Think Like an Integrationist

Posted by Dave Reyburn on Oct 13, 2020 10:18 AM

Integrationists Wanted

This is the first in our three-part series, “Integrationists Wanted.” The series examines the essential role EDI, MFT, EAI and API specialists can play in helping to create value and competitive advantage for companies and organizations in an era of economic disruption.

At Remedi, we’ve been all in on system and business integration as a corporate and competitive strategy since 1994 when we all did was EDI.

With EDI accounting for 78% of all B2B ecommerce and seven trillion dollars in sales in 2019, according to research from Digital Commerce 360, EDI continues to lead in driving supply chains and revenue transactions here and abroad. Yet, a suddenly and radically changed integration and ecommerce landscape needs more than EDI to give businesses the agility they need to move forward from pandemic-related disruption.

Integration is More Than EDI (And So Are You)

During the early weeks of Covid-19 when efforts to contain the pandemic forced the lockdown of enterprises in all industries, EDI professionals kept the wheels on the wagon of the global economy. That said, today’s digitally driven economy— and your company—need people who can think beyond EDI-- like an integrationist. By the way, “integrationist” isn’t a title—it’s a mindset.

It refers to IT professionals—and anyone else— who aren’t interested in integration technology for its own sake but in how EDI, MFT, EAI, and APIs can cut costs, reduce duplicate effort, and add value to customers. In short, those who see how integration can become a competitive edge, not just a collection of acronyms, rules, and standards few outside of IT circles understand.

In the modern era, Amazon is a primary example of an enterprise using technology as the means to achieve its growth targets while delivering on customer and shareholder expectations at scale. For a look at integration from a broad array of perspectives, check out the more-timely-than ever presentations from our 2019 Midwest Integration Forum we held last fall.

Integrationists See Past the Present 

Based on the work we’ve performed in the first half of 2020, we can say with confidence that agility and being competitive in the post-pandemic economy means an integration infrastructure that offers real time visibility for users, trading partners, and customers.

In our next installment, “Disrupt or Perish: How Integrationist Thinking Can Drive Growth,” we’ll share how one client went from a small, traditional EDI team of five to a staff of more than 40 including a full-blown DevOps shop that today builds and manages the APIs in their library.

In the meantime, start your journey by getting out of your area and visiting some LOBs, or spend a day with folks in customer service. Find an unmet need or unsolved problem and start there. Your company needs you to think past EDI—even if they don’t know what that looks like yet.

All they need is an integrationist to show them.