Integrations are connections between the systems and applications you use every day for the regular function of your business. If your integrations aren't built properly, they can cause significant problems.
This article will describe how you can get the most out of your integrations.
Getting the Most Out of Your Integrations
Integrations come in a variety of forms. Most organizations rely on integrations between systems used by different departments to ensure the business runs smoothly. For example, the financial department may rely on a payments and CRM integration to track payments from specific clients.
Regardless of the function, the benefits of integrations are clear. They save you time and effort by automating tasks that would otherwise be manual, and they make it easy to keep all your data in one place.
The challenge when integrating systems and applications is ensuring data flows freely and accurately across your technology ecosystem. If an integration isn't configured correctly, it can cause significant problems in your workflows.
To get the most out of your integrations, there are a few things you should keep in mind.
First, you must ensure that your integrations are built on a solid foundation. We regularly recommend HubSpot as a sales, marketing, and service platform because it's designed with integrations in mind. HubSpot also forms partnerships with scores of solution providers, so many apps can be integrated into it easily.
Second, you need to make sure that your integrations are well-designed and well-executed. A poorly designed or executed integration can cause more problems than it solves. Integration projects may require multiple phases, user testing, and quality assurance before they are complete.
Finally, it's a good idea to keep your integrations well-documented. This will help you (or someone else) understand how the integration works, and what to do if something goes wrong.
Naturally, if you build your integration will the help of A8, we'll be able to generate all the documentation you need to maintain your integrations. We'll even help you test and optimize your integration to ensure it provides value to your business.
Creating and Managing Advanced Integration Projects
A8 uses a tried and tested integration building model for managing advanced integration projects. Out model involves eight phases. These are:
- Project Scoping and Solutions Design
- Integration Building
- Q/A & Testing
- User Acceptance Training
- Data Reconciliation
- Post-Deployment Live Support
- Project Completion
Here's how each of these phases works during an advanced integration project.
Project Scoping and Solutions Design
The first phase involves understanding your specific needs and requirements. Our team will investigate the connectors that can make your integration possible, then design a solution that will integrate seamlessly with your existing systems.
We'll also provide you with an outline of how your integration will work and what resources will be required to complete the project. We'll identify the entire scope of the project and the investment you'll need to make.
Once you approve the design, we'll build the integrations according to the specifications laid out in the previous phase. We'll also develop the testing environments necessary to ensure your integration works properly.
Q/A & Testing
In this phase, we test the integrations to make sure they work as intended. We'll engage in a quality assurance process on our end, then work with you to answer your questions.
This phase is important to minimize downstream issues with your integration. By the end of this phase, you and your team should be confident in the work we've completed.
User Acceptance Training
An integration is only as powerful as the people who use it. In this phase, we train your users on how to use the integration. We won't move forward until they are comfortable with their new systems and processes and confident in the benefits they will provide.
Deploying your integration is perhaps the most important step in the process. We'll work during your off-hours (including weekends and nights) to move your integration from the testing environment to your operational ecosystem. By the time you log in, you'll be able to start using your new system without interruptions.
Your integration should support not only your new projects but also the projects you started before it. During the data reconciliation process, we'll backfill all your historical data so that any objects preceding deployment are updated. This is essential to ensure data is synchronized across your ecosystem.
Post-Deployment Live Support
It's typical to have questions about how your integration works after you start using it. We'll provide live support after the deployment and data reconciliation phase to answer any questions, provide on-the-spot training, and troubleshoot any issues you may have.
We'll only close out the project when the previous phases are complete, and only if you're satisfied with the results. After project completion, we'll offer you ongoing services and additional support to ensure you get the most out of your integration.
Start Your Next Integration Project with A8
Integrations are essential to the success of your business, but they can be complex and time-consuming. A successful integration requires careful planning and execution.
At Aptitude 8, we have a team of experts who can help you scope, design, build, test, deploy, and manage your integrations. We'll work with you to understand your specific needs and ensure that your integrations are built to last.
Contact us today to get started.