The business case for an integration platform as a service (iPaaS) is well founded: it’s moved from purely enabling dynamic integration for cloud-based services, towards more strategic IT goals and as an enabler of key business objectives. If you’ve sold the concept to the business leadership – a vital pre-requisite for this journey – you must now decide on what iPaaS you choose.
And from the conversations I’ve been having with some large enterprise customers, it’s a difficult decision to make. That’s because in the world of the enterprise iPaaS, all things are not equal. Spurred on by these client conversations, I’ve identified four key questions that I believe all organizations looking at procuring an iPaaS need to ask. Why are they important? Well, in the vein of a much-loved Christmas TV advert, an enterprise iPaaS is not just for the here and now, it’s for the long-term. It’s how you continue to rapidly deliver innovative services to customers and other stakeholders long into the future.
4 questions guiding your iPaaS choice
Which brings me to the main theme of this blog: how to future proof your enterprise iPaaS decision. The four questions are:
· Portability: can you switch your iPaaS across any public and private cloud vendor?
· Security: how secure is the data held within your iPaaS?
· Pricing: is your usage-based model genuinely based on usage?
· Innovation: is there a way to use the iPaaS to sustain a cost-effective innovation pipeline?
Portability is a big concern. A number of clients have recently asked for their iPaaS to be hosted in their own country. If your business is in Europe, you are likely to want your iPaaS to be located in Europe for performance and political reasons. The same could equally apply if you’re doing business in China, or elsewhere. I’ve also had clients who have a preferred cloud provider. For example, retailers may not want to use a cloud provider with a competing retail business. The flexibility to choose where you provision your iPaaS is thus an important consideration.
Another vital consideration in today’s public cloud landscape has to be whether the chosen iPaaS vendor can truly guarantee data isolation – for example, where data resides in a shared services capability. But the story doesn’t end there. Existing and emerging regulations now require enterprises to securely open up data from within their business. One way to achieve this is through a robust API management platform, which can also then be used to collaborate with partners and customers, as well as internally between different departments.
Then there is the matter of pricing. Some iPaaS models are usage based. Or are they? If your usage needs to change but you’re locked into a restrictive annual contract, what happens then? It’s an issue that has to be considered in light of the fact that annual pricing is the norm. And finally, the ability to innovate is a vital differentiator in a crowded market place. But innovation – and the resources to make it happen – can be costly.
Ticking all the right boxes
We understand how important these criteria are to ensure that enterprises continue to achieve their desired outcomes from their adoption of iPaaS. This is why when we launched our iPaaS in the market, we not only ensured that it outcompetes other iPaaS vendors, but that we would be able to support our clients’ future ambitions too. So, let’s recap:
- Yes, our platform is cloud agnostic and can be ported across any public and private cloud vendors.
- Yes, your data remains secure. The platform gives enterprises the flexibility to locate their integration center of gravity on their private cloud. Also, with a dedicated instance of the platform, each client has guaranteed assurance of data isolation.
- Yes, it really is usage based, with our differentiating pay-per-use model based on monthly subscription pricing and the flexibility to burst on a daily basis to efficiently manage shifts in demand.
- Yes, we’ve built the platform on some of the best open source products in the market, enabling you to tap into the large and talented open source community for continuous innovation.
An enterprise API and hybrid integration platform as a service will be increasingly pivotal to getting the most from an evolving hybrid cloud environment in the coming years. But it’s important to identify the right decision points that will ensure your iPaaS can continue to support your needs in the future. Find out more about Capgemini Enterprise iPaaS.