Hybrid Integration, Key to Success in Digital Transformation

Written by Ali Akthar

Technical Account Manager

Organizations are adopting cloud-based SaaS applications at a very high rate. Many organizations simultaneously move existing applications and systems to public and/or private cloud infrastructures. These trends are making hybrid IT environments the “new normal.”

One of the first things to consider as your organization plans for hybrid integration is where to host your integration tools and technology, but before that, the most important thing to consider is the location of systems where they have been placed today, including systems of records like ERP and CRM system, etc. Businesses these days are pursuing digital transformation to achieve a step-change in their speed, agility, and ability to innovate. Realizing the importance of hybrid integrations and considering how the organization plan to expand the IT applications and projects over the next couple of years determine the rate and complexity of moving to the cloud.

Hosting the integrations near the data center is important in order to avoid slowing down integration transactions between applications. The closer your integration is to your applications, the better performance you can expect. The choices are either to host your integration on-premises, in the cloud, or both.

Why Prefer Hybrid Cloud Approaches?

Businesses have made it plain that they want to use public cloud platforms more frequently, particularly infrastructure as a service. However, the migration to cloud platforms is not complete, and this is due to a long-term plan to use on-premises resources. Most businesses indicate that their IT strategy will include a unified hybrid approach, using on-premises cloud resources alongside public cloud infrastructure in an architecture that supports workload portability, as well as the seamless delivery of functions across environments.

Whether organizations consider a hybrid cloud to be a permanent IT solution or an interim step toward an all-encompassing engagement with public cloud platforms, many businesses consider a hybrid strategy as a means of reconciling cloud application development with legacy systems that demand significant process improvement before they can benefit from the strategic functions of cloud platforms both on-premises & off-premises. Hybrid architectures also give these companies the ability to transfer workloads to the cloud or, in some situations, from the public cloud to on-premises settings in order to save money or improve performance.

Hybrid Integration, Key to Success in Digital Transformation

What are the Demands of the Projects?

With an increase in the number of SaaS applications, there is a corresponding increase in the demand for integration projects. Traditional integration teams are struggling to keep up with project demand and might be seen as bottlenecks for the implementation of applications that seem remote to the business teams who are implementing them. High-priority backlog makes departmental-based integration time-to-delivery unacceptable to the business. With this trend, you must consider what approaches you will take to meet the needs of the increase in integration projects while not increasing investments in integration development resources. Consider these approaches:

Hybrid Integration, Key to Success in Digital Transformation

Offer Self-Service Integration

Given the constraints of traditional IT, another option is to think of IT’s role in integration as a service provider, giving departments the ability to do the integration work themselves. This approach requires that IT establish common architectures, services, access, and tools for integration projects and then make these available for use by departmental users. With this approach, IT ensures that the company is protected from potentially disruptive problems that arise from non-experienced users.

Hybrid Integration, Key to Success in Digital Transformation

Increase Asset Re-use

Limiting the quantity of new work that needs to be done is one of the best methods to stay up with integration project requirements. The easiest way to do so is to use your existing integration assets, such as services, mappings, transformations, and orchestrations. One danger in adopting multiple integration solutions for traditional IT integration projects and departmental integration projects is the creation of silos of integration assets. Customers who have historically adopted best practices around service reuse, such as companies that have Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA) initiatives, are often well-positioned to avoid redundant integration work. But even if you do not have an SOA practice, look to leverage any of the assets you can, assuming they are usable by your cloud-based integration tools. As you consider how to keep up with project demand, you should also look at how you can provide more flexibility for different types of integration projects.

Different Approaches for Different Types of Projects

Is it true that non-critical and simple integration costs the same as critical and difficult integration? And is your organization dependent on the integration experts for all integration projects? Let’s look at two trends that are impacting how organizations are approaching integration projects.

Offer Multiple Modes of Integration

Not all integration projects are created equal. Some projects are mission-critical, and some are rapid development projects that might have a short lifespan. Because of this, organizations should consider providing an integration tool for simpler, faster delivery schedules. Bi-modal IT is a term used by analysts and industry thought leaders to describe this trend in application development.

Mode 1 development Mode 2 development
Traditional complex integration projects fall into the category of Mode 1 development. These traditional projects demand stability and require the proper level of planning, testing, governance and architectural review. Historically, all integration projects have been treated this way. Alternatively, Mode 2 integration projects require fast, agile development and likely do not involve mission-critical systems. Mode 2 integration development is for rapid and innovative projects, typically driven by the business. These types of projects are where “citizen integrators” or non- integration specialist developers are typically involved in integration projects.

Offer Multiple Modes of Integration

Not all integration projects are created equal. Some projects are mission-critical, and some are rapid development projects that might have a short lifespan. Because of this, organizations should consider providing an integration tool for simpler, faster delivery schedules. Bi-modal IT is a term used by analysts and industry thought leaders to describe this trend in application development.

Mode 1 development
Traditional complex integration projects fall into the category of Mode 1 development. These traditional projects demand stability and require the proper level of planning, testing, governance and architectural review. Historically, all integration projects have been treated this way.
Mode 2 development
Alternatively, Mode 2 integration projects require fast, agile development and likely do not involve mission-critical systems. Mode 2 integration development is for rapid and innovative projects, typically driven by the business. These types of projects are where “citizen integrators” or non- integration specialist developers are typically involved in integration projects.

Adopt Internal APIs for Integration

In some circumstances, using APIs as a way of application integration may make sense, as it provides non-integration professionals with the tools, they need to integrate applications while removing the requirement for particular skill sets. Most IT developers are familiar with leveraging APIs to build new services and connect systems. However, if the necessary amount of governance is not in place, this technique can lead to the types of "spaghetti" integration diagrams that have plagued IT departments for decades.

Hybrid Integration, Key to Success in Digital Transformation

Conclusion

Royal Cyber is the leading system integrator that provides consulting on Hybrid integrations as well as provides thought leadership in this space both from implementation and delivery capability. At Royal Cyber, our business experts will review your existing infrastructure approach, application integrations, on-prem applications, legacy systems, and cloud-native apps to better propose the best possible hybrid approach for your businesses.

We are a professional IT services firm that offers customized solutions based on the needs of the client. If you want to learn more about Hybrid integrations or are looking for a partner who can help you get the most out of it, please contact us at [email protected] or visit www.royalcyber.com.

Leave a Reply

Live Chat