Do you have content gaps? If so, you need application integration to ensure you get all the information and details you need to avoid gaps and blind spots in your company's business and data management approach. If you've yet to consider application integration, now is the time to learn why and how to get this essential feature that helps propel daily processes and decisions that can propel businesses to greater success even in a competitive market.

Table of Contents: 

  1. What Is Application Integration?
  2. How Is Application Integration Beneficial?
  3. Do You Need Application Integration? 
  4. How Can Help

What is Application Integration?

Put simply; application integration is a way to connect all of your existing apps so that you can manage business flows and access data across the board. If you have multiple independently designed applications that are essential to your daily business, you'll want to take advantage of the opportunity to integrate all the figures and data from each and connect them to a single user interface.

Not only can you control the ability to gather data and statistics, but you'll also be able to control them from the user interface too. This action effectively eliminates the need to work through a control center for each app and helps save time and effort. 

If you have several applications that are vital to the operations of your business, you'll need to get application integration. This process helps eliminate data silos, which are instances where there's a barrier between information sources that prevents them from merging effectively.

For example, if you have a data set from one application and want to combine the data from another but don't have the means to merge the two, the result is a data silo. You'll need a way to circumvent this data silo to integrate all the application's information to make the best use out of both data sets.

How Is Application Integration Beneficial?

There are many instances where companies of various sizes need to integrate their data from applications. Whether it's cloud applications or other CRM applications, having the ability to integrate all the data from each and control it from a single user interface proves to be both a time and money saver.

You don't need to take complex information from each source and manually make sense of them or combine them. You can do that seamlessly with this capability. You can transfer all vital details and data to each department of your company rather than having to do it manually one at a time. It's all available in one place at any time. 

Integration Options

Application integration can also happen at various levels. If you want to create presentation-level integration, you can accomplish this task from a single application using what is commonly known as middleware technology. You can also achieve communications-level integration to enable applications to communicate with one another.

It uses APIs, or application program interfaces, to accomplish these actions. This is considered the highest level of integration and provides multiple capabilities and many ways to connect them to achieve this capability. If you're not using this technology, you aren't harnessing the ability to streamline data flows and simplify actions necessary for growth in today's comparative business world.

There's also the business process integration level. You connect your business processes to a designated server to allow each application to interact. You can employ business automation and eliminate inaccuracies while improving your business's efficiency. By using this option, you can take advantage of the security and features of a cloud-based option and improve overall performance and growth. 

You also have the option to perform data integration. This means you can exchange information across applications by converting information into one format that is interchangeable between all of them. This process is accomplished by creating custom codes or providing third-party connectors that make the process fast and easy.

The connector route is the most efficient and flexible for companies who want to incorporate this ability without employing extra outside assistance or increasing their workforce. 

There's also Uniform Data Access Integration, or UDAI, which focuses on providing access to data in a single format. However, the data remains in its original destination rather than moving or merging. Finally, manual data integration is basic and requires the services of a data engineer responsible for managing and maintaining this process. The data must be cleaned and organized individual to perform as expected. 

Integration Types

There are also other types of data integration that include consolidation, propagation, and federation. In terms of the consolidation type of integration, you'll unify information from all of your sources in one area. If you choose propagation, you'll copy information from one application to another, so they mirror each connected one. When federation is used, the information from each source stays separated but it is taken and unified in a single source. Which one you decide to use depends on your business needs and business setup.

Do You Need Application Integration?

If you have a company or business that relies on two or more applications to conduct operations, you need application integration. It's extremely time-consuming and costly to take the data from each application and then combine them manually to get usable information.

Today's fastest-growing and most efficient businesses know they need to take advantage of tools and options that allow them to integrate all information across their processes, including their applications. Having access to all of your data and details within a single user interface saves money and prevents the need to put extra stress on each department within your company.

Potential Drawbacks

While there are multiple benefits to having application integration, there are a few drawbacks too. One of particular interest is the potential for security risks. Sometimes, when data is transferred from one source to another, security gaps leave data at risk. However, when you partner with a provider with top ETL security, you can eliminate that risk and ensure your sensitive data stays out of harm's way. 

Another point to consider is the need to maintain and upgrade your system to keep it running efficiently. Some providers don't offer ongoing support, but if you choose one that does, you eliminate the hassle of facilitating these actions yourself. As far as costs are concerned, you can find a company that provides this capability for a reasonable price that's much less than you think. 

How Can Help is a top-performing ETL company that offers various application integrations options to suit your business needs. Whether it's a small business or an enterprise-level endeavor, we have the tools and connectors necessary to streamline business operations and workflows to maximize growth and capabilities. If you're not yet using application integration, now is the time to reach out to us and find out what we can do to get you connected and reduce costs. Get your 14-day demo, and let us help you reach new goals.