When your software tools and applications are consolidated, you can access to centralised data that supports you to make good decisions about your business and its operations. Learn more about how you can use enterprise application integration to help you achieve cohesive data sets.
Image by vectorjuice on Freepik
Enterprise Application Integration (EAI) is the process of connecting your software applications and systems so that they can communicate and share data. EAI is a form of integration focused on your enterprise applications, tools and solutions.
EAI can help you improve efficiencies, identify future trends and work out which areas of your business you need to focus on for growth. A middleware integration tool is used to integrate all of your enterprise applications. The middleware integration tool scans your software and presents data in a standardised format. Middleware can include a number of data integration tools and application servers.
EAI can also involve integrating cloud-based applications and services, which can add an additional layer of complexity to the process.
Effective EAI requires careful planning and coordination to ensure that all applications are integrated seamlessly and that data is transferred securely and accurately. When done correctly, EAI can help you to improve productivity, reduce costs and improve your agility in responding to changing business needs.
Enterprise Application Integration (EAI) is important for your businesses if you have a diverse information network and infrastructure. Your EAI can coordinate information, enabling data to flow and connecting data from what might seem initially to be incompatible systems.
EAI can help your business to:
How to scale enterprise application integrations
Another important way that EAI can help your business grow and thrive is through scalability. When you have an EAI framework in place, it is much easier to add any new applications or systems to your network. You don’t need to worry as much about compatibility or how any new systems will work with those older ones. In most cases, your EAI enables you to implement specialised and new software solutions that can easily make up part of your overall information infrastructure. It always pays to check the integration capacity of any new software you intend to acquire.
Your business might have any number of enterprise applications already running. Software considered to be enterprise applications can include your:
Many organisations have already recognised the benefit of an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Tool. An ERP is used to consolidate information from different sources, but doesn’t necessarily offer true system integration.
Most ERP systems can only go so far in terms of the systems they can span and process. Many businesses have unique and customised apps that have been designated to help them meet specific or unique business needs. However, these systems often operate outside of the ERP tool that has been employed. An EAI tool has capabilities more and complex back end systems.
There are several types of enterprise application integration (EAI) that are commonly used to connect disparate systems and applications including:
Point-to-point integration: Sometimes also known as Standard Data integration – combining and collating data from multiple sources into a single, unified format. Data integration can be achieved using tools such as Extract, Transform, Load (ETL), and Data Replication.
Hub and spoke integration: A middleware integration through which software is used to connect multiple applications, through a centralised hub to which other systems are attached. Examples of middleware include bus–based integration such as an Enterprise Service Bus (ESB) or a Message Oriented Middleware (MOM).
Service-oriented architecture (SOA): SOA is an architectural approach that uses web services to integrate discrete applications. SOA creates a standardised approach to data exchange and provides greater flexibility and scalability than traditional EAI approaches.
What are the trends for enterprise application integration for the future?
There are so many possibilities for EAI, and for enterprise businesses there are new developments and opportunities arising all the time. Here are the trends we predict for enterprise application integration:
Enterprise Application Integration (EAI) can provide many benefits to businesses, but there are also some potential drawbacks to consider.
Data integration should be approached in a standardised and consistent way, using best practices and established methodologies. This includes using common data models, standardised naming conventions, and consistent data mapping and transformation techniques. Successful EAI implementation requires careful planning, execution, and ongoing maintenance. To achieve successful EAI implementation you should:
Pimcore is an open-source enterprise application that provides a number of solutions in one. Pimcore can manage the processes and tasks associated with:
With all of these capabilities already available in one solution, Pimcore is a great choice as a starting or central application for your business. It provides a fantastic foundational tool, eliminating the need for multiple programs to carry out these process, access and storage tasks. Pimcore uses centralised data and content at its core to strengthen relationships between your business, your data and your customers. It makes an excellent foundation for enterprise operations and is successfully used that the heart of many digital strategies.
Pimcore can be used to carry out integrations with SAP, Oracle ERP, Salesforce, and almost every external system or application you might have in place, to create a single source of truth within your network. Pimcore can import and exporting CSV data for one or two-dimensional data models. It can also process data through imported and exported in CSV and excel sheet formats.
Data virtualisation allows you to integrate data in real-time and provides a unified view of the data, without requiring a central repository. This technique involves creating a virtual view of the data from different sources without actually copying or moving the data. The data does not have to be transformed. Instead, the data virtualisation tool delivers you the data you need without having to access it from a central repository. Data virtualisation can handle varied data sets in different formats and with differing latency.
BPM is a comprehensive approach to managing business processes that includes EAI as one of its components. BPM integrates disparate applications to automate business processes and workflows. EAI and BMP are complementary approaches for streaming data and enabling automations.