The all-seeing iPaaS: the mighty connector of everything

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In the business and tech worlds, predicting the future is an old game and one that nobody ever gets quite right. Assessing the present is a different matter – and it’s something that businesses can’t afford to get wrong.

Tech prophecy articles usually make for a fun read. Packed with speculative predictions, they always seem to pop up before a keynote or the end of the year. Sometimes they’re right on the button; more often than not they’re wildly inaccurate. It’s not an area where anyone really expects precision.

The same can’t be said of an organization’s own data. Now, more than ever, it’s essential for companies to have a holistic view of the applications and data that make up their business.

DOMO – the danger of missing out

The proliferation of cloud means that the way business gets done today has fundamentally changed. Businesses are now platform based, and every business uses some form of cloud-based software to deliver their products and services.

The cloud has brought about internal changes too – as business units such as HR or Marketing expand into the cloud, a company’s portfolio of data and services also expands. This can mean that different parts of the business are using and managing different software, hosted on different clouds. This increased complexity brings increased difficulties in getting a comprehensive view of all an organization’s data.

But having this view is important. Missing out or overlooking data means missing out on opportunities, which in turn means a blunting of a company’s commercial edge – something that is simply too much of a risk in today’s accelerating business world.

From business to platform

The key to gaining this vision is integration-Platform-as-a-Service – iPaaS. The exact model of the application programming interface (API) and integration platform your organization needs will vary from business to business; it might be bought as a discrete solution from a single vendor, or as an API management platform that’s combined with a Container-as-a-Service – CaaS sources from multiple vendors. But whatever its shape, having an API and integration platform is crucial and effective.

iPaaS is already breaking down internal siloes in those companies that have embraced it. This is important. Why? Because as sophistication increases, the risks that siloed systems present also increases: clouds don’t naturally work together.

However, with iPaaS, businesses can have a one-stop shop where all your information, applications and data connect. iPaaS is the central place where everything in your organization comes together – it’s the very fabric of your IT.

Integrated data for integrated business

This connectivity isn’t just a nice-to-have functionality; within a couple of years, the, competitive advantage brought by a holistic data vision will become a competitive necessity. iPaaS will become make or break for firms wanting to survive in a digitally transformed market.

Between March and May 2018, we surveyed 818 IT executives for our report, Unlocking the hybrid integration dividend. The survey revealed 66% of the survey respondents already use three or more clouds, giving an idea of the current extent of data proliferation.

With complexity on the increase, different businesses will fare differently. We found that companies were divided into two distinct groups. The forward-looking companies that are adapting to new technologies and embracing digital transformation are Integrators, while those holding on to older ways of working are Deliberators.

The Integrators are the ones already seeing the dividends paid out by transforming and adopting tools such as iPaaS. In fact, 49% of Integrators reported a revenue growth of 5% or more over the past three years.

A conduit for consideration

Data is everywhere and not in a central location; it needs to be transient and secure. And not just available, but easily and rapidly available, rather than being tied to a hard-to-access silo or system. The powerful connectivity of iPaaS allows it to act as the conduit for an organization’s data, holding it all together and making the process of aggregation and discovery seamless and painless.

With enhanced connectivity, availability and application usage, the process of decision-making becomes much more efficient. The insight gains ensure that real-time decision-making is accurate, valuable, and focused on answering mission-critical issues.

The result is a significant augmentation to the velocity of an organization. The ability to quickly assimilate existing data puts the business in a better position to take advantage of the ever-shifting state of the art: identifying emerging revenue streams and staying ahead of today’s digital transformation game.

Above the clouds

With the holistic vision brought by total connectivity, businesses can become Integrators – leaving behind Deliberators and establishing themselves as flexible, scalable, and strategic, future-thinking firms.

The comprehensive insights that iPaaS unlocks bring never-before-seen flexibility, allowing the enterprise to scale on demand and bring new efficiencies and synergies to the table. In our report we discovered that 78% of Integrators described their integrations as highly scalable; only 8% of Deliberators could say the same.

Embracing the cloud is not the destination; it’s just a waypoint on the path to digital transformation, albeit a vital one. The cloud itself is not enough – without the ability to intercommunicate, even the biggest cloud platform can become a silo.

iPaaS is the best way for organizations to bring together all the different bits of software and data that make their business work. However, it’s important to note that the approach will look different for every company.

The big question you are left with is, do you want a single vendor iPaaS solution, or an iPaaS constructed of a leading API manager coupled with integrations running in containers or serverless functions, which avoids lock-in

It’s going to depend on your aspirations, your market, and many other factors.

We can’t predict the future, but we can speak with authority on the present: Capgemini has unrivalled experience in this area. Get in touch and find out which approach would be best for you.

For more information, download our white paper, Unlocking the hybrid integration dividend

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