Is a software integration right for my business?

By Angus McDonald - 07/12/2020 8:03:00 AM

At its very core, software integration is an effort to combine various software systems to operate together as one cohesive system. It is commonly driven by the desire to achieve an overall result that derives input from different tasks performed by more than one software sub-system.

To determine whether software integration is relevant to your business, you have to look beyond just its theoretical outcomes. Here are a few questions to ask yourself before you embark on a software integration journey:

To what extent is software a part of my business operations?

For certain businesses, software is a really small part of how they conduct business. You may find that they are only using a few desktop or mobile apps to manage their social media accounts.

Or maybe they use one spreadsheet software to record inflows and outflows but don’t even use its formulae for any calculations.

However, in many other cases, a business has a multitude of software they are using day-to-day. An email management tool, a database management system (DBMS), calling software, project management tools etc.

If your business happens to rely on a number of software tools for different tasks, especially if business would come to a stand-still in a situation where some of these tools fail, a software integration might be right for you.

software integration

How related are the numerous processes within your business?

Ask yourself things like; Does the tool I use to design vases need customers’ contact information to produce better results? Do I need to access my suppliers list in the same tool where I keep track of my inventory?

But even more importantly, understand the work product you need at the end of a particular process and whether other processes feed into it.

If for instance you want to entice certain dormant customers to redeem their loyalty points/discounts/coupons so you can increase sales, you may need multiple types of data.

This will include your list of customers who have loyalty points, the time since they last shopped, the most recent products they viewed, the time they were last contacted, the place that brought them to your site (social media ad links, search engine results) etc.

And you might also need other details like age, location and more if you’re to properly reel them back in. In such a scenario, it’d be nice to have one interface from which you can view just about all this information.

Bottom-line, a business goal that requires you to source different kinds of data from multiple areas such as your marketing automation tool, product catalogue and current inventory database, discount apps etc. may be the perfect opportunity to perform a software integration.

What are the benefits of software integration?

You should also look at some of the benefits of software integration and see how they resemble what it is that you’re trying to achieve with your current set of software systems:

· One of the major benefits is the ability to use data produced by a particular application in a bunch of other applications.

· You can also increase efficiency since all business operations can be viewed from one central interface, saving time spent dealing with different interfaces during querying and other processes.

· A software integration may enable a business to make better guided decisions on how to acquire, retain and satisfy customers.

· Beyond actual business operations, software integration can help you cut down on the IT costs that come with maintaining multiple software systems and databases.

Always consider these three aspects when contemplating a software integration for your business.


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Tags: CRM Software, Integrations, software integration, software