Forrester reported an increase of 66 Saas applications used by an average-sized company in 2016. It mentioned the possibility of exponentially increasing the demand for data integration in the coming years.
When you are ready to embark on your latest project, data management is of paramount concern. The requirement of an effective integration is increased considering multiple channels of data segregation. But how do we decide which integration works best in light of the requirement?
Businesses rely on data analytics to make informed decisions. It requires a robust automated solution to ease the facilitation, and error handling and avoid compatibility issues in data migration. Businesses usually use the Point to Point (P2P) method, where the developers need to feed in some new programs. This custom coding method works fine in a few scenarios but has multiple significant drawbacks.
- Not able to deliver high-yielding results in terms of performance and cost-efficiency
- Compromise with the data security
- Disturbing the basic integration structure and raising the coding & testing requirements may delay the necessary support.
- Provides a reusable platform for any deployments minimizing the need to coding or create new programs.
Considering these challenges in P2P, organizations have adopted different software to do these tasks for them. Let’s have a look at this software-
- iSaaS- This software does not require any complex coding, inconsistent for any change in integration, and works on plug and play method. Multiple software comes with the iSaaS; for example, Oplim, Microsoft Flow, etc.
- iPaaS- Unlike iSaaS, this is complicated software that requires integration coding. Developers are continually working on iPaaS, evolving this into a better version to ease the various integration issues. Some of the most promising iPaaS software are Tibco, Dell Boomi, Mulesoft, etc.
How to choose the best integration
It would be best if you had a checklist for what your iPaaS should include.
- Connector for SaaS and on-premise-based applications (SAP, SFDC)
- Supports XML, JSON based formats
- Predictable API wheel-of-life and management
- The capability of data processing in bulk
- Adaptor/Connector development automation
- Compatibility with other integrations and API authentications
Parameters to compare while choosing an iPaaS
Deployment Capability: Integration should have flexibility in the deployment of apps within containers, multi-gateway environments, on-premises
Data Security: With the significant exposure of business data, API becomes a sweet target for any phishing activity or hacker. Providing stagnant policy-based security for your API is not adequate. It needs to be secured with advanced capability-based modern technologies like AI. The software should protect the data from any attack login system by credential stuffing, cookies, token or API keys stealing threats and should have automated programs to impose security by ensuring encrypted transactions.
AI Capabilities: Technologies like Kafka are becoming a cornerstone in building event-driven architectures to support real-time data processing. It should integrate well with Kafka-like technologies, also enhance the advanced stream processing capabilities, such as cleaning, transformation, etc.
Cost: While many vendors offer you leveraging limited trial packages, some of the iPaaS require you to purchase an additional license. Some of the integration pricing models are based on variable usage of CPU or data connectors. You can choose CPU-usage-based pricing or complete records-based packages depending on the business usage.
API monetization support: Businesses start preferring the platform that promotes the efficient use of services and API to increase ROI and cost-efficiency. iPaaS should have developed portals for external and internal customers to reuse the APIs rather than build them.
Data Processing: A faster integration delivery comes with faster time-to-market for the organization’s initiatives, which gives you increased revenue. It is the most crucial capability on the list. Integration should be able to process a large volume of data in a minimum time. The integration should be compatible and robust to handle large data volumes and reinforce batch processing to perform such complex tasks.
Dashboards: Business analytics or Performance dashboard are essential components you want to have in your integration software. The integration must allow you to visualize the workflows in various graphs/charts that are easy to access, understand, and reliable.
Best iPaaS Software & their features
Multiple software available that you can compare based on the above-listed parameters. We have listed below a few of them.
Mulesoft is a widely used integration by renowned organizations like Netflix, Unilever, Airbnb, etc. This integration enables organizations to utilize their apps and data’s full potential by providing API-led connectivity, regardless of on-premise or cloud interface.
Some key features of Mulesoft are:
- It has various development tools to design APIs, implement integration pipelines and build connectors easily
- It provides a unified Web interface that allows users to manage API users, SLA, and other analytics in a one-view platform.
- Works as an asset that helps you connect faster, develop tools and provide an enterprise-grade secured platform for your API integration, data, etc.
- Reducing the requirement to design new APIs by reusing the data and synchronizing the document with API specs promptly
WSO2 identity server is named A Strong Performer by Forrester. It has robust, comprehensive architecture that concentrates on API and standard-based IAMs.
A few highlights of the WSO2 server are:
- It has a prototyped API that gives the operator to get early access to APIs, reinforcement of APIs based on the developer’s feedback
- Common view to access the user data, integrations, and real-time dashboard
- Its agile CIAM solution that ensures high-security offers to select a discrete gateway to publish APIs in a multi-gateway environment
- Tibco integration gives operators the experience of speed, swift migration of data, and automation. TIBCO Cloud™ enterprise integration Platform-as-a-Service (iPaaS) permits the user to connect the information assets regardless of the interface.
Key Features of Tibco
- It uses a ton of connectors at the popular endpoint and API-led approach to remove the complexity of integrations and makes interconnection swifter
- It provides remarkable flexibility in the deployment of apps within containers, multi-gateway environment, on-premises
- TIBCO Spotfire feature provides accumulated ready-to-work data analysis which can be visualized further in charts and graphs
It is a cloud-based integration purposely designed to simplify the application and data migration between cloud and on-premise applications. It is a versatile, multi-tenant platform that administers to fulfill the smallest to most complex integration requirements.
Key features of Dell Boomi
- One of the USP of Dell Boomi is 100% browser-based integration which makes the platform user-friendly
- Boomi uses API drivers to integrate the source and target system, which can be easily configured without further coding. In addition to this, Boomi has pre-prepared templates for the configuration of standard integration
- This integration automatically removes the error and accelerates data transformation
- The remarkable operational intelligence and reusable business analytics ease the integration and minimize the lapse possibilities
The Way Ahead: Seek assistance from an integration expert
Given today’s uncertainty, businesses need to adopt technology that should be robust, cost-effective and supports the best modern data development practice. Furthermore, the integration should be highly optimized and secured to protect the company’s data. Contact our experts if you still need help deciding which integration suits your business. We have helped numerous organizations with their integration needs and assisted in extending their business potential.
Important Consideration – Return on Investment
The requirement of a new API to drive better data analytics will not justify taking a hit on your business’s financial blueprint. An API integration investment can take 1-3 years to give ROI. Most businesses prefer to make small investments and gradually increase once the business starts giving visible returns. Multiple iPaaS software offers a free trial/version with a limited period or features to run your Proof of Concept (POC) programs.