5 good reasons why your integration might fuck up
Tips and tricks
Does it feel like the work you should be doing is constantly being undermined by having to reproduce what you’re doing over individual systems, patching over any incompatibilities by hand afterwards? Integrations that work will save both your nerves, your time, and (as a consequence) your money. If you’re wondering about the benefits integration could bring to your business, jump here.
If you decide you do want integration to make things easier and improve your business, it could be worth reading through this checklist before the ‘show’ which highlights the places where a band might totally lose their place in a song and cause an integration project to fail…
1. WHEN THE PRICE TAG STOPS YOU FROM SEEING THE FUTURE
This unfortunately very common pitfall truly deserves pole position. If the most important criterion in an integration project is price and that the project be finished sooner rather than later, then the benefits are likely to be slim. Integration will, by definition, reduce costs anyway – by allowing things to run more smoothly and take less time than before. If the focus is on making things as cheaply and quickly as possible, then there is rarely enough time to ensure the versatility or reusability of the integration. This means that it won’t stand the test of time, and sooner rather than later we are again faced with an unusable and helplessly convoluted software system. When future integration needs can also be mapped out so that you are as best-prepared for them as possible, then you are making longer-term savings.
2. WHEN YOU DON’T THINK THINGS THROUGH BEFORE IMPLEMENTATION
The silver medal in this race goes to half-hearted planning which can result in integrations being implemented in many different ways. When a project starts with merely a superficial scratch of the surface, there is little chance of making a properly centralised means for monitoring, upkeep and management of the system. Half-hearted planning will also lead to tests being run without any kind of definition, which will only get you deeper into trouble. When the project is properly managed as a holistic whole, and with clear aims, there’s less chance of any nasty surprises.
3. STAKEHOLDERS NEEDS ARE OVERLOOKED FROM THE START
Third on the list is overlooking the needs of stakeholders. Integrations should always include other parties besides just you and your company. Forgetting this will come back to haunt you very soon after when the integration doesn’t hold together in practice. At the very least, the planning must take into account the party carrying out the integration, the internal customer, the producer of the information, and outside system suppliers. These stakeholders all have their own requirements, aims, and limitations. If they are not taken into account from the very beginning, they will not be catered for later either, and in the worst case scenario the new integration might actually make it worse for other systems. This will result in incomplete integration, thus failing to meet the demands it was actually developed for.
4. CHOOSING THE WRONG TECHNOLOGY
The fourth challenge for an integration project is when a passive solution is implemented via an integration channel over systems which are too old and therefore incapable of retrieving information from it. This is a bit like music falling on deaf ears – not much use. Another common mistake is to go for micro-service architecture before you know what the real needs are. So don’t jump ahead of yourself into just any kind of project, take the time to stop and think first about what the best solution for you might be.
5. PRODUCT’S LICENSING MODEL DOES NOT SOLVE THE REAL PROBLEM
The fifth reason why your project might unnecessarily hit the fan might be because the wrong licensing model has been chosen. An example of this kind of poor choice could be choosing a volume-based licensing model in a situation where integrations are then keeping the business from growing, or when you choose a product that is licensed according to the number of integrated systems even though you have the intention of adding even more. This creates lots of unnecessary obstacles for your business which will cost you more in the long run.
If you steer clear of these five things, you’ll be well on your way to a successful integration project. With us you won’t fall prey to any of them, and rest assured that we’ll be rocking and rolling together in perfect time right to the end of the set… who knows, there might even be an encore!