Have you heard of system integration? In the beginning stages of starting a business, many companies choose to rely on multiple individual software systems to carry the weight of day to day operations. Whilst this seems like the easiest and most cost-effective option, as your business grows, it is essential for your business software to be integrated to save you time, increase productivity and give you more accurate results. Software integration is a process which combines multiple sub-systems of your business into a larger, easier and quicker system. In this article, we look at how you can go about integrating your software, so read on to find out more!
Make A Note of All The Software You Are Utilising
The first step towards software integration is to make a list of all the various software you are utilising for your day to day business proceedings. Chances are, you’re using a myriad of software which may include small business accounting software, calendar software, CRM software, scheduling software and payroll software, just to name a few. Keeping track of all the software you’re making use of is one step towards integrating them into a larger, more efficient network that your business can use to increase your productivity levels and reduce confusion.
Think Of Exactly What You Need
The next step is to sit down and truly think about what exactly your company will need from your integrated software system. This need will differ from company to company, as no two companies require the same type of integration. In order to achieve maximum success with your integration, it is important to decide on what you need your future system for and what components you will require. Once you figure this out, you can then settle on an integration that is both easy and comfortable for all your employees to use. You’re now ready to choose one of the three integration processes that we will look at below.
1. NATIVE INTEGRATION
The first kind of integration we will look at is native integration. Native integration involves you gathering all your software from one developer. Your software will come with native in-built buttons that assist in seamlessly integrating them with one another. Native integration is one of the most popular software integration methods as you have all your tools in one toolbox. A slight downside to native integration is that once in a while, you may need a tool that your developer doesn’t offer. You could also encounter the problem of some tools being inferior in quality to what you’d prefer. If you think this may be an issue for you, let’s look into other methods of software integration.
The second route of integration is third-party integration. This is where third-party developers create a portal where all your software can communicate with each other. If choosing this option, it is advised that you look for a company that can offer you a wide range of tools. This way, you can always enlist their help again should you feel like integrating new software into your system. Third-party integration is a fantastic option but can come at a high price. If you’re looking for something a little more cost-effective, let’s have a look at API integration.
API is a software that allows 2 platforms to communicate with each other. API is a messenger that processes requests and will ensure you a smooth and seamless functioning of your enterprise systems. API is often a built-in feature of many software. Before you acquire any new tools, always ask your developer about their API and if they can connect your software to one another. API is a cost-effective method of integration which can also be done in-house, saving you time and effort.
Always Remember To Test Your Integration
Lastly, once you are done with your software integration, it is imperative that you test it out before actually launching it. Testing the fully-integrated application involves ensuring that all components are interacting with one another smoothly and efficiently.
We hope that this article has given you some insight into how you can carry out software integration for your startup. The benefits of software integration are plenty, and once you switch over, you’ll find that you are saving time, money and increasing productivity levels almost instantly!