Welcome!

Release Management Authors: Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, David H Deans, Liz McMillan, Jnan Dash

Related Topics: Microservices Expo, Java IoT, Agile Computing, Release Management , @CloudExpo

Microservices Expo: Article

How to Enhance Applications to Support Business Agility (Part 2)

Soaring with the cloud – “no software” doesn’t mean “no integration”

Sustaining applications in the most cost-effective and efficient fashion is the foundation to maximizing a return on data. But it is only the foundation. Organizations have to move beyond sustaining applications to driving innovation, and the first step in that progression is learning the best ways to enhance existing applications and implement new applications that will help modernize business processes and support business agility.

The challenges around enhancing applications are well agreed upon. The top challenges include:

  • Insufficient Data Quality - Data quality issues of one degree or another are pervasive in the majority of enterprises, leading users to distrust the data. This is a problem within applications and, even more so, across applications.
  • Right-Time Access to Information - The pace of business continues to accelerate, and users can no longer wait weeks or days for information necessary to perform their jobs. If business users need immediate access to fresh and trusted information in the applications they use every day, IT must find ways to provide it.
  • SaaS Sprawl - As more and more applications move to the Cloud, IT needs to be proactive in maintaining visibility and control over SaaS applications and their data, including the ability to easily integrate them with on-premise applications. After all, "no software" does not imply "no integration."
  • Successful Data Migration to New Applications - As organizations implement new applications, existing data must be moved quickly and smoothly to the new apps, on time and on budget, so that dependent business processes are not negatively impacted.

Building Trust in the Data with Automated Data Quality
The core reason why business users lack trust in their data is because that data resides in data silos across multiple systems and, when it is delivered to them, it is all too frequently inconsistent, incorrect and incomplete, not to mention late. This impacts both day-to-day data usage as well as strategic usage. For example, Procurement processes need consistent and correct data on vendor price and performance in order to negotiate favorable contracts, as well as data that is timely in order to either drive or block purchase requisitions and payments to vendors per their adherence to their contracts.

Hence, the first step to modernizing business processes is to enhance application quality with trusted, authoritative data that is predictable, valuable and timely, regardless of how many source systems it is being drawn and integrated from.

Integrating data quality processes into the overall enterprise data integration process is a definitive step for any organization looking to build user trust in their data. This is as simple as introducing automated data cleansing that can be leveraged by all applications across the company. A further step is introducing proactive data quality monitoring capabilities into the hands of data owners, so they participate in improving the quality of their information.

The payoff comes with users spending less time reconciling data and more time working with it.

Ensuring Right-Time Delivery with Data services
Ensuring that the right information is delivered at the right time to the right person is another formidable challenge, but one that can be solved, and data services provide the solution within the context of a service-oriented architecture (SOA). Traditional SOA approaches lack a data integration layer. Anything that cannot be handled by a simple Web service, such as complex data transformations or data cleansing, requires hand-coding and proprietary interfaces, which are things one wants to avoid.

Data services, on the other hand, present a discrete set of sophisticated data integration tasks that support the entire data integration life cycle. These data services can be readily consumed as Web services by the various components of a SOA, and also by composite applications and portals. The complexity of the task is hidden, plus the data services can be easily published to SOA registries and repositories.

Results? Organizations using data services have reported up to five times faster delivery of new data, and cost savings of up to three times. This means that these organizations are able to respond faster to changing information demands, increase IT project success rates, and even deliver comprehensive single customer views on-demand to help drive new revenues and increase customer satisfaction.

Soaring with the Cloud - "No Software" Doesn't Mean "No Integration"
SaaS application spending, as everyone knows, is soaring. As a result, more and more companies need to find ways to support hybrid IT infrastructures that span cloud and on-premise applications and make them work seamlessly together to maximize the return on all enterprise data. And this requires data integration.

Cloud applications have to integrate with other systems in order to provide full value. At the same time, integration needs to happen in a secure fashion lest IT lose control of enterprise data assets. Fortunately, appropriately designed cloud data integration will support hybrid IT environments, essentially by extending unified, enterprise-class data integration services to the cloud.

