What is system integration?
The IT jungle consists of many complex and indecipherable words, but integration is not one of them. It is a fundamental concept which you should be familiar with. Used correctly, it can generate long-term value for you. System integration therefore plays a vital role in the IT strategy of many organisations.
The term itself means that two or more independent systems are linked together so that they can function together - quite simply, so that they can exchange information. In order for this to work in practice, an application is created which interacts with the interfaces of the various systems. The systems can then automatically send information to each other via this application. This eliminates the need to have someone whose job is to manually enter the information in the respective systems.
For example, you might want to link your finance system to your invoicing system. Or your business system to your CRM system in order to manage customer-related data. If only two systems have to talk to each other, it may be sufficient to use what is known as point-to-point. In simple terms, this means that we link the systems together so that information can be sent between them. However, this is a relatively unusual approach in our digital world, where systems and applications are increasing rather than decreasing in number. The need for links between systems and applications is therefore increasing.
If your business has a number of different systems which must be integrated, this solution will be expensive and complicated in the long run. Maintaining these links can rapidly become very time-intensive. In such cases, an integration platform is preferable. Today, loose links and re-usability are keywords in the work relating to integration, and the aim is always to generate value for the business in both the short and the long term.
Why should you invest in system integration?
As a business manager, you need to monitor your systems. You must be aware both of your business’s information needs and the way in which data is processed within your business. Finally, you need to know how the various systems within your organisation are linked together.
How difficult can it be to link two systems together? Surely, all you have to do is draw a line between them?
It may seem easy to get two or more systems to talk to each other, but in order to generate long-term value for the organisation, this must be done in the right way from the start based on the needs of the business. It is often possible to improve an organisation’s efficiency and quality by ensuring that systems communicate with each other optimally.
Smart system integration can improve:
- The profitability of your business
- The quality of your information
- The usability of your systems
We know from experience that it is in the use that the magic happens. It is there that the benefits are generated and that the everyday is changed for the better. It is the answer to the question why you should invest in system integration. The digital journey starts with smart system integration!
Do you want to know how to ensure your integration project is a success? What are some common challenges you might face?