Your business is distinctive, if not unique. You have your way of doing things. How can any one software solution be right for you, in that case? A lot of the time, what works best is to build a unique solution by integrating your ERP with other solutions as the use case requires. For example, because you may have previously standardized on Salesforce.com for Customer Resource Management (CRM) and Acumatica cloud ERP (which has its own robust CRM) for operations management and accounting.
Ideally, you want those two separate solutions to work together. For example, when you generate a customer quote in Salesforce, you might want that quote to flow right into Acumatica as a customer order so you can start building the product with a production order once the customer says yes. To do this, you need flexible application integration.
Application Integration. Not New. Getting Easier.
Connecting one application to another is far from new. It’s been possible since the 1960s. However, in the old days, which ended around 2013, application integration was a complex, expensive hassle. It wasn’t anyone’s fault. It was just that way. Software makers had their own proprietary methods of communicating with their applications. Setting up an interface between two applications usually required custom coding or the use of a proprietary “middleware” package.
This started to change around the year 2000. The first attempt at openness was the innovation known as “Service-Oriented Architecture” (SOA), which leveraged open standards like Simple Object Access Protocol (SOAP) to connect applications. This was a well-intentioned effort, revolutionary for its time, but still a bit of a slog when it came to actual implementation.
Today, we have standards-based Application Programming Interfaces (APIs). Based on standards like Representational State Transfer (REST) and JSON, they have succeeded, at long last, in enabling pretty much any two applications in the world to exchange data or procedure calls without the need for custom coding or a dedicated project team to realize. For Acumatica, the API is the starting point in truly flexible, open integration.
The Open API
Building a unique ERP solution is relatively simple using open APIs, which are also sometimes called “Public APIs.” An open API is available publicly. In contrast, some software companies and cloud services keep their APIs private. A private API might have all the same standards-based accessibility of an open API, but it’s off limits except to those the owner deems eligible for access. This is not an approach that’s conducive to building a unique ERP solution.
Acumatica provides open API that allow for integration with minimal developer involvement. Through the standards, Acumatica’s open APIs deploy what amounts to a universal language for unparalleled access to multiple software services and data. Advantages of this open approach include a reduction in data silos and better efficiency in the integration process. Connecting Salesforce, or any number of third-party apps or cloud services, to Acumatica, is remarkably quick and simple.
Getting to a Unique ERP with RESTful API-Driven Cloud-to-Cloud Integration
Acumatica’s Ajoy Krishnamoorthy, VP, Platform Strategy, said, “We don’t think that data should live and die within the boundaries of ERP.” Cloud-to-cloud integration emerges as one of the greatest potential areas for success in this regard. In our work, we see many customers who use multiple cloud services to run their businesses. They might have Microsoft Office 365 and Salesforce along with industry-specific cloud-based services. If they can tie these services together in alignment with their unique workflows, they will achieve positive business outcomes.
The open API makes it possible to connect one cloud-based service to another. In some cases, it doesn’t even take a software developer to execute the integration. But, it may still require some expert advice. Integrations only help business when they follow optimized business processes. We can help.