With the ever-increasing amount of information from internal and external sources and the need for timely intelligence to remain ahead in the competition, integrating hundreds of external business partners with internal business processes, services, applications, and data becomes a cumbersome task for organizations. Integration brokerage (IB) services come in handy for organization in integrating and managing complex data. The IB services transforms cloud as a platform for multi-enterprise partnerships to offer new and innovative products and services to customers. Integration brokerage can be termed as a category of IT outsourcing for the integration of cloud and supply chain integration. Integration brokerage establishes a rapport between cloud-based B2B integration infrastructures with people and processes to help companies manage cloud and B2B integration projects. IB gained popularity over the years as it maintains the data reliability for organizations using multiple on-demand B2B software services, SaaS, PaaS or IaaS and the resulting silos they create.
Why Integration Brokerage?
Integration brokerage manages the complex task of not only connecting and managing multiple clouds but also integrates and manages data between clouds and on-premise applications. IB simplifies the on-boarding and usage of cloud services while providing the added benefit of aggregating, normalizing, customizing and enhancing business information in the cloud. In other words, IB makes the task of IT department easier and enables them to focus more on improving business processes.
Factors Driving the Usage of IB
- Old infrastructure:Investments made by companies in legacy integration products are at the end of their product life and most of the companies are hesitant to invest in costly replacements.
- Innovation:Existing solutions are not able to cater to the demands of new capabilities such as analytics and others by companies
- Complexity: Companies avoid complex tasks and want maximum ROI on minimum investment, they consider integration task to be challenging and time-consuming thereby opt for outsourcing.
Benefits of IB
- IB improves capabilities such as managing access to the cloud, performance reporting, or security.
- It combines and integrates multiple services by providing data integration or securely moving data between multiple cloud providers.
- They aggregate services such as checking various cloud services for competitive shipping rates or providing access to multiple e-mail services.
- It provides multi-enterprise solutions that embed IB such as vendor-managed inventory, analytics and data management
- It can be used as an ancillary component of ERP update or consolidation projects.
- It can be used as an enabling feature for multi-enterprise SaaS solutions.
- It can be used as an enabler for specific process automation such as e-invoicing.
With the increasing pressure of competition and shrinking margins, companies are hard pressed to cut investment and maximize their ROI with available resources. With the growing popularity of cloud services, integration brokerages have emerged as an important instrument for companies as they plan their strategy in quest of ROI by tapping into cloud services and data-as-a-service offerings. IB is capable of not only managing the complex task of data integration and data management between different clouds but also frees the bandwidth of IT personnel to focus more on the core task of improving business processes in order to achieve organizational goals.