Never before has it been more important for CEOs and CIOs to leverage information technology to automate their businesses. Increasing the operational efficiency of the existing workforce will be one of the primary drivers of business growth for years to come, and IT will be the means to deliver this.
This demand for process automation is creating a boost for BPM (Business Process Management) and BPA (Business Process Automation) products. Products like IBM Business Process Manager, Oracle Business Process Management or the new Visual Workflow from Salesforce.
So what does automation have to do with API-enabled applications?
Well, in order to improve workforce efficiency, business processes must be streamlined and manual processes must be fully automated.
This means that every application in a business process flow must be able to talk to other applications automatically, and until now the only way applications could talk to each other was through APIs.
So if you had no APIs, you could forget about automation. If you have been using any of the standard BPM products on the market, you know what I’m talking about. Basically this barrier is the biggest flaw with all of the existing BPM products — they depend on APIs that often don’t exist.
And it gets worse:
New web-based business apps are being cranked out at higher and higher volume. These applications are everywhere: inside your business, residing in the cloud (SaaS apps), and at your business partners’ or customers’ (B2B apps) locations. These are the applications that power some of the most important processes in your business:
- Pricing Comparison
- HR Processes
- B2B Processes
- Financial Account Aggregation
- Supply Chain Optimization
- Data Collection
- Regulatory Compliance
- Competitive Price Monitoring
- Social Media Monitoring
- Marketing Intelligence
- Financial/Equity Research
- Legal Evidence Collection
- Management Reporting
These applications, more often than not, do not have documented APIs, making integration and, therefore, business process automation, almost impossible until now.
But there is a new approach to quickly API-enable any application in order to automate your business processes.
An enterprise-class application integration platform like Kapow Katalyst features a built-in Automation Browser that lets you wrap any web application as if it already had a documented API — essentially API-enabling the application and making it ready for those important automation projects.
This not only eliminates the need to rewrite internal applications, but also eliminates the challenge of working with external applications you cannot rewrite such as B2B and SaaS apps. With Kapow Katalyst you can create a complete integration or automation solution extremely efficiently.
Back to the Myth:
To automate business processes you need your applications to be API-enabled.
True for standard BPM products, False if you use Kapow Katalyst.
Let’s improve business efficiency today.
Stefan Andreasen, founder and CTO, Kapow Software
By: Stefan Andreasen