Integrating Disparate Applications at the Client Level
One product I really enjoy working with and thinking of ways to use is ILINX Integrate. The product is designed to bridge the gap between separate applications on the client side with no custom applications. If you can administer an ECM solution, configuring ILINX Integrate should come easily. ILINX Integrate is installed and configured at the client level so there is no need to modify the Line of Business or other external application. In a nutshell what the tool is designed for is passing data from one application to another. If you have implemented a server side integration in the past, think about it: how many hours were spent designing, implementing, and testing the integration? How many groups were involved and had to sign off on the idea of an integration before you could even start thinking about designing it. Personally I think that is the biggest benefit of an ILINX Integrate implementation, the ability to link two applications without having to make any changes to the applications you are integrating. From my experience the application owners don’t care, once they hear it is client side and no change will be made to the application they cease to be involved. Of course there is a flip side to this; every workstation you want to have the integration configured on will need to be touched. The product can be installed and configured remotely, but still there is a level of effort there.
It can be rather simple to decide whether ILINX integrate or a server side integration is a better fit. First off, can the applications you want to pass data between be modified or is there a built in mechanism for transferring data? If no, then a product like ILINX Integrate might be the only option. The other criteria for deciding if ILNX Integrate might be a fit is how many clients would need the proposed integration? If it is just a single work group or department that needs the integration, is it worth the level of effort to create the integration versus the cost of ILINX Integrate. The same applies to an enterprise implementation: compare the estimated level of effort for implementing a custom integration versus the estimated level of effort to distribute and manage ILINX Integrate to clients across the enterprise.
Examples of integrations ILINX Integrate can perform are:
- External database validations of data for applications that do not have the functionality built in. Any ODBC compliant database is accepted. For example, your ECM application does not have a mechanism for validating data integrity at input. With ILINX Integrate a data validation can be configured, a data validation can be configured by either adding a ‘floating’ button on the desktop or tying into an existing button on the screen.
- Transferring data between applications. Eliminate the need for Copy and Paste, configure ILINX Integrate to do that for you. I see this being deployed in a multitude of applications. For example, think about the last time you purchased a car. The dealership had to type in your data into a number of different systems: the lending system, manufacturer system, accounting system, etc. With an ILINX Integrate floating button they could type the data in once, click the button, and have it entered into all the disparate systems.
- Seamlessly integrate an ECM application (Oracle IPM, IBM FileNet, Microsoft SharePoint, etc) with your Line of Business application (JD Edwards, PeopleSoft, SAP, etc.). Right now users might be pulling up a record in the LOB application then manually navigating to their ECM application and performing a search. With ILINX Integrate that task can be performed automatically by tying into a button on the LOB page or screen, or adding the ‘floating’ button.
- There are many other tasks that ILINX Integrate can kick off automatically. Navigating to a dynamically built URL with data supplied from integrating application, there a number of file manipulation tasks, and decryption and encryption of data. There are many more tasks ILINX Integrate can be configured to perform as well.
I know I might have come off a little ‘salesy’ here but this is one of those products that achieves the main goal of virtually every project I have ever been involved with – save time and thus money. For more information about the product look at our product page for ILINX Integrate or contact us here for a demonstration.
It seems like every company I walk into these has some sort of “line of business” system that the employees are interfacing with on a daily basis. I can see where a tool like this can save valuable time for a worker by creating an integration between the LOB system and the doc management system, and the best part is that there is no required modifications to the “line of business” system. Thanks for the information.