When selecting an integration platform, it may be quite difficult to compare different vendors’ product portfolios. After all, the majority of the vendors offer rather similar set of functionalities ranging from adapters to different applications, message transformation, and process orchestration tools to monitoring and management interfaces.
For a vendor such as Youredi, this is also a communication challenge. How to distinguish your own platform from the others? Of course, you can always say that “our feature X is better than any other vendor’s similar feature”. But features are features - there’s not a single vendor who has all the best features. There’s always someone who does something a bit better. It’s the combination of different features that matters; how they work together, and how they combine into an integration solution that really can help your business.
But here’s my attempt to tell what are Youredi’s distinguishing “features”. Or rather, more generic things that we have taken into account from day one when we had started developing our integration platform. Things that make Youredi iPaaS the product it is today. Here you go:
1. It is truly multi-tenant
Years ago, when the initial design of Youredi iPaaS was drawn on a napkin, only one thing was clear in the designers’ mind: multi-tenancy. It was clear that only by running multiple tenants on the shared hardware, the integration hosting costs can be on the acceptable level. There shouldn’t be any customer-specific servers, but the overall computing capacity has to be shared between tenants so that whenever one tenant is not active, the same capacity can be used by someone else.
This caused a lot of headache in the beginning. All the security issues - how can you make sure that tenants are truly separated from each other? How do you design user interfaces? And so on.
However, we knew it can be done and in the end, the idea and the work done has paid off. We got what we knew we will get - a very cost-efficient, cloud-based integration platform that allows our customers to deploy integration solutions with a fraction of the cost compared to on-premise solutions.
But what we didn’t understand in the beginning was that by designing an integration platform as multi-tenant from the ground up made Youredi a very good tool for creating B2B integrations. When we continued the design work, we understood that by careful design, tenants can easily share data with each other - and do that securely. And that’s what we are doing today more than ever - integrating different organizations.
The first design choice we made more or less defined what we are today and the way we operate.
2. It is versatile (hybrid integration and stuff)
The second thing we had to start wondering was not that easy: who will be our customers? What industry are they serving? What applications would they integrate? Are these applications on-premise or in the cloud? What processes would be needed?
We didn’t know. It was years later when we started to find our niche in B2B integrations and our target markets. But at that point, we had to prepare for anything.
As a result, we designed a platform based on everything we knew about integration - both EAI and B2B. We implemented all the well-known integration patterns into the platform: we created adapter technologies for both cloud and on-premise integrations; we created versatile process orchestration tools; we created message transformation tools that aren’t tied to a single standard; and so on. As we didn’t know what the future will look like, we made everything extensible, so we can add new functionalities when required.
And this has also paid off. Even as we are currently focusing on B2B integrations, there are always exceptions to standard B2B integration patterns. Sometimes you need to integrate a partner that is using an on-premise application that can’t communicate via Internet - check, we can do hybrid. Quite often some company has its own interpretation of some protocol - check, we can easily modify processes. And almost always someone interprets message formats a bit differently than in standards - check, it’s easy to modify transformations per partner.
Not knowing what to expect made us tolerable to all the unexpected things that are always present in the integration world.
3. It is fast to deploy. Really.
Simultaneously with the basic product design questions, we had to deal with some business related questions as well. One of the very first questions was whether we would be providing just the product and let others do implementations, or should we provide implementation services by ourselves, too?
Those of you who have been creating a software company from scratch can guess the answer. Customers are buying a solution, and the easiest way to provide a software solution is to provide implementation projects by yourself.
At the same time, we knew that our key business model is to provide a cost-efficient, pay-as-you-go iPaaS platform. In order to achieve that target, we knew already that the projects must be done as quickly as possible. That leads us into a product development mode where we were forced to minimize the implementation time.
Even though today a variety of companies - our customers and partners in addition to our own Professional Services - are developing solutions on top of Youredi iPaaS, this principle has not changed. Creating solutions on top of Youredi iPaaS is fast.
If you don’t believe, ask our customers.
4. It is designed based on customer requirements
Another consequence of having your own implementation team is that customer requirements flow quickly to R&D. I claim that if your R&D team would gather its requirements, feature requests, bug reports etc. only from customers or implementation partners, the process would be slower than the one we have today.
Processes may be optimized, but the best way to make sure that a feature that your customer requires will be implemented is to sit near the R&D team that is responsible for those features.
And bugs as well.
5. It is made by a very special team
It’s teamwork. And a team is always made of individuals. Those working for R&D, Professional Services, Support and Operations, Marketing, Sales, and Back Office.
Working in a company focused in systems integration isn’t exactly the sexiest work you could imagine. You don’t see too many headlines about integration, you don’t get interviewed into the prime-time business news, and you know that it’s very hard to explain to your parents what you’re actually doing.
My earlier boss once said that “you don’t need to be mad to work here, but it helps”. I believe that statement fits exactly the team we have in Youredi.
Because a passion for what you are doing can sometimes be misinterpreted as madness.
To learn more about our iPaaS, download your copy of the iPaaS Product Sheet: