gold blocks stacked onto each other

Integration Infographics – Integrate and Don’t Build it Yourself



They say every picture tells a story. At VL we believe that infographics are a great way of telling a story. A story that business owners need to know and understand.

The first story is that integrated EDI is the only way to go. If you are using a web portal or your EDI is not integrated or not properly integrated its costing you $56 dollars per PO cycle. Those are 2009 numbers from the UK grocery industry but the numbers don’t lie. The dollars add up! Our first infographic tells the story of the costs associated with the life cycle of a purchase order that is not integrated. In this day of race to the bottom in EDI costs and everybody pushing web portals at crazy stupid rates, the real costs are not in signing up to a cheap web portal, the true costs are all in the inefficiencies. I would bet that most business owners who look at EDI and sign up for a cheap portal have never even considered the costs of not integrating their EDI or not looking for efficiencies.

The second infographic tells the story of middleware; build vs buy. I am still amazed by the number of people who believe its cost effective to build a middleware integration stack as opposed to buying commercial software. I am actually equally amazed by the people who push pure cloud-based integration as a more cost-effective approach, the panacea to all those integration woes. I have heard numbers as high as seven times cheaper in the cloud. That’s hogwash. I don’t care how you slice and dice it. A properly integrated in-house system with cloud connections, over the long term is cheaper than a hosted solution. So lets start with the integration stack.

Our build vs buy infographic asks a series of questions that anyone pondering building their own integration stack should consider. We leave the reader with the two Integration TV episodes to watch. Its simple economics, if it is not adding value to your company then don’t think its cheaper to build it in house. Just because your IT guy is or was a programmer at some point doesn’t mean he or she can build an integration solution. Integration is complex, it requires experience and to do it properly takes time. All things that are expensive. So we conclude its far cheaper to buy than it is to try and build.

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