By Henning Lund - February 14, 2022
Businesses typically start data integration projects to optimize business processes. Naturally, they want to minimize costs while picking up the right data integration tool to do the job.
Sticking to a budget will always be an issue. No business wants to end up with an expensive piece of software that doesn’t do what they need it to.
Finding the most relevant way to integrate data between your systems might not be the easiest task. Often, businesses have very specific processes and requirements, and as a result have made many customizations to their systems.
Also, when selecting the right system integration solution, you must make sure that it can be fitted to your business needs and requirements.
One of the choices to be made is between a custom API integration and a standard data integration platform. Find out if a custom-developed solution is the right fit or if you can use an off-the-shelf integration platform.
This article will compare the two different data integration approaches and investigate the pros and cons of each solution.
Many believe that a custom API integration system is the better choice, but data integration platforms offer flexibility and functionality that are hard to beat. Especially when you want to do Salesforce integration or Microsoft Dynamics integration.
API stands for Application Programming Interface. In simple words, an API is a software that lets two systems or applications communicate with each other.
APIs make it possible to integrate two systems and ensure data transfers between them. Custom API refers to the process of customizing existing APIs to meet a business’s specific needs or requirements.
API Management is the collection of processes that allow for distribution, analysis and control of the APIs that connect your applications.
There can be many API management requirements. Handling these can be done using API management solutions.
While a custom development might cost more to set up, it is likely to be a cheaper solution to maintain over time. The reason is that in a custom API integration, you cannot be sure what the maintenance costs will be as the business develops. Things change all the time as businesses grow, and that could mean that much more maintenance is needed than first appears.
Also, custom development often only includes a small amount of, or sometimes no, additional functionality for scheduling, error handling or monitoring.
These things could be included at no extra cost in an integration platform. This is the case if you choose RapidiOnline as your data integration solution. Adding them to a custom platform after setup can be a substantial extra cost.
Data integration platforms have a reputation as being an expensive option. This is an undeserved prejudice. A high level analysis however often shows that it is cheaper for most businesses to use a system integration platform.
It is likely that this reputation comes from the early days of data integration. The first tools that were used to transfer data from one system to the other (for example ETL or extract, transform and load) were expensive and only offered limited functionality. They were far from drag and drop solutions.
As a result, in the early days of data integration, custom integrations were often both cheaper and more effective.
Nowadays, the tools used include development, operational processing and integration functionality. There are many affordable data integration options available, for businesses small and large.
With the rise of big data, data warehouses, data lakes etc, it has become vital for companies worldwide to make sure they control and consolidate their data.
Data integration platforms make it far easier for businesses to develop simple and effective data transfers no matter the data sources. They are fast, user-friendly and robust, often much more than custom integrations are.
On the other hand, custom integrations are rarely the best solutions in the longer term.
In the early days, data integration platforms could be difficult to implement. Today, a Salesforce Microsoft Dynamics ERP integration can be up and running in just three to 10 days using cloud-based data integration tools such as RapidiOnline.
Often, data integration platforms are cheaper than custom builds, but what about their other benefits? Data integration platforms are no one-size-fits-all solutions. However, they have proven data integration capabilities. Platforms are usually highly flexible.
Being data-driven has become a strategic direction for many businesses. Data transfers, international data transfers, control access, real-time transfers are on every tech executives’ minds.
Top management teams all over the world have to think about data management and transformation, data processing without compromising on data quality.
Data integration platforms help companies integrate systems together, for example their salesforce CRM and their Microsoft Dynamics 365 ERP. Data integration platforms provide a solution to companies’ data integration needs. They also have to maintain high performance of the systems.
A data integration platform such as RapidiOnline comes with pre-configured endpoints to integrate Salesforce with Microsoft Dynamics AX, NAV and GP. This means that you can:
Data integration platforms are the better approach for the vast majority of businesses. There will always be some businesses that need a custom-build, but a data integration platform is customizable enough that it can work as well or better for the majority.