It’s Finally Time to Integrate and Modernize These Five Enterprise Workflows

How should CIO and IT leaders improve employee experiences in 2022? What’s the next frontier to improve hybrid working by reducing toil, improving work quality, and enabling employees to focus on the most important aspects of their jobs?

CIOs and IT leaders should target transformation two steps beyond single-platform automations and slapping together RPAs. It’s time to take a ride up the elevator, look down at the technology landscape, and take steps to modernize workflows and integrate systems.

Modernize Enterprise Workflows - Isaac Sacolick

Five Enterprise Workflows to Modernize in 2022

So, let’s look at some of the hills to climb and mountains to move around integrations and workflow modernizations. Let’s start with a basic one that impacts every organization.

1. Enable configurable, seamless, and faster employee onboarding experiences

Onboarding is now a prime issue as many enterprises require rapid hiring to rebuild their workforces. Give a new employee a poor experience, and maybe they consider taking that other job offer that came in two days after they accepted yours. And hiring lots of people can overburden the staff if there are too many steps and clicks to complete the workflow.

Look for platforms that specialize in connecting to finance, HR, IT, and other applications to support onboarding and offboarding workflows. The challenge for many organizations is that onboarding isn’t a one-employee-fits-all workflow, and the setup must be configurable to support different employee needs across departments and geographies.  

2. Integrate front and back-office systems to support growth

How do businesses like a growing confectionery company and a wallet manufacturer gain a competitive edge by integrating their sales, financial, manufacturing, fulfillment, and distributions systems? The specific challenges and opportunities may differ for these businesses, but having a single integration platform that becomes the data fabric across their primary systems enables them to scale operations as they grow.

In one example, the integration platform enables connecting the ERP to operational systems, providing real-time visibility into inventory and fulfillment status. On the other hand, the integration improves the quality of service by using computer vision to match what goes into the shipping box with the customer’s orders. 

3. Simplify approvals with automation and centralize the experience

A finance manager might have to visit one system to approve procurements, another for new hires, and a third to sign off on a vendor contract. She may receive emails from all three systems, but she loses time accessing, reviewing, and completing workflows in them. And all have vastly different user interfaces for her to learn and sometimes relearn as platform vendors make changes.

Now imagine IT uses an integration platform to connect to these systems and a low-code platform to present the finance manager a single pane of all her outstanding approvals. Not only does this simplify her experience, but it also accelerates signoffs by enabling her to approve anything from anywhere using a mobile interface. 

4. Support ERP modernizations, cloud migrations, and M&A

IT has some large systems, which are often mountains to climb when upgrading or modernizing them. You don’t upgrade an ERP’s workflows in one shot, move all the applications to the cloud in one deployment, or integrate a newly acquired business into all systems simultaneously.

IT must often keep multiple systems running in parallel, which usually means sharing data between these operational systems during lengthy transition periods. An intelligent automation and connectivity platform that connects to the most common enterprise and SaaS simplifies integration between legacy ERP with its successor, a new version of a mission-critical app deployed to the cloud, or two ERPs after an acquisition.

These integrations provide business leaders, architects, and program managers the flexibility to schedule and orchestrate upgrades based on priorities and risks.

There are several related use cases when large businesses want to scale their operations and support multiple instances of SaaS and enterprise systems. For example:

  • DevOps teams can create integrations to keep development and testing systems up to date with production data. 
  • Compliance leaders can specify real-time data replications from primary systems into archives and disaster recovery environments.
  • Global organizations can keep primary transaction data in the country of residence while integrating or replicating shareable data with a centralized system. 

5. Join data across marketing, sales, IT, and other departments

It’s fairly common for departments to use multiple systems to track their work. For example:

  • Marketing teams seek data from Marketo, Google Analytics, and Shopify to update their digital marketing strategies. 
  • Sales teams review data from Salesforce, NetSuite, and Zuora to get a complete picture of what customers bought and which products to upsell.
  • IT teams connecting data from ServiceNow, Jira, Azure, and AWS to connect DevOps teams on the status of apps in development and production.

It’s one thing to integrate the workflows, but it’s equally important for business analysts to understand the data, prep new data sources, and create master entities. Intelligent automation platforms that support data catalog and prep and creating master data hubs help data analysts, subject matter experts, and IT connect and leverage data from multiple systems.

Chances are, your organization has integration gaps, and homegrown efforts to connect APIs, workflows, and data across systems aren’t cutting it. It’s slow to develop and hard to support integrations as platforms upgrade and workflows evolve. Integration platforms can greatly impact large enterprises and medium businesses looking to drive collaboration, efficiencies, and growth.

This post is brought to you by Boomi.

The views and opinions expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views and opinions of Boomi.

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