For enterprises that decide to undertake a digital transformation exercise, the resultant change in application portfolio and the need to have an agile and flexible integration architecture supporting that, means that many businesses are looking at iPaaS solutions.
Business leaders are becoming more aware of the need to break down data silos (repositories of data that are isolated from the rest of the organization) both internally and with trusted business partners. The ability to implement integrations quickly and cost-effectively makes iPaaS an attractive solution.
Having got over their initial reluctance, many businesses are now adding cloud solutions and this is leading to the growth of a hybrid – on-premise plus cloud – infrastructure.
Gartner’s 2014 report commented that iPaaS buyers were not central IT departments but rather business units, this was based on their view that iPaaS is:
an agile approach focused on short time to deployment, and addressing informally and incrementally defined requirements, as opposed to traditional integration approaches
However, this is not born out by the interactions we have had. IT departments seem to be well aware of the need to manage a hybrid architecture and are using an iPaaS to address it.
While the cloud has been the trend that IT pundits discuss, there are still lots of on-premise systems. In our discussions with IT decision makers, the advantage of iPaaS is that it makes it easier to connect between in-house on-premise systems and those on-premise applications used by business or supply chain partners.
According to the sessions on our website, there has been a significant growth in interest in creating and deploying APIs as a way of connecting applications. We are seeing users (both customers and trial users) using specific Connectors, and Flowgear’s generic Web Request node, to build APIs more quickly and easily.
Over the last four years, we have see a segmentation of the iPaaS market as a means of differentiation. This has been on different dimensions including industry sector, application type, company size, and also technology. In Flowgear’s case, our business focus is on the SMB (small and midsize) sector, but we also have a technology differentiator – our platform is based on .NET, as opposed to other platforms that are built on Java. For Microsoft-oriented developers, our platform is easier to work on.
The other change we have seen in the iPaaS market is that regulated industries now considering iPaaS. Only a few years ago, financial services would not look at an iPaaS due to concerns about data security and integrity. However, as the perception of the security of public cloud providers has improved, so regulated industries are starting cloud strategies, although it might be private cloud implementations of iPaaS.