Build an Application Integration Strategy

Level the table before assembling the application integration puzzle or risk losing pieces.


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Your Challenge

  • Even though organizations are now planning for Application Integration (AI) in their projects, very few have developed a holistic approach to their integration problems resulting in each project deploying different tactical solutions.
  • Point-to-point and ad hoc integration solutions won’t cut it anymore: the cloud, big data, mobile, social, and new regulations require more sophisticated integration tooling.
  • Loosely defined AI strategies result in point solutions, overlaps in technology capabilities, and increased maintenance costs; the correlation between business drivers and technical solutions is lost.

Our Advice

Critical Insight

  • Involving the business in strategy development will keep them engaged and align business drivers with technical initiatives.
  • An architectural approach to AI strategy is critical to making appropriate technology decisions and promoting consistency across AI solutions through the use of common patterns.
  • Get control of your AI environment with an appropriate architecture, including policies and procedures, before end users start adding bring-your-own-integration (BYOI) capabilities to the office.

Impact and Result

  • Engage in a formal AI strategy and involve the business when aligning business goals with AI value; each double the AI success rate.
  • Benefits from a formal AI strategy largely depend on how gaps will be filled.
  • Create an Integration Center of Competency for maintaining architectural standards and guidelines.
  • AI strategies are continuously updated as new business drivers emerge from changing business environments and/or essential technologies.

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See how all the steps you need to take come together, with tools and advice to help with each task on your list.

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Get to Action

  1. Make the Case for AI Strategy

    Obtain organizational buy-in and build a standardized and formal AI blueprint.

  2. Assess the organization's readiness for AI

    Assess your people, process, and technology for AI readiness and realize areas for improvement.

  3. Develop a Vision

    Fill the required AI-related roles to meet business requirements

  4. Perform a Gap Analysis

    Assess the appropriateness of AI in your organization and identify gaps in people, processes, and technology as it relates to AI.

  5. Build an AI Roadmap

    Compile the important information and artifacts to include in the AI blueprint.

  6. Build the Integration Blueprint

    Keep a record of services and interfaces to reduce waste.

Guided Implementation icon Guided Implementation

This guided implementation is a four call advisory process.

  • Call #1: Uncover business drivers for integration

    Identify risks and issues, along with mitigation plans to help bolster the program, and define KPIs that will be used to measure the success of the program.

  • Call #2: Interpret your organization’s AI readiness assessment results

    Identify gaps that will need to be addressed in people, process, and technology as a plan is developed.

  • Call #3: Validate the requirements, architectural vision, and identify common integration patterns

    Accelerate implementation and promote consistency across the environment.

  • Call #4: Validate the gap analysis, initiative composition, and strategic plan

    Understand the resourcing requirements and constraints.

Onsite Workshop

Module 1: Make the Case for AI Strategy

The Purpose

Uncover current and future AI business drivers, and assess current capabilities.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Perform a current state assessment and create a future vision.

Activities: Outputs:
1.1 Identify Current and Future Business Drivers
  • High-level groupings of AI strategy business drivers.
1.2 AI Readiness Assessment
  • Determine the organization’s readiness for AI, and identify areas for improvement.
1.3 Integration Service Catalog Template
  • Create a record of services and interfaces to reduce waste.

Module 2: Know Current Environment

The Purpose

Identify building blocks, common patterns, and decompose them.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Develop an AI Architecture.

Activities: Outputs:
2.1 Integration Principles
  • Set general AI architecture principles.
2.2 High-level Patterns
  • Categorize future and existing interactions by pattern to establish your integration framework.
2.3 Pattern decomposition and recomposition
  • Identification of common functional components across patterns.

Module 3: Perform a Gap Analysis

The Purpose

Analyze the gaps between the current and future environment in people, process, and technology.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Uncover gaps between current and future capabilities and determine if your ideal environment is feasible.

Activities: Outputs:
3.1 Gap Analysis
  • Identify gaps between the current environment and future AI vision.

Module 4: Build a Roadmap for Application Integration

The Purpose

Define strategic initiatives, know your resource constraints, and use a timeline for planning AI.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Create a plan of strategic initiatives required to close gaps.

Activities: Outputs:
4.1 Identify and prioritize strategic initiatives
  • Use strategic initiatives to build the AI strategy roadmap.
4.2 Distribute initiatives on a timeline
  • Establish when initiatives are going to take place.

Workshop Icon Book Your Workshop

Onsite Workshops offer an easy way to accelerate your project. If you are unable to do the project yourself, and a Guided Implementation isn’t enough, we offer low-cost onsite delivery of our Project Workshops. We take you through every phase of your project and ensure that you have a road map in place to complete your project successfully.

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