What Issues Are There With Multiple Software Applications?
Running more than one piece of software in your business is very common and equally as common are the issues that come with it. The issue that begins to show up with a wide range of programming frameworks is that they don't speak with one another. Every department has the ideal software for them, yet information in one piece of software isn't accessible in another. Since the various systems are not sharing information, individuals need to enter the information physically into every piece of software. This is an exercise in futility and opens the entryway to mistakes, and conflicting information.
A standout amongst the most widely recognized situations is dealing with client data. When a potential client is entered into a CRM system by the sales team so they can follow the customer journey. A sale is made! Woohoo! However, now the client should progress to the billing and customer ticket support system. What's the problem? These are completely different pieces of software. They have different databases and could even be built with a completely different programming language. Due to the pieces of software not communicating with each other, the client data needs to be added manually into both the billing system and customer ticket support system. Not only does this information need to be incredibly detailed, but it must also be 100% correct. I'm sure we can all agree that this is not the most efficient way to run this process.
The client's data will have mistakes, and will not match between the systems. Humans are not the most reliable machines. Then what if the client's data changes? If a client calls to update their telephone number and it must then be done on all 3 systems. This is not only time-consuming, but very inefficient and mistakes can crop up again. A telephone number is only a small example, if accounting data was incorrect or different across multiple platforms then this can lead to major issues.
Connect Software With APIs
An API (application programming interface) allows two systems to communicate with each other. The web page or screen you use to interact with the software is the user interface. An API works in a similar way for software, in which it allows one piece of software to share data with another. An API is not present in every software, but it it is becoming more and more common.
Using the previous example, an API would allow the CRM system to share data with the billing and customer ticket support systems. This prevents the need for manual entry which is often time-consuming and has a high risk of error. Something as simple as an API can make running your business a breeze!
Bridging The Gap
Sadly, it is not that easy and APIs from separate software systems don't always talk to each other straight away. Some systems offer plug-ins or features to connect to specific software applications. However, this is not always the case. That's where we come in.
We have connected to many major software applications and platforms such as Amazon, Xero, Debenhams, eBay, Quickbooks, Facebook, Twitter, OnBuy, 3PL Central and much more. Previously, we have also connected to bespoke software and completely automated many of our client's business processes.