Enterprises are adopting digital-first strategies to help increase operational efficiency and meet changing customer expectations. But companies reliant on legacy systems and siloed data are at a disadvantage compared to their digital native competitors and must integrate existing systems and data with modern tools.
Many business leaders recognize the urgency to modernize their infrastructure, but most face significant challenges when it comes to developing an effective enterprise integration strategy.
The State of Integration
Almost all – 93% – of enterprise IT professionals acknowledge the value of integration, with 57% saying integration strategy is vital to the success of their business. And yet implementation remains low. Worse still, organizations that integrate without an effective strategy in place report a range of negative impacts:
- Inability to adopt new technologies
- Ineffective processes that hamper growth and success
- Limited ability to respond to market changes
- IT specialists forced to focus on low-value work
So what’s going wrong? Why is progress on integration roadmaps so slow?
One problem is that many organizations are focusing on integration technology first and failing to consider the other components of an effective integration strategy. While choosing the right solution to support your enterprise integration framework is important, there are other considerations that must come first.
The Three Pillars
1. Define the Goals of Your Project
Before you choose which integration solution is right for your organization, you have to define what you hope to achieve and identify any gaps in your integration capabilities.
The majority of enterprise IT experts agree that integration is important, but their reasons vary considerably:
- Enable the use of artificial intelligence and/or automation
- Improve security or governance
- Reduce operational costs
- Decrease time to market
- Improve analytics and decision-making capabilities
- Upgrade from legacy infrastructure or migrate to the cloud
Once you’ve identified the reasons driving your enterprise integration project, make a list of any factors that could delay or derail implementation. Is the cost of integration a major concern? Are you worried about disruptions to daily operations during the transition? Do you have compliance standards that need to be maintained during your integration journey? Is the potential complexity of the project holding you back?
2. Secure Alignment Among Your Team
As we collected data on the state of enterprise integration in 2022, we uncovered a distinct disparity between different stakeholders when we asked who the key players in integration strategy were:
- 65% of CIOs said members of the C-suite were the major stakeholders
- 72% of developers and architects said that IT was running the show
That gap in perspective is a problem. If two groups with competing priorities and goals each think they’re the principal player in developing an integration strategy, the odds of alignment between objectives and challenges are pretty low.
Forming an enterprise integration strategy team can help ensure that all perspectives are heard and considered as you build an integration roadmap. Make sure you include input from:
- Enterprise architects
- Integration specialists
- Development teams
- Executive leaders
- Anyone who will use your integration solution
Involving players at all organizational levels can help you develop a strategy that achieves everyone’s goals – and avoid dealing with a patchwork of shadow IT solutions.
3. Choose the Right Technology
After you’ve completed these two steps, you’re ready for the final component of your enterprise integration strategy – choosing the right solution. Where other companies have skipped straight to this step, the time and effort you’ve invested in getting to this point will reduce your risk of experiencing common integration pitfalls.
Selecting the right solution will be much easier now that your collaborative team has already defined what you’re trying to achieve and what’s standing in your way. You should have alignment on factors like:
- Short- and long-term goals
- Specific concerns or priorities
Build Your Integration Strategy with Digibee
At Digibee, we understand that business doesn’t stop while you make changes to your systems and processes. Our innovative iPaaS ensures your organization has the flexibility and agility you need to compete in a digital-first world without compromising the high level of service your customers have come to expect.
Digibee’s unique business model means you can try our solution without a lengthy commitment or hefty upfront investment. And even better – we can shorten the time it takes to implement your integration strategy from months to weeks.
Don’t miss out! You’ve got nothing to lose and everything to gain. Request a demo now.