Things to look for when supporting hybrid IT include a "secure agent" that provides the ability to create and securely manage all aspects of integration jobs, which can be shared between on-premise and cloud deployments. While the agent can be invoked via a web browser, what it does is establish a secure connection between data source and data target and all data integration processing occurs on-premise in the enterprise environment for maximum IT control.

Ensuring the Success of New Applications Through Efficient Migration
As organizations modernize their systems and business processes, they find that migrating data to their new applications is not usually a slam dunk proposition. All data migrations are inherently risky and subject to the lack of suitable tools, skills, knowledge of the data, and an access, validation, and audit strategy. Moreover, there is a lack of tools and processes to help business stakeholders and data users ensure and verify that the data is actually fit for use.

Having the right technology platform and skills goes a long way toward ensuring an on-time and on-budget migration. Knowledge of the data that is being moved is critical to each step of the migration process and ultimately is key to ensuring that the migrated data actually "works" in the new application. Having an infrastructure that supports change during the migration process is mandatory. And active business involvement is the hallmark of every successful migration. Hand-coding, using the wrong migration methodology, and relying strictly on IT are all pathways to migration time and money overruns or outright failure.

In selecting a migration platform, you want to ensure it provides:

  • Connectivity to the broadest range of environments and databases
  • Built-in data quality profiling, cleansing, and transformations (for all data types)
  • Fast, easy development, updating, and reuse of transformations
  • Easy auditability of the data from source to target

From Application Enhancement to Business Transformation
The above steps, from building trust in data to ensuring the success of new applications, all speak to enhancing applications to drive business process modernization and business agility. The next leap is to transform applications and, by extension, to transform the business, to drive innovation and growth. Much of what is accomplishable to enhance applications is leveragable when transforming them, but there are also new and highly valuable things to accomplish, as will to be seen in Part 3 of this article.

More Stories By Adam Wilson

Adam Wilson is the General Manager for Informatica’s Information Lifecycle Management Business Unit. Prior to assuming this role, he was in charge of product definition and go-to-market strategy for Informatica’s award-winning enterprise data integration platform. Mr. Wilson holds an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management and an engineering degree from Northwestern University. He can be reached at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter @ a_adam_wilson

