Tag Archives: Right-Time Data Integration
People have begun to realize that integration is a key requirement for a successful SaaS application deployment. Since a SaaS application like Salesforce CRM resides in the cloud (it is hosted in a data center outside your company’s firewalls), customers need to move their critical corporate data like customer, product or pricing information into Salesforce before they can use the application and provide maximum value to their end users.
They also need to keep the data in Salesforce synchronized with the rest of their on premise applications in order to maintain operational efficiency and provide timely and accurate information flow throughout their enterprise.
So how difficult is it to integrate Salesforce with on premise applications, and how should it be done? Well, for starters, salesforce.com provides a complete set of well documented APIs that make it straight forward for a good software programmer to accomplish that task.
Those same APIs are also used by integration vendors to provide more flexible, powerful and manageable solutions that accomplish the same task without requiring the same level of programming skill. (more…)
In one of my earlier posts I discussed the need for a sophisticated data services-driven technology serving as the foundation for SOA and BPM.
“Data and processes are intertwined. It will fundamentally change the way organizations think about your roles, and your roles are going to need to evolve”.
At this year’s Data Management Association (DAMA) International Symposium,
Michael is quoted saying that:
“In this world there’s a very loosely coupled user interface from the assembled services that in turn share access to data. SOA exposes data issues to more people, places and processes, and what I tell companies is that without a focus on information management and meta data management they’re going to fail.”
It is in speaking to numerous customers, prospects and technologists that I had gathered that without accurate, consistent and timely information, SOA and BPM deployments will face serious information-centric hurdles, affecting the cost-effectiveness and success of the project. As we move towards more agile architectures, I believe that we need to grow typical process-centric approaches to include information centricity as well.
As Michael states:
“Where we are going is beyond the first generation of BPM and SOA [that is process-centric],” he said, “to the next generation of SOA that is information-centric.”
Observe that the key word here is “information-centric.” Reading such statements from Michael and many others definitely validates the strategy I have been defining for building out an effective IT infrastructure that can benefit from the flexibility of a services and process-driven approach, in the data integration layer. Simply wrapping data access with a web service does not qualify as a sophisticated data service and hence, stringing together such simple services with a BPM tool also does not guarantee agility.
As discussed in Services to Orient your Enterprise Data Layer, Joe McKendrick is of the opinion that neither SOA nor enterprise-application integration alone can effectively handle the enterprise data layer. However, data services delivered within an SOA framework can create a data-abstraction layer to address the complexities seen across enterprise data environments.
I have always said that without serving up good quality, consistent and timely information as a data service or a comprehensive data service built using a sophisticated data integration platform, SOA and BPM deployments will not be able to deliver on their promise of agility.
What are your experiences? What kind of information-centric issues have you run into in your service-oriented deployments? Is inaccurate, stale and inconsistent information passing through your IT infrastructure holding you back?
In one of my earlier posts I mentioned that in order to effectively enable business agility, businesses need access to information at the speed of business, or what is called “right-time” information.
In that post I had also introduced the terms “Right-Time Information” and the “Information Latency Continuum.”
In the recently concluded TDWI World Conference in San Diego, my colleague John Haddad recorded a podcast with Claudia Imhoff where he spoke on data latency issues, including the need to deliver data in real-time so organizations can operate at the “speed of business.”
Listen to John Haddad speak about the “Information Latency Continuum” and the business value of timely and accurate information delivered across a range of latencies, real-time, near real-time and batch.