Building Data Agility with Deliberate Reuse of Boomi Assets
As an enterprise architect, project manager, or developer, one of your focuses is to improve your organizations’ operations and insights. Not surprisingly, as your organization generates more data from more systems, the ability to efficiently satisfy your operational and analytical data need also increases.
Boomi as a platform is highly oriented towards simplifying data-related problems, and it’s the platform to get data from its source to where it generates value. Using Boomi, you can build your organization’s data agility capabilities and capacity.
As defined by Big Compass, Data Agility is the ability to quickly move and combine data for better insights and operations. With Boomi, you can build deliberate data agility with reusable assets and consistent approaches.
Reuse can mean many things for different platforms. Still, the idea is the same, put forth a more deliberate development effort upfront to create reusable features that ease the workload and reduce technical debt as the environment matures and grows. With an iPaaS system like Boomi, it can also reduce development costs and time.
Whether you’re referring to Integrator, Data-Hub, Data Catalog, or data movement, the platform is geared towards simplifying pain around Data Agility with reuse.
Integrator is the core of Boomi, and it provides several implementations that encourage and deliver reuse.
The Integrator implementation premise is based on connectors. Utilizing variables, you can extend and reuse one connector for different environments. Standardizing how you use variables will enhance reuse.
Libraries are another implementation method that allows you to build reuse in your Boomi environment. By prebuilding processes to interact with specific applications in your organization, you can give others a quick way to merge new applications or build their own processes using yours as a model or guide.
A practical application of reusable processes is implementing a hub and spoke integration pattern for API interaction with a data warehouse. You can also prebuild processes to push data in for sources that may not use the API, particularly if it’s a consistent schema with pre-defined tables. If you’re going from database to database, building an integration and providing an example SQL statement with pre-defined mappings lets the developer reuse the process, shortening development time and effort. Similarly, if you are using a flat-file integration with an S3 bucket or an SFTP server is required, you can similarly provide prebuilt profiles and processes that enable the developer to align their output to fit integration needs.
Integrator also works well for companies building information products. With Boomi, you can create reusable and prebuilt Boomi libraries that give detailed examples of interacting with your products API. This helps your customers get off the ground faster and improves the overall product experience.
While Integrator is the core element of Boomi, it isn’t the only area that supports reuse and data agility. Here are other beneficial areas of Boomi.
Using Data-Hub, you can consolidate golden records to what we refer to as a “Conforming Schema.” This technique offers an overarching model that is common across multiple applications. While this may seem obvious to data-oriented professionals, there is a benefit for this technique to be used across your development teams. The process of combining like records not only lowers your golden record count but decreases the overall load and simplifies data exploration. The conforming schema approach reinforces reuse.
The evolution of this technique is to expose the data hub using reusable services such as an API. This makes data more accessible across platforms and lowers the onboarding load for new users of Data-Hub.
As the tool itself is a strong APIM, reuse is already encouraged. Going the extra mile to ensure there isn’t API overlap will promote good governance and reduce overhead.
Plainly speaking, each application shouldn’t need its API to access data sources, and cataloging the APIs in your system to reduce overlapping functionality can simplify the environment quickly. A best practice is establishing a generally used integration pattern (i.e., hub and spoke) for each source system.
Boomi also helps with reuse in EDI. Although EDI is very point-to-point oriented, Boomi can encourage reuse by helping to simplify the data and reducing extraneous information. This lowers system load and cost.
This Boomi tool is ideal for exploring your companies’ data and deciding what redundant APIs or services can be eliminated or restructured for reuse. You can use it to start asking pointed questions: Where does the data live? Does the same data appear in multiple databases, can it be centrally managed?
Understanding your data and analyzing how it can be managed, synchronized, or moved will enable the creation of reusable assets.
Boomi Enables Reuse
Boomi’s implementation strengths and flexibilities offer many areas where reuse and data agility can be developed and provisioned. Big Compass has years of experience helping organizations implement Boomi correctly (reducing integration bad decisions) and can assist your organization. An excellent place to start is the Boomi Value Accelerator – a concise yet valuable analysis of your existing capabilities and future Boomi demand. Let us help you determine the best Boomi future.