Ultimate Guide to Business System Integrations

If you’re struggling with siloed operations and data, a business systems integration can help. Learn more about the benefits and where to start.

Graphic depicting different connected systems

March 27, 2024

In today’s fast-paced business landscape, the need for seamless communication and data flow between various systems within an organization has become paramount. Gone are the days of siloed information and disjointed processes that hinder productivity and innovation. The solution? Business system integrations.

Before diving too deeply – it is important to understand the “before” state for organizations’ lacking system integration and the pain points they often bring. Lacking business integration commonly includes challenges such as fragmented data silos, inefficient workflows, manual data entry errors, and the inability to adapt to evolving business needs swiftly. These pain points not only hamper operational efficiency, but also hinder strategic decision-making and impede overall growth.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll cover the intricacies of business system integrations, from understanding pain points driving organizations to integrate different systems, the options for system integration, to exploring the key steps and considerations involved in the implementation process.

Key Points

  1. What is business systems integration?
  2. Types of business system integrations
  3. Benefits of integrating business systems
  4. Steps to follow before implementing
  5. Optimal features to consider when evaluating integration solutions

What is business systems integration?

At its core, business systems integration refers to the process of connecting disparate systems and applications within an organization to streamline and simplify data flowing from one place to another. The ultimate goal is to create a cohesive ecosystem where data flows seamlessly between internal IT systems and third-party applications. This functionality ultimately fosters improved collaboration, efficiency, and decision-making capabilities.

Types of Systems

Business systems integration encompasses various types of systems, including but not limited to:

  • Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems: These are comprehensive platforms managing core business processes such as finance, HR, inventory, and supply chain operations. Common examples include Oracle Netsuite and SAP S/4HANA.
  • Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems: Solutions like HubSpot and Salesforce help businesses manage interactions with current and potential customers.
  • Supply Chain Management (SCM) systems: These platforms optimize the flow of goods and services from suppliers to customers.
  • Human Resource Management (HRM) systems: Tools like Workday streamline HR processes such as payroll, recruitment, and employee management.

Role of APIs

Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) and connectors play a crucial role in facilitating seamless data exchange between these different systems. APIs allow systems to communicate with each other, enabling the transfer of information in a standardized data format, while connectors act as bridges between incompatible systems, ensuring smooth integration.

Types of business system integrations

While there are numerous integration models and methods – hub and spoke, point-to-point, star integration, and ESB – three primary types are to be considered:

  1. Enterprise Application Integration (EAI): This approach focuses on integrating various applications within an organization using middleware platforms. Examples include Integration Platform as a Service (iPaaS), like Digibee, and Enterprise Service Bus (ESB).
  2. Data integration: Data integration involves consolidating and harmonizing data from disparate sources to provide a unified view. Solutions like Informatica and SnapLogic are popular choices in this category.
  3. Electronic document integration: This type of integration focuses on automating the electronic data interchange for documents such as invoices, purchase orders, and contracts between systems. Solutions like MuleSoft and Dell Boomi excel in electronic document integration.

Benefits of integrating business systems

The benefits of systems integrations are extensive and should be carefully considered for organizations looking to achieve interconnectivity for a variety of reasons:

Enhanced Data Accuracy:

By eliminating manual data entry and minimizing errors, integrations ensure that data remains accurate and consistent across systems.

Improved Efficiency:

Integrations streamline workflows and automate repetitive tasks, boosting productivity and reducing turnaround times.


Integrated systems can easily scale to accommodate growing business needs, retire legacy systems, and keep pace with new technology requirements.

Reduced Operational Costs:

By streamlining processes and improving efficiency, integrations help organizations lower operational costs and optimize resource utilization.

Improved Customer Experience:

Seamless integrations enable organizations to deliver personalized and timely experiences to customers by providing businesses with a 360 customer view, enhancing customer satisfaction and loyalty.

Risk Mitigation:

Integrations facilitate regulatory compliance by ensuring data integrity and security – thereby reducing the risk of non-compliance penalties.

