Retail Customer Chooses Boomi For Their iPaaS After Data Agility Strategy Session
After completing Big Compass’s Data Agility Workshop, a well-known retail customer walked away with a strategy to connect the dots in a fragmented data ecosystem that no longer served their needs.
This isn’t an uncommon scenario. The shift towards direct-to-consumer sales has created a number of challenges for retailers who have evolved from brick-and-mortar to eCommerce. If these issues are left unsolved, companies and brands are at risk of losing market share, customer loyalty, and ultimately, revenue. The stakes are high for modern enterprises and one size doesn’t fit all, which is why the guidance of a holistic, tailor-made Data Agility solution is so critical.
Based on learnings and recommendations from their Data Agility Workshop the customer decided to deploy Salsify ProductXM and Shopify Plus to replace SFCC (Salesforce Commerce Cloud). Making the move wouldn’t be an easy task, however.
Migration from one eCommerce platform to another requires significant data integrations capabilities for core data sets such as customers, products, orders, deliveries, and more. Traditionally, these integrations are built point-to-point and reusability isn’t a major consideration. Oftentimes, a brand’s eCommerce platform is directly integrated with its legacy commerce and ERP (enterprise resource planning) platforms.
Before the customer could make the move from SFCC to Shopify they needed to address the above points and answer an important question:
“Should we migrate poorly designed point-to-point integrations and data… or should we build reusable services with an iPaaS (Integration Platform as a Service)?”
The client opted for the iPaaS (integration platform as a service) route. iPaaS is an ideal market solution for companies that rely on an ever-growing suite of cloud services to manage their Data Agility and integrations. iPaaS tools facilitate the development, execution, and governance of data integration flows between different applications. As a result, cloud services can be integrated together in an easy-to-manage way.
Once the client decided that an iPaaS was the right solution, they still needed to execute an RFP and select a platform. However, they lacked clarity on architecture designs and needed input on their governance approach.
In order to find a strategic data integration platform that would enable data agility now and into the foreseeable future, the customer continued their Data Agility journey with Big Compass. We are an experienced partner that specializes in helping enterprise clients determine exactly what data agility looks like, from ideation through implementation (and beyond).
As defined by Big Compass, Data Agility is the ability to quickly move and combine data for better insights and operations. Organizations that have data agility baked into their DNA have a unique competitive advantage, because winning is easier when your data and systems work together to create maximum value.
Leveraging our collective experience, Big Compass engaged the customer through targeted sessions that are strategically designed to help customers identify opportunities, assess roadblocks, and plan for the future. For this specific session, we focused on comparing iPaaS options with the goal of enabling seamless integrations between the customer’s systems, vendors, and customers.
The key objectives of the customer’s future integration platform included:
- Lower levels of effort when integrating systems that need highly reusable data sets.
- Reduce the burden of integration on data-producing systems by providing reusable and reliable self-service capabilities to end-users.
- Reduce the number of custom-coded interfaces via a standardized approach to integration and tooling.
- Reduce management and operations efforts to manage and maintain integrations by reducing the number of point-to-point interfaces and introducing a loosely coupled architecture.
- A simplified solution architecture that is sustainable, repeatable, and future-proofed across projects to aid in planning, scoping, and solutioning efforts.
With the above objectives in mind, we compared the customer’s iPaaS vendor options against the following criteria:
- Flexibility & portability
- Scalability & performance
Based on the customer’s needs, there was one iPaaS that clearly led the pack (but more on that in a moment).
The Data Agility Strategy Session took place over eight weeks. Once it was completed, the customer received the following deliverables:
- Maturity Assessment: An evaluation of the client’s current technology capabilities as they relate to achieving Data Agility.
- Integration Inventory: A comprehensive inventory of current and future data integrations and movements.
- Reusable Services Heat Map: A heat map that aligns value to business services opportunities to enable Data Agility.
- Capability Profile: A breakdown of Data Agility capabilities leveraged by the organization.
- Future State Architecture: Logical and reference architecture diagrams that enable immediate project needs and define long-term best practices.
- Implementation Roadmap and Timeline: A concrete roadmap to achieve Data Agility through the enablement of other business-critical projects.
After careful consideration, we were down to two top iPaaS contenders: Boomi and Informatica. Both vendors would be able to meet the customer’s current and future needs.
After strategic conversations and alignment at the various levels of the organization, we recommended Boomi. While both vendors could fulfill the customer’s functional requirements, Boomi’s pricing model (which is based on licensing instead of computing power) was a better fit due to its predictability and scalability. This means that Boomi will likely be cheaper in the long run and the customer won’t have to worry about future volume thresholds.
Once the recommendation was delivered, it was up to the customer to make a final decision. They were advised to evaluate affordability and competitive pricing, keeping two critical factors in mind:
- The initial pricing approach for installation and purchase
- The ongoing pricing approach (i.e., connectors-based versus estimated CPU consumption)
In the end, our initial recommendation was received with open arms and Boomi was selected as the company’s new iPaaS. All stakeholders are in alignment about this decision and there’s no longer a lack of clarity on architecture, design patterns, and technology.
The choice to use Boomi as their iPaaS will also have far-reaching future benefits because it will allow for the implementation of an operational data hub with reusable business services. Big Compass will custom-build this hub in Azure SQL and it will enable the customer’s data and systems to work together in harmony across multiple lines of business.
As a result, the company will be able to innovate more, adapt quicker, and move faster, all while using fewer resources.