Your business is evolving quickly with new competitors, changing customer needs, and the continuous refinement of both your business processes and product/service offerings to make the best of market opportunities. Sustainable competitive advantage in this environment is built on three things – information, innovation, and agility.
Your leaders understand this, which is why they are placing so much pressure on IT and business groups to accelerate digital transformation to leverage technology in new ways and deploy modern capabilities like Integrated Platform as a Service (IPaaS) to support this rapidly changing environment.
At the heart of business innovation and agility is information – more specifically, the ability to integrate analyze and harvest information into actionable insights that help leaders to understand their environment and continuously refine business operations. The information that leaders need comes from all over your company – sales, finance, manufacturing, customer service, marketing, and others. This information is captured, stored, and managed in a wide variety of IT systems. Some of these may be hosted on-premises in your IT data centers, and others may be SaaS applications or systems managed by suppliers and partners.
Regardless of what IT systems you have, where they are located, or who manages them, the data they contain provides critical insights to opportunities, challenges, and risks that could impact your business’s performance. If you want to be successful, you need to bring your enterprise data together and get those insights in front of the decision-makers in real-time so that it can be translated into business value and competitive advantage.
That’s where Integration Platform as a Service comes in. IPaaS provides the tools and capabilities to manage all your company’s data connections in one place – giving you access to data from across the company. Individual business systems may come and go (that’s okay). IPaaS enables you to innovate within individual business functions without losing enterprise data transparency.
The proliferation of SaaS solutions and specialized off-the-shelf software from 3rd parties over the past few years is providing business users with a vibrant marketplace of technical capabilities that they can quickly adopt and begin leveraging. All it takes is little more than the swipe of a credit card and the creation of an online profile. If a better capability is found, users simply abandon the system they were using and start using something new.
In the modern era of technology, software (and hardware) have become disposable resources, and it is data that has evolved into the durable strategic asset that companies are seeking to capture, manage and convert into a competitive advantage. IPaaS solutions like Actian DataConnect are designed to help your IT organization enable the business innovation and agility that users require while at the same time supporting the enterprise’s need for data continuity and end-to-end information insights.
The key to innovation and business agility is enabling change to take place in a safe and controlled manner – you don’t want to slow down change, only minimize disruption. IPaaS solutions provide five key capabilities that your IT organization needs to support business agility:
- Centralized management of data connections and credentials
- Data flow orchestration
- Data governance and access control
- Ease of use
- Rapid time to value
By managing these things in a centralized place, your business processes, analytics, and individual IT systems can be isolated from the impacts of individual application of platform changes. The system as a whole can continue operating while one or more pieces are being evolved. This is powerful because it means your entire business can be transformed into a platform of innovation.
You can try out new things with lower risk, and if they work, migrate off old systems and processes. If they don’t work, you can unplug the test system, capture lessons learned, and try something different.
You may have hundreds or thousands of IT systems, but you only have one company, and IPaaS gives you the tools to manage your enterprise data better. Don’t slow down business innovation – enable and encourage it with the right set of tools to enable change to happen faster, easier, and safer.