How Workflow Integration Works (Connect Your Systems)
Workflow automation removes the human component from repetitive, essential tasks, giving you transparency while increasing organizational efficiency.
But for automation to improve your business, your systems need to be integrated. And that can be a challenge because workflow integration isn't always easy.
Without automation and integration, your growing business can only go so far before it starts to trip up over its existing, inefficient systems. To fully scale your growing business and deliver on customer demands, you need a strategy behind workflows integration.
Here's how you can connect your business systems and amplify your growing success.
What Is Workflow Integration?
Workflow integration is the process of connecting (often disparate) business systems, allowing the smooth transfer of data between various platforms. In short, it bridges the gaps between applications, allowing for processes to be automated while providing more accurate data.
The Problem with Growing Application Stacks
Increasing customer demands drive organizations to add more and more features and services to their business model. This means that most companies have huge application stacks.
The average enterprise uses 464 custom applications with another 37 set to deploy within 12 months.
Whether customer-facing or back-office, these programs handle huge amounts of data native to the individual platform. For an organization to be efficient, these applications need to communicate that data seamlessly across various platforms.
But not all platforms are designed to communicate with each other. To make that happen, you need workflow integration software.
Coordinating Workflow Automation Software
Basically, workflow integration software works as a foreign language translator. Each application in your organization speaks a different language. Integration software translates that language effortlessly.
The end result is that the data can move effortlessly between those platforms. And with an endlessly growing list of applications on the market, workflow integration is essential if you want data harmony in your company.
Unfortunately, not all software connects seamlessly. That's the problem.
While major Software as a Service (SaaS) platforms, such as G-Suite or Office 365 can connect to other mainstream applications without many issues, custom-built and older applications aren’t so lucky. This leaves organizations with many disconnected mission-critical applications.
With workflow integration, businesses can sync that software, creating bridges that link applications and workflows, giving them the most out of their process automation.
Types of Workflow Integration
Whether building on existing technology or creating a custom integration, businesses can choose from several types of workflow integration solutions.
While many Business Process Management (BPM) software solutions claim they can integrate, it’s not always at the same level of functionality as promised.
Knowing both how a platform can integrate and its limitations are key to creating seamless workflows.
There are three different types of workflow integrations businesses can choose from:
1. Built-In Integration
Some BPM tools are already plugged into different software. Right out the box, its connection capabilities work well with other SaaS platforms. Many major BPMs already have integrations built into them.
Application Programming Interface (API) is a functionality of many cloud-based apps for integration. It’s an open-ended port that can be customized for inter-system communication. Whether these APIs are public or not depends on the business, but every BPM software should be API accessible for the most seamless syncing and data transfer.
3. Third-Party Solutions
BPM software that wasn’t designed for integration is still commonly used. If an organization wants to evolve its process automation while maintaining its current technology, there are middleware integration apps available on the market that could be utilized to create custom API connections.
Reducing Technical Debt
Carrying out workflow integration is vital for any business that wants to remain competitive while growing. Without that scalability, you'll spend more time managing your success rather than using your momentum to grow exponentially.
Plus, every organization has to balance its digital needs within its budget.
But creating bespoke software solutions from scratch is often both time-consuming and time-intensive. As a result, designing workflow integrations to automate and scale your business could potentially devour entire IT budgets leaving little ROI.
That's why so many growing businesses hit a wall.
They know what they need to do to scale and succeed. But, they're often afraid of risk and investment needed to make the necessary leap forward.
Modernizing legacy systems comes with its fair share of expenses. Removing technical debt with lines of code created from scratch requires skill, time, and money.
It also diverts IT departments from focusing on innovation and efficiency (not to mention the cost of maintenance from middleware software).
Companies that want to scale effectively will need to move away from their old legacy systems. They need to adopt modern, flexible technology for integration. And the best way to do that is by using a low-code platform.
Integrate Faster With Low Code
Low-code platforms are user-friendly, (often) visual interface platforms that give anyone in an organization the power to create custom integrations with a few clicks.
The key to their success as a tool for small, growing businesses is in their accessibility. Because their interfaces require low- or no-code, anyone can quickly learn the platform without background knowledge in code and start building workflow integrations at ease.
Users simply need to drag and drop prefabricated integrations into place to connect applications. And BAM! You get seamless integration. Hassle-free.
The benefits of using low code for workflow integration are profound.
These platforms reduce IT backlogs and frees employees to focus on creating more complex tools. By design, they're low in code, which means they're low in technical debt. And their accessibility means that anyone in your organization (not just developers) can create the systems needed to free up time spent on menial tasks, giving everyone more resources to focus on high-level, meaningful work.
These citizen developers are helping to restructure their organizations with useful solutions that benefit the whole business.
Best of all, low code platforms are typically subscription-based, meaning that there's a low barrier to entry. And costs scale with your business. This makes them an affordable option for any growing business looking to integrate and automate their systems.
Connect Your Business Systems
Efficiency is crucial if you're a growing business looking to remain competitive. Automation makes that happen. And workflow integration supports that practice by bridging the gaps between your systems.
Still, every business has a growing number of systems. Which ones do you connect? And what's the best way to go about integrating those workflows? How do you find out which system automation will yield the best ROI?
That answer isn't always clear.
That's why we work with businesses to help them integrate processes and automate workflows.
As technology consultants, we learn your specific business needs and work with you to develop a solution that keeps your business growing without letting your systems trip you up.
See how we've helped our clients improve their businesses and get insane ROIs by checking out our case studies below.