The agility of a business to adjust to ebbs and flows in the market is extremely important. One way businesses are making this happen is by integrating their operational software with their management software. This tactic allows data to move faster, providing businesses with some very specific benefits. Let’s take a look at how integration works.
For the layman, software integration could seem like you are adding more software. Technically this is true, but really what is happening is that each software title your business depends on has its own application programming interface (API). The API is created to make it easier for different parts of a computer program to work with other parts of the program, but it also allows developers to write code to connect other pieces of software together. In doing so, businesses can link databases together to enhance data flow, and execute code that will automate tasks. Growing cooperation between line-of-business software and productivity and communications software may not be noticed by the front-end user; but, if it’s done right, it will definitely be noticed on the revenue statement.
How does this work? Well, most businesses use some type of line-of-business software to manage their business. There is professional services automation (PSA) used primarily by professional services companies. You have enterprise resource planning (ERP) that is typically used by manufacturers. Then for smaller and less resource intensive businesses, there is the customer relationship management (CRM) software.
Most PSA and ERP solutions, as well as the numerous other platforms like them, include the functionality of the CRM software. This typically includes options for storing contacts/business information and managing operations, calendar, scheduling, invoicing, and even managing human resources. You can see how integrating other software with line-of-business software can be of huge benefit, as the it provides enhanced and faster data flow throughout the organization.
It can be quite difficult to do, however, if your business doesn’t have access to the development resources it needs. Today, you can gain traction by outsourcing your development needs to an outsourced service or gig-worker. Doing so, however, will present its own set of issues. You will need to know exactly what you want out of an integration. Developers are very technical people and need to know what type of coordination you are looking for. This will avoid a long-term back-and-forth that could make a relatively simple integration a very, very costly endeavor.
A successful integration can do quite a bit for your business. Benefits you can see include:
Integrating production software with line-of-business software can work to make things much more efficient, increase revenue-building situations by 50 percent, and can even increase sales.
If you are looking for a way to speed up your business or enhance your business analytics platform, developing integrations with the core software your business uses is a solid practice. Could you benefit from a simple integration of software titles? Leave your thoughts in the comments section below; and subscribe to our blog for more useful technology content.