration application might be easy for you and your employees to understand and maintain, but as you add them individually, there will be a whole new set of developers, consultants, business processes, and security risks to consider. These integrations may also not be built with future integrations in mind, creating a clunky and rigid data integration system over time. So if you feel like you’re in a web of outdated integration solutions and aren’t even sure who to call about it anymore, that’s a clear sign it’s time for an integration platform.
People always use the system as a scapegoat
If you are attempting to communicate cross-department with clunky and outdated integrations, you may begin to hear people use this lack of proper communication as an excuse. Vanessa can’t do payroll until the HR data comes through, but the third-party application is slow today…How can Justin ship the order if the integration between shipping and sales is down again? These little things add up, obviously in dollars, but also in your employee’s motivation. You should try not to frustrate employees with unreliable technology; no one has time for that!
You’re beginning to worry about security
Maybe when you just started off, you had a few employees, and under $100,000 in yearly revenue, you’re probably not a target in any hackers eyes. But since then you’ve grown to dozens of employees and millions in annual revenue. You now have tons of employee information and a nest egg to protect; it’s time to get real about security. Integrations if improperly secured our a great way in for even a non-savvy hacker or a rogue employee. Multiple integrations, built by different teams, over a period, could be a security nightmare! Integration platforms have stringent security protocols built-in, and limited information needs to be given to third-party consultants.