Integration in 2016: How to deal with digital disruption
By Navdeep Sidhu, senior director, Integration & API Management Product Marketing for Software AG
* Software AG reveals top trends in integration technologies.
* APIs will enable DIY ('do-it-yourself') integration of data.
* Customer behaviour to drive MDM solutions.
* Bimodal platforms will marry citizen developers and IT.
Software AG shared its view of trends in integration, API (application program interface) and MDM (master data management) technologies based on its interactions and observations from more than 4 000 customers.
Navdeep Sidhu, senior director, Integration & API Management Product Marketing for Software AG, noted: "Digital transformation cannot happen quickly enough. In 2016, we will continue to see this digital trend as consumer behaviour further drives change and puts a question mark on every business model. I believe there are eight key trends that we will see arise through the year."
1. Everything will be hybrid
The complexity of cloud adoption and the need for increased innovation to build digital apps will force IT to explore different cloud options. Companies will want hybrid cloud, hybrid integration and even managed cloud. Companies will move away from just cloud solutions to real hybrid solutions. Instead of just focusing on public and private cloud options, IT will increasingly explore other models for flexibility and control.
2. APIs will get their Swagger back
The Swagger API framework is becoming the de facto standard, and initiatives like Open API are further standardising the role of Swagger in API development. I predict Swagger will gain further traction and, over time, become the most widely used standard for APIs. Vendors will rally behind the Open API initiative and give Swagger a much-needed boost to become the dominating API standard and RAML (RESTful API modeling language) will fade over time.
3. APIs will enable 'self-service' integration
Imagine a world where everything is an API and all your data is immediately accessible to you and those you choose. That includes your customers, partners, suppliers, banks and just about everyone in your ecosystem. How will you manage this complicated world of data access? APIs will provide the answer and self-service style on-boarding for APIs will drive integration.
4. Bimodal goes mainstream
Citizen developers and citizen integrators will co-exist peacefully with IT teams to deliver new applications and interfaces to speed the overall innovation quotient of the organisation. Different integration models will come together under IT and thrive.
5. Integration will capture big data's hidden value
Companies have been adopting Hadoop platforms for storing data sets without actualising the full value. Increased integration of existing systems with newly acquired Hadoop platforms will unlock the hidden value, enabling big data to finally be used to make smart decisions to improve customer satisfaction.
6. Microservices will demolish monolithic architectures
The microservices movement will gain strength and slowly keep drilling away at the foundation of monolithic architectures. As organisations speed up digital transformation, they will realise the biggest roadblock to faster innovation is the legacy monolithic architectures - and will find ways to adopt more "DevOps" friendly microservices-based architectures.
7. IOT will meet MDM
The expanding definition of customer-360 means MDM will incorporate data about customer buying preferences, linking that data to standard MDM data quality processes, such as cleansing and matching. Synchronising and enriching the customer master record through device-generated sensor data will become a more common requirement for MDM's customer consolidation process.
8. MDM will get prettier - and smarter
MDM solutions will continue to increase support for business data stewards by simplifying work views, creating more application-oriented interfaces, and integrating business intelligence tools and "dash-boarding" to understand the value and impact of superior data quality on business processes.
Sidhu concluded: "This year the focus will be on finding the necessary IT capabilities for faster transformation, as organisations realise that existing models are not capable of supporting it. At the end of the day, all of our predictions point to how organisations can build better business applications - as those will be the manifestation of how they will become digital enterprises."