Forbes called 2017 the year of the API economy for its ability to support new business models. Not only that, a recent report by Deloitte tells us that APIs are critical because they empower businesses to focus on the efficient and secure exchange of data, instead of getting hung up on the delivery methods. APIs or (Application Programming Interfaces) are defined as a set of definitions, protocols, and tools for building application software. APIs set methods for communication between various software components. This includes real-time integration between on-premise, legacy systems, and cloud platforms and apps. Looking ahead, most believe APIs will continue to be the method of choice for powering the free exchange of data for applications which is needed to support the digital economy. The Internet of Things (IoT), machine learning, and artificial intelligence all rely on APIs. Scott Buchholz, Federal Chief Technology Officer at Deloitte, explains.
“While we’ve seen a rise in using [APIs] to exchange data between enterprises and between organizations, we’re actually starting to see a rise in people using them within their organizations. “That’s where a lot of the power of APIs is being unlocked.”(Source: Deloitte).
Today APIs are being built and leveraged to simplify and accelerate the integration process, removing the need for complex and manual coding efforts to get systems, applications or platforms to exchange information and to ‘talk’ to each other. When done right, APIs can significantly shrink deployment windows and improve automation and collaboration between partners, vendors, and customers.
Building integration ‘fast lanes’
That’s why TechLink has focused heavily on expanding its integration capabilities through APIs. TechLink has introduced APIs that connect its in-house CRM app, SIMPL, and its technician-centered app MOBI into providers’ systems. These APIs provide an ‘integration fast lane’ that includes a pre-built set of instructions for linking systems together. For those providers considering an installation partner to help create a real competitive advantage, look for those that deliver superior customer support and more efficient ways of doing business.
- Greater automation and simplified integration- TechLink’s API-centric strategy allows for simplified integration into suppliers’ ordering systems, applications, and other platforms. When suppliers’ ordering systems can talk directly with TechLink’s MOBI application and customer portal, barriers between disparate enterprise systems are erased and real-time communication and collaboration is possible.
- Eliminating data entry- With TechLink’s API software, installers no longer have to manually collect and retype customer data at each project site. Instead, technicians have instant access to the customer order through an integration with the supplier’s system. And once on site, using TechLink’s MOBI portal installers can look up relevant order information, making notes and changes on the fly. This integration results in greater automation, fewer trips to customer sites, accurate project tracking, and ultimately faster installation.
- Delivering a more seamless customer experience- By linking supplier systems with TechLink applications, customers receive a higher-level of service, compared to conventional providers. For example, recently TechLink was able to deliver a multi-site SD-WAN project for a national retailer customer−which included upgrading 4000 customer sites across the country. TechLink and the supplier have successfully met 4-hour SLA requirements with help from more efficient data and information exchange.
If your organization would like to learn more about how APIs can help your organization deliver more efficient and high-value services, contact us! TechLink has a skilled team of professional installers and experienced project managers with extensive web and mobile software development experience ready to chat. Give us a call!