“In information technology, systems integration is the process of linking together different computing systems and software applications physically or functionally, to act as a coordinated whole.”
With modern businesses, there are many sources of information. It is often difficult to keep all these sources up to date. Often it will happen that one part of the business will have to re-key information into another system. This is an incredible waste of time and why it is important to have good system integration.
There are many systems that are available for businesses that are low cost and extremely effective, for instance Accounting Systems, CRM (Customer Relationship Management) Systems, etc. The systems provide essential services for any business but in isolation they are of limited value.
There are also other sources of information such as the Internet, web pages, twitter feeds, location information. Integrating these sources of information into the business can add significantly to the level and richness of control. Integrating into the correct part of the business is important and often challenging.
Mintec has had many years of experience integrating various systems for our customers.
Systems Integration - Previous Projects
Background: CCI has an unusual business in that they manage the insurance premiums for several hundred constituents. Each constituent may have assets worth millions of dollars. By pooling their insurance premiums, CCI achieves significant reductions in costs for their constituents.
What was required: The insurance premium part of the business was separate from the accounting part of the business. One of the problems with having so many constituents was that there was a large number of people to contact, and this contact information needed to be changeable and shared across these systems. Also, whenever an insurance premium was calculated for a constituent through the insurance system, an invoice had to be raised through the accounting system, two disparate systems in need of integration.
Background: A call centre needed to cope with the recording of large volumes of information in response to TV advertising.
What was required: The details of people calling in needed to be recorded quickly and accurately and a process put in place to ensure sales staff called the prospect back within a certain time. These procedures defined the marketing model of the company. Failure to meet these goals had serious implications for the performance of the organisation.
What a System Integrator must consider
There are several aspects to system integration that must be considered by the system integrator, these include:
- Matching data
- Master source of data
- Timeliness of updates
- Physical interface mechanisms
- Transport medium
- Value of interface
For more information on these aspects, click here.