8 trends in integration, APIs and master data management


Software AG released its findings on top trends in integration, APIs and master data management based on an analysis of its own sizable customer base's actions. The results reveal how businesses are attacking the problem of the need for speed. Faster transformation, after all, is not only key to remaining competitive but to surviving an ever-changing marketscape.

"Digital transformation cannot happen quickly enough. In 2016, we will continue to see this digital trend as consumer behavior further drives change and puts a question mark on every business model. I believe there are eight key trends that we will see arise through the year," said Navdeep Sidhu, senior director, Integration & API Management Product Marketing for Software AG, in the announcement.

The eight trends he sees are:

  • Everything goes hybrid. Not just clouds, but integration and cloud management too. He says this round will be "real hybrids," not just a mashup of public and private clouds.

  • RAML fades and Swagger becomes the API standard. Sidhu thinks RAML (RESTful API modeling language) will fade over time and the Swagger API framework will rise as the dominant standard. He believes initiatives like Open API will drive that trend shift.

  • Self-service style on-boarding for APIs will drive integration. Data access is becoming increasingly complicated and Sidhu thinks self-service style APIs will prove to be the simplifier and drive integration. Yes, it's do-it-yourself integration!

  • Bimodal goes mainstream. Citizen developers, citizen integrators and IT teams will work peacefully as one and integration models will come together too, he says.

  • Big data finally pays off – through integration. "Increased integration of existing systems with newly acquired Hadoop platforms will unlock the hidden value, enabling Big Data to finally be used to make smart decisions to improve customer satisfaction," said Sidhu.

  • DevOps-friendly microservices will replace monolithic architectures. The microservices movement will gain momentum until they finally smash legacy architectures to smithereens.

  • IoT data becomes key element in customer master record. Customer-360 is about to expand to include data from IoT for a better view of customers. That synchronization and consolidation of information will become a key requirement for MDM.

  • MDM gets smarter. Master data management will get smarter and integrate more into the interface as a result such as BI tools, dash-boarding, work views and app interfaces.  

While this analysis was limited to Software AG customers, it jives with what I'm seeing in the field.

Cloud sprawl is a serious problem now. Integration and serious cloud management is thus rapidly becoming a necessity. Without that, clouds become the new data silos and big data takes a huge step backward.

Collaboration and cooperation will further tear down walled gardens even in the sacred halls of IT. The marrying of citizen developers and IT teams through bimodal platforms, methinks, is inevitable.

And yes, DIY is increasingly becoming a driving force in business, not only in self-service everything internally, but in customer-driven changes too ranging from product customization to customer service personalization. Buh bye, customer service canned responses and scripts!

Are you seeing these trends too? Share your thoughts and in the comment section below.

For more:
- see the press release
- read the blog post
- check out Swagger's webpage

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