System Integration; is it really so complicated?

13.04.2016

Steve was reassuring his CIO saying ‘Gary, everything is in place and all we need is to get started’

Mark, another architect, put his coffee down and smirking, asked Steve, ‘Are you sure’?

‘I guarantee it – it’ll be perfectly smooth’, replied Steve with confidence. What’s the problem?

A problem? Surely not already; let’s roll back and look at the background.

systems integration is it that complicated

Steve works as an integration specialist in the ABC Corporation.  He handles System integration support for existing clients. So what exactly is System Integration?

System integration is the method by which enterprises connect different working systems, whether on a physical machine or a virtual one.  There are different stages and steps involved in joining these systems in such a way that all the systems work in harmony and are resistant to external factors which may cause breakdowns.

As with many technologies, there are multiple sites which offer a definition of System integration.  If we understand what Steve is trying to achieve, we can understand how System integration works.

Steve has a task of integrating 4 different systems in his insurance business.  The business wants to implement new analysis in their organization and they have already many systems in place which are working and gaining momentum day by day.  Steve is given a task to build a simple solution which gets information from different systems and send it to a central reporting system on a regular basis.

In order to do this, Steve has to integrate customer base system, payment system, notification system, claim management system, new registration system, bonus processing system, premium calculation system and receipt generation system.

Of course, these systems are developed and maintained by different vendors, and are a combination of legacy and modern applications, running on Linux, Windows or Solaris.

Steve developed a comprehensive sequence of steps that helped, and listed the goals and objectives of the project various stakeholders in the entire process integration.  Here are the steps he followed.

  • Listed various tasks and associated activities with each and every objective
  • Identified various means and protocols used in communication of different systems
  • Identified and assigned individual groups or a person responsible for a specific activity or activities
  • Identified various systems that need change or that gets affected due to system integration
  • Devised a field dictionary of the message or the message structure that carries the information from one systems to another
  • Identified people who are responsible for development and implementation
  • Suggesting using a cloud based Mule Platform, seen as a market leading solution for its ability to handle complex integrations with ease.
  • Identified the training and learning requirements for the people who are involved in pre and post implementation of integration activity.

If you remember the beginning of this article, you’ll recall that Steve was answering his CIO’s call with confidence that the integration activity is ready for production.  It turns out he was right, as he carried all the above steps, and had a perfect integration process.

The choice of using MuleSoft technologies helped Steve to address the business requirements, whilst being flexible enough to integrate the various legacy system utilized by ABC Corporation.

The fact that MuleSoft help both the developers and the partners to seamlessly connect with multiple systems that are on multiple platforms, meant Steve could complete the project 3 weeks earlier than expected.

If you would like to find out more about how Systems Integration could help you make the most out of your current infrastructure while enabling you to open your digital horizons, do give us a call at +44 (0)203 475 7980 or email us at marketing@whishworks.com

Other useful links:

Integrate Mule ESB with Microsoft Office-365 SharePoint

5 + 1 must have technologies for eCommerce success

Why should Retailers care about Systems Integration

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