3 simple steps to take before implementing a business systems integration

Before embarking on a business systems integration journey or any integration project, organizations should undertake the following steps:

  1. Pull in relevant stakeholders: Engage stakeholders from across teams and external partners to define project goals, identify risks, and develop a comprehensive plan.
  2. Analyze current systems: Evaluate existing systems – legacy systems and modern – to understand their capabilities, limitations, and compatibility with potential integration solutions. Identify the integrations that would need mapping to understand what solution would provide the best compatibility.
  3. Consider scalability and future growth: Anticipate future business needs and scalability requirements to ensure that the chosen integration solution can adapt and grow alongside the organization. New technologies are constantly emerging. Ensure you choose an integration solution that easily integrates with modern solutions, staying innovative and maintaining future growth.

Key features to consider in evaluation

While organizations have the option to build integration solutions from scratch, there are plenty of vendors, like Digibee, that offer a best-in-class SaaS solution. When evaluating purchasing integration solutions, consider the following key features:

  • Complexity of implementation: Choose a solution that aligns with your organization’s technical expertise and implementation timelines.
  • Integration capabilities: Ensure that the solution supports seamless integration with a wide range of systems and applications.
  • Day-to-Day management: Evaluate the ease of managing and maintaining the integration solution, including monitoring, troubleshooting, and updating. You don’t want a solution that is more time-consuming than productive.
  • Support: Look for vendors that offer responsive support services to address any issues or concerns that may arise during implementation and beyond.
  • Data governance: Prioritize solutions that provide robust data governance features to ensure data integrity, security, and compliance.
  • Cost: Consider the total cost of ownership, including upfront licensing fees, implementation costs, ongoing maintenance, and support fees.

How Digibee can help

As organizations navigate the complexities of business systems integrations, partnering with a trusted integration platform provider like Digibee can streamline the process and drive success.

Product Overview

Digibee is a powerful iPasS that simplifies the integration of disparate business systems and applications. The most efficient, scalable way to facilitate integration projects is with an integration platform as a service, or iPaaS, such as Digibee. An iPaaS is a platform developers use to build and manage integrations on scalable architecture—it replaces outdated integration options like ESB and includes features like reusable components, a low-code interface, managed infrastructure, prebuilt integrations, and enterprise support. 

Unlike some of its predecessors, Digibee’s iPaaS doesn’t require specialized training or a long implementation. On the contrary, it speeds up digital transformation projects by automating and simplifying the development workflows needed to connect legacy systems and cloud applications in one unified system. 

Digibee is different in that it is the only integration platform that scales application integration workflows while reducing cost, technical debt, and the burden on development teams. It allows developers to quickly build, test, deploy, govern, and monitor integrations across on-premises systems and cloud environments—they can then use the platform in tandem with API management and ETL tools for full synchronization across the organization.

Digibee is a born-in-the-cloud integration platform, that modernizes how enterprises connect applications, data, processes, and people. The integration platform includes:

Digibee in Action

Digibee has helped numerous organizations streamline operations, enhance efficiency, and drive innovation through integration across a multitude of industries including retail, manufacturing, and hospitality:

  • Helped a hotel chain reduce guest wait times by 80% and operating expenses by 300k annually
  • Integrated a new secure e-commerce platform for retailer Payless across more than 200 stores, in 15 countries, in less than 30 days
  • Enabled an ERP cloud migration for Bauducco – simplifying and modernizing existing legacy systems and integrations while saving $2 million on project costs

Take a Tour

In conclusion, business systems integrations offer a myriad of benefits, from improving efficiency and data accuracy to enhancing customer experiences and ensuring compliance. By following the key steps outlined in this guide and evaluating integration solutions with care, organizations can embark on a successful integration journey that drives growth, innovation, and competitive advantage.

Ready to revolutionize your business systems integration journey? Schedule a demo or take a tour of Digibee’s platform to discover how it can help with system connectivity in your own organization.

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