The process, where more than one business process or software are brought together for purposes of data sharing, is called integration. Technological innovations in the twenty-first century has given rise to increased business processes and systems which have in turn posed a challenge to companies in terms of management work. For each of the different systems an organization owns, there will be a difference in the data inputs as well as the data outputs. More frequently, there exists great correlation among systems and business processes since data outputs in one system are used as inputs to another system or process. Owing to this therefore, there is need to amalgamate business processes and systems through software integration. Integration plays a major role in streamlining business operations as well as in cost management of an organization. A good integration of a system should carefully follow the following important paradigms.
Firstly, continuous integration pattern should be observed for any system integration. This pattern ensures that integration is ongoing even after the first integration is conducted. Once integration is adopted, new systems and processes should be able to be integrated to the integration solution adopted. Because of this, the company doesn’t have to purchase another integration solution in the future and is thus saved of this cost. Also, this model ensures that integration work that may arise in the future is autonomous and is independent of the development team and thus ensures that the established integration solution is not interfered with.
Secondly, any integration model should lay a special emphasis on the subsystems in an organization. The subsystems form the components that shall be integrated together. A good practice of integration should ensure that the individual components are dependent and are not linked to any existing subsystems. Consequently, this makes integration work a chain of small tasks which can individually be monitored and troubleshoot easily.
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Thirdly, configuration control should also be exercised. Configuration control outlines the steps that each stakeholder of an integration process should follow. The process directs on the right software and hardware tools to be used during the integration process. This is the process that serves as the reference point for the creation of all the integration configurations and should thus be adopted and exercised carefully.
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In conclusion, it is important that all the specifications of the subsystems are followed during the integration process. The requirement specifications are the how-to information necessary for the understanding a component clearly before it can be added to the integration process. The specifications also define the component’s behavior in an integrated environment and its relationship with other components. The system specifications also outline important things like the data formats acceptable by the component, the expected inputs and outputs among many other things.