Beyond Integration: Discovering the Benefits of API Management, Master Data Management and Workflow Automation

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Many companies turn to integration to solve specific problems, such as connecting one business application to another. But Boomi integration platform as a service (iPaaS) offers much more than a low-code development environment for quickly building point-to-point connections.

Boomi also enables SMBs and enterprises to publish and manage APIs, enforce data quality with master data management, and automate workflows.

To appreciate the importance of these other features, let’s consider a topic that might seem unrelated to data integration and data management, but which turns out to depend on them heavily. I’m referring to the customer experience.

To learn how API management, master data management, and workflow automation can be used to improve the customer experience, please join us for a free webinar on November 15, 2017.

Data Management and Customer Experience

What is customer experience? It’s the total sum of conscious events from a series of interactions between a brand and a customer. Customer experience matters because customers can switch brands in a mobile minute. With a few taps of the cell phone, your brand can fail.

Customers are exposed to customer experiences every time they run an app, open a web page, read an ad, or visit a store. And customers will only stick with those brands that deliver good experiences — fast, frictionless and effective.

That’s why Gartner vice president and distinguished analyst Tiffani Bova says, “Customer experience is the last source of sustainable differentiation and the new competitive battleground.”

Improving customer experience has become a top strategic priority for leading companies across multiple industries.

Build Your Customer Experience

How do you build a great customer experience? There are many requirements, including clean, efficient design, but from a data management point of view organizations must ensure:

  • Completeness of data
  • Streamlined workflows

Completeness of data means bringing all the relevant data together. In an ecommerce app, it might mean tying together order details, shipping information, up-to-date delivery schedules, and special offers based on customer preferences.

In a financial services app, it might mean collecting transaction histories from accounts at multiple institutions and including reminders about upcoming bill payments.

Completeness of data enables customers to make the most informed decisions. It eliminates guesswork and the need for your customers to log in to multiple apps or make multiple calls to your support staff.

Workflow automation usually involves transferring data from one person or system to another. Accordingly, automation usually requires data connections.

Imagine a mobile app for an insurance company. The app allows customers to make payments on their policies. It also allows them to submit claims. For example, if a policyholder is involved in a fender bender, he can use the app to take a picture of the damage and submit claim data on the spot.

When a claim is submitted, it travels through many IT systems in the insurance company, such as Box (file storage), Salesforce (customer records), and Twilio (phone calls, text messages, and other communications). These applications work behind the scenes. The policyholder simply works with an easy-to-use app, which can record the time and geolocation of the accident.

Compared to the paperwork and phone calls that were required for submitting claims in the past, the policyholder enjoys a much better customer experience.

Once a policyholder experiences this quick, easy way of submitting claims, they would be unlikely to switch to another insurance company if it didn’t offer a similar mobile app.

The Importance of API Management, Master Data Management, and Workflow Automation

These examples highlight the importance of integration and data management capabilities beyond simply connecting applications. Specifically, they highlight the importance of:

  • API Management
    Organizations must publish, manage and connect to APIs. For example, a financial service app needs to connect to the APIs of multiple institutions to centralize information about all the accounts belonging to a customer.
  • Master Data Management
    Organizations need to identify the source of master records for each type of data and ensure that data is consistent across applications. For example, an ecommerce app needs to ensure that it gets prices from the right source, or confusion could result.
  • Workflow Automation
    Organizations need an easy, low-code way of designing and building automated workflows. For example, the workflow for submitting an insurance claim from a mobile app should be designed with minimal programming. Eliminating long hours of custom coding helps organizations automate more workflows more quickly, improving operational efficiency and the customer experience. Also, business analysts and other non-technical stakeholders can play a direct role in designing workflows based on their subject matter expertise.

To learn how API management, master data management, and workflow automation can be applied through Boomi iPaaS, please join us for a free webinar on November 15, 2017.

In this webinar you will learn how Boomi helps you:

  • Integrate cloud, on-premise and legacy applications seamlessly
  • Move, manage, govern and orchestrate data to accelerate business agility
  • Modernize legacy services and systems in minutes

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