Salesforce’s MuleSoft conducted a survey of 1,050 IT leaders from global enterprises in partnership with Vanson Bourne to understand the IT strategies and gains from digital transformation. The survey revealed that businesses increased their application usage by 10% in the 12 months prior to over 1,060 on average. Unfortunately, fewer than a third of those apps were integrated, leading to rising costs, duplicated work, productivity bottlenecks, and disconnected experiences. Thirty-six percent of those surveyed, who all work at organizations with at least 1,000 employees and hold at least a managerial position in an IT department, said integrating siloed apps and data was their biggest digital transformation challenge.
Applications Integration: A Challenge for Digital Transformation
Matt McLarty, Chief Technology Officer at MuleSoft, attributed integration woes to older or incompatible platforms. The statement indicates that these platforms were not designed to work well with APIs. Sometimes application builders neglect user connections, while others intentionally create hooks for APIs, according to his explanation. McLarty added that the need for robotic processes may well be due to antediluvian applications that only allow integration through a user interface. Robotic process automation allows a component to act like a person using the user interface to provide an integration.
APIs and Low-Code Capabilities for Nontechnical Users
API integration and low-code tools can empower non-technical users to easily integrate applications and data sources. Virtually all of the respondents said they use APIs to integrate applications and data to create exceptional customer experiences and generate revenue. On average, based on survey responses, organizations are generating 38% of revenue from APIs, compared to 35% a year ago. Furthermore, 75% of organizations now have a top-down API integration strategy.
MuleSoft found that top-down strategy for API integration allows for greater efficiency across an organization, as it can lead to agile software that can be “reused” for different applications. The study found that, on average, 47% of organizations’ internal software assets and components are available to developers for reuse. Companies’ embrace of low-code and no-code frameworks are tacit acknowledgments of the imperatives of a booming digital economy: there aren’t enough coders and developers to go around.
Efficient Processes and Supporting Non-Tech Workflow
MuleSoft found that robotic process automation is enabling teams to automate business processes and tasks, with 33% percent of organizations investing in the technology and 92% of organizations saying at least one department within their company requires both integration and automation.
While developers, IT operations and application administrators are most likely to be responsible for automating business processes, per the study, departments that reported a need for automation were:
- Data science (64%)
- Product (62%)
- Business analysts (61%)
The need for automation was also high among human resources and marketing teams.
Witnessing advantages of automation is possible for departments, from data entry and administrative tasks to decision-making functions. Combining automation with integration and APIs increases the potential for improving business processes.
The importance of integration and automation
The study by MuleSoft highlights the importance of integration and automation in achieving digital transformation. OData silos from un-integrated applications can create cost, productivity, and experience issues for organizations. Thousands of applications can be affected.
Automation, meanwhile, can help organizations improve efficiency and streamline processes. By automating repetitive or time-consuming tasks, employees are free to focus on more high-value work that requires creativity and critical thinking.
However, simply investing in more applications or automation tools is not enough. To achieve true digital transformation, organizations need to have a strategy in place that includes using APIs and other methods to integrate their applications and automate their processes.
The study by MuleSoft highlights the importance of integration and automation in achieving digital transformation. While organizations may have thousands of applications, if they are not integrated, the resulting data silos can create a number of issues. Automation, on the other hand, can help organizations improve efficiency and streamline processes.
To achieve true digital transformation, organizations need to have a strategy in place that includes using APIs and other methods to integrate their applications and automate their processes. This includes a top-down API integration strategy that allows for greater efficiency across an organization, as well as low-code and no-code frameworks that empower nontechnical users to easily integrate applications and data sources.
By taking a strategic approach to digital transformation, organizations can improve their productivity, efficiency, and customer experiences, ultimately driving growth and success in the digital economy.