The Role of IT System Integration in Digital Transformation
There are many reasons for a company to modernize its IT infrastructure. Modernizing your environment enables you to become more agile, flexible, and scalable, and it also saves money, both short and long term.
At the end of the day, for an enterprise to become a digital business, it must recognize that it needs to leverage the capabilities of more modern IT systems. Those enterprises that continue to use disparate, legacy, and outdated systems may not recognize the benefits that modernization promises. One of the first steps an enterprise must complete to modernize its infrastructure revolves around IT system integration.
What is System Integration?
System integration (SI) is a process that connects the various IT systems and applications in an enterprise so that they work cohesively in a coordinated and unified manner. In short, system integration is like putting a puzzle together. There are scattered pieces of an organization’s information subsystems that need to fit together into one well-coordinated, cohesive architecture or integrated application mesh. It’s a complex building process that connects an organization’s functions from varying systems, streamlining disparate systems, including existing hardware, software (customized or out-of-box), and communications.
The end-game with system integration is that an organization improves working relationships with customers and partners, increases workflow efficiency, and lowers operational costs for the business. A system integrator can do this through business process management, computer networking, enterprise application integration, and/or manual programming.
Benefits of IT System Integration
Once an organization makes the commitment to go forward with modernized integration of its environment, the benefits that it gains are wide-ranging. From allowing employees to spend less time on mundane data entry to sleeping safely at night due to better levels of security, a modernized IT environment can provide endless rewards. Some of the benefits of IT systems integration for the enterprise:
Through an integrated infrastructure, the complexities of different business processes and applications are gone, instead replaced by a simple-to-use, unified environment. An integrated architecture is intuitive and allows changes to be made from one screen, wherever the employee is located, rather than multiple computer systems and business processes running concurrently and on top of each other.
- Save money
With the decision to manage all your data and applications from one platform, costs will be greatly reduced. Typical costs associated with the installation of different systems and applications, maintaining and managing piles of in-house equipment will no longer be a costly hurdle for enterprises.
One system means an enterprise doesn’t need to secure various systems individually, each with varying levels of success and risk when it comes to protecting your data. An integrated system allows organizations to more easily build the necessary security tools to prevent unauthorized access and better meet compliance mandates. The more tools you have, the harder a security system is to manage and to install.
- Real-time visibility
An integrated architecture enables an enterprise to make better, educated business decisions because it has access to its data in real time. Gone are the days when a company must make an informed and critical decision based on outdated legacy tools. Now, enterprises can track their data throughout its lifecycle from start to finish. Rather than wait hours for accounting and finance reports, companies can access their data at any time and remain well informed with up-to-date information available from anywhere.
Employees can become more efficient and productive with an integrated and modernized environment. Instead of entering data manually, an often arduous and time-consuming task, structured, formatted data can hop throughout the enterprise ecosystem via automation, allowing employees to spend their time on more productive projects. Additionally, when it comes to retaining and hiring talent, an integrated system allows a company to improve its employee quality, so it doesn’t have to spending money hiring more people for menial tasks.
A Modern IT Landscape is Essential to Digital Transformation
The Amazon effect has changed the way companies think about serving their customers, and has expedited the response time for their needs. Nowadays, if a customer is told by a vendor that if you submit an order in the morning, you’ll get something in return by noon the next day, then that vendor is not going to receive much future business from that customer. Customers demand immediate gratification and immediate response time, and an IT environment that is fully integrated and modernized is equipped to do just that.
Many companies seek to become a fully optimized and fully digital business, but quite frankly, they simply don’t know how to go about doing so. Other companies want to dip their toes into the cloud, but due to security and compliance reasons, remain hesitant to do so. IT system modernization, however, is a strategy that empowers organizations to securely and reliably connect different technologies, cloud applications, and business processes in a quickly configurable way that helps businesses compete in today’s digital world.
How to Get Started
As organizations modernize their IT infrastructures and mix new technologies in with the old ones, maintaining the data flows powering its important relationships becomes increasingly difficult. IT system integration across disparate technologies and applications enables the automation, control, and visibility required to strengthen those partner relationships and achieve greater business agility.
Cleo Integration Cloud is built as a complete solution with the automated tools and intuitive controls you need to easily connect, integrate, and analyze every end-to-end data flow between your ecosystem of customers, partners, suppliers, or external applications and your internal business systems and processes. This ecosystem-driven cloud integration platform delivers the capabilities and methodologies to support the elegant IT system integration, IT modernization, and digital transformation initiatives that will take your business into the future.