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@ThingsExpo Stories
DX World EXPO, LLC, a Lighthouse Point, Florida-based startup trade show producer and the creator of "DXWorldEXPO® - Digital Transformation Conference & Expo" has announced its executive management team. The team is headed by Levent Selamoglu, who has been named CEO. "Now is the time for a truly global DX event, to bring together the leading minds from the technology world in a conversation about Digital Transformation," he said in making the announcement.
"Space Monkey by Vivent Smart Home is a product that is a distributed cloud-based edge storage network. Vivent Smart Home, our parent company, is a smart home provider that places a lot of hard drives across homes in North America," explained JT Olds, Director of Engineering, and Brandon Crowfeather, Product Manager, at Vivint Smart Home, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Conference Guru has been named “Media Sponsor” of the 22nd International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. A valuable conference experience generates new contacts, sales leads, potential strategic partners and potential investors; helps gather competitive intelligence and even provides inspiration for new products and services. Conference Guru works with conference organizers to pass great deals to gre...
The Internet of Things will challenge the status quo of how IT and development organizations operate. Or will it? Certainly the fog layer of IoT requires special insights about data ontology, security and transactional integrity. But the developmental challenges are the same: People, Process and Platform. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Craig Sproule, CEO of Metavine, demonstrated how to move beyond today's coding paradigm and shared the must-have mindsets for removing complexity from the develop...
In his Opening Keynote at 21st Cloud Expo, John Considine, General Manager of IBM Cloud Infrastructure, led attendees through the exciting evolution of the cloud. He looked at this major disruption from the perspective of technology, business models, and what this means for enterprises of all sizes. John Considine is General Manager of Cloud Infrastructure Services at IBM. In that role he is responsible for leading IBM’s public cloud infrastructure including strategy, development, and offering m...
"Evatronix provides design services to companies that need to integrate the IoT technology in their products but they don't necessarily have the expertise, knowledge and design team to do so," explained Adam Morawiec, VP of Business Development at Evatronix, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
To get the most out of their data, successful companies are not focusing on queries and data lakes, they are actively integrating analytics into their operations with a data-first application development approach. Real-time adjustments to improve revenues, reduce costs, or mitigate risk rely on applications that minimize latency on a variety of data sources. In his session at @BigDataExpo, Jack Norris, Senior Vice President, Data and Applications at MapR Technologies, reviewed best practices to ...
Widespread fragmentation is stalling the growth of the IIoT and making it difficult for partners to work together. The number of software platforms, apps, hardware and connectivity standards is creating paralysis among businesses that are afraid of being locked into a solution. EdgeX Foundry is unifying the community around a common IoT edge framework and an ecosystem of interoperable components.
Large industrial manufacturing organizations are adopting the agile principles of cloud software companies. The industrial manufacturing development process has not scaled over time. Now that design CAD teams are geographically distributed, centralizing their work is key. With large multi-gigabyte projects, outdated tools have stifled industrial team agility, time-to-market milestones, and impacted P&L stakeholders.
"Akvelon is a software development company and we also provide consultancy services to folks who are looking to scale or accelerate their engineering roadmaps," explained Jeremiah Mothersell, Marketing Manager at Akvelon, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
"IBM is really all in on blockchain. We take a look at sort of the history of blockchain ledger technologies. It started out with bitcoin, Ethereum, and IBM evaluated these particular blockchain technologies and found they were anonymous and permissionless and that many companies were looking for permissioned blockchain," stated René Bostic, Technical VP of the IBM Cloud Unit in North America, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Conventi...
In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Carl J. Levine, Senior Technical Evangelist for NS1, will objectively discuss how DNS is used to solve Digital Transformation challenges in large SaaS applications, CDNs, AdTech platforms, and other demanding use cases. Carl J. Levine is the Senior Technical Evangelist for NS1. A veteran of the Internet Infrastructure space, he has over a decade of experience with startups, networking protocols and Internet infrastructure, combined with the unique ability to it...
22nd International Cloud Expo, taking place June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and co-located with the 1st DXWorld Expo will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud ...
"Cloud Academy is an enterprise training platform for the cloud, specifically public clouds. We offer guided learning experiences on AWS, Azure, Google Cloud and all the surrounding methodologies and technologies that you need to know and your teams need to know in order to leverage the full benefits of the cloud," explained Alex Brower, VP of Marketing at Cloud Academy, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clar...
Gemini is Yahoo’s native and search advertising platform. To ensure the quality of a complex distributed system that spans multiple products and components and across various desktop websites and mobile app and web experiences – both Yahoo owned and operated and third-party syndication (supply), with complex interaction with more than a billion users and numerous advertisers globally (demand) – it becomes imperative to automate a set of end-to-end tests 24x7 to detect bugs and regression. In th...
"MobiDev is a software development company and we do complex, custom software development for everybody from entrepreneurs to large enterprises," explained Alan Winters, U.S. Head of Business Development at MobiDev, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Coca-Cola’s Google powered digital signage system lays the groundwork for a more valuable connection between Coke and its customers. Digital signs pair software with high-resolution displays so that a message can be changed instantly based on what the operator wants to communicate or sell. In their Day 3 Keynote at 21st Cloud Expo, Greg Chambers, Global Group Director, Digital Innovation, Coca-Cola, and Vidya Nagarajan, a Senior Product Manager at Google, discussed how from store operations and ...
"There's plenty of bandwidth out there but it's never in the right place. So what Cedexis does is uses data to work out the best pathways to get data from the origin to the person who wants to get it," explained Simon Jones, Evangelist and Head of Marketing at Cedexis, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
SYS-CON Events announced today that CrowdReviews.com has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 22nd International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 5–7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. CrowdReviews.com is a transparent online platform for determining which products and services are the best based on the opinion of the crowd. The crowd consists of Internet users that have experienced products and services first-hand and have an interest in letting other potential buye...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Telecom Reseller has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 22nd International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. Telecom Reseller reports on Unified Communications, UCaaS, BPaaS for enterprise and SMBs. They report extensively on both customer premises based solutions such as IP-PBX as well as cloud based and hosted platforms.