The Role of Integration in Innovation

8 minute read | 26 Feb 2020

By Danalynne Menegus

In today’s cloud-driven world, no technology can deliver to its full potential without connectivity. Data, applications, devices, and people all need to work together to automate tasks and streamline workflows. Integration is the most effective way to achieve this goal. But without the right tools and the right implementation partners, it can be a challenge.

Accenture is one of Boomi’s most strategic, experienced, and successful implementation partners. Together, Accenture and Boomi help organizations scale and move to the cloud while supporting the legacy realities of the enterprise.

We recently sat down with Accenture’s senior managers David Clayton and Sachin Grewal to discuss the partnership, industry trends, and role of integration for harnessing emerging technologies and driving digital transformation.

How has partnering with Boomi helped Accenture’s business?

David Clayton: We’re excited about the value we bring to our customers together with Boomi as a strategic partner. These days almost all our clients are operating in a hybrid cloud environment, which is a sweet spot for Boomi. Boomi’s breadth of capability allows us to have broad and comprehensive conversations with our clients about the solutions they need, and Boomi’s low-code approach helps us deliver efficiently and quickly.

Sachin Grewal: Everybody wants to innovate and they want to innovate yesterday. Using the Boomi Platform provides the advantages of speed and agility, which are key requirements for our clients. At Accenture, we are always looking for new ways to help our clients achieve digital transformation. This means identifying the best technologies for the job, and making sure our subject matter experts are trained and upskilled effectively and quickly. And our partnership with Boomi helps us do just that.

There is an increasing focus on emerging technologies across all industries. What trends are you seeing, and what role does integration play?

David Clayton: Nearly all of the emerging technologies today — the Internet of Things (IoT), blockchain, artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML), and robotic process engineering (RPE) — are either based on or reliant on strong interconnectivity between systems and efficient reuse of data across systems. And that means they are reliant on strong integration solutions.

Take hyper-personalization: There are organizations looking to produce a common, everyday product that’s specific to a user — for example, a piece of clothing that is tailored exactly to your measurements and delivered to you quickly. You walk into a shop and have a pre-populated shopping list that is based on a machine learning algorithm, that is based on your history of shopping. This type of service is based on having the ability to make key customer data available immediately and pervasively across the system.

Boomi provides a strong integration platform as a service (iPaaS) but also expands into workflow management and master data management. This allows us to assemble broader solutions for our clients. We’re currently working jointly with Boomi on a distributed ledger solution that allows customers to integrate seamlessly and quickly with blockchain as an example, and that’s allowing us to accelerate solution delivery for our clients.

Sachin Grewal: All these technologies are really packaged together — blockchain, IoT, AI, and ML are all working in conjunction with each other. Boomi has the potential to be used across all of these emerging technologies. We’ve already done some implementations with blockchain and IoT, where you have IoT sensors which are used on top of devices and those IoT sensors are pushing data to the back-end systems. From there, Boomi is able to take care of it. The blockchain solution makes sure that the data is recorded and everybody has a transparent view.

What are the most pressing business challenges facing your clients? How are you working with Boomi to address them?

David Clayton: Accelerating innovation is a key challenge. The IT world our customers are operating in is changing faster than ever, so an IT house now is designing not just a solution that meets the requirements of today, but a solution that will allow them to be agile and flexible in the future.

Our clients are operating in a hybrid cloud environment, so they need a solution that will seamlessly integrate independently of the container that is hosting a piece of service. Boomi allows them to seamlessly integrate irrespective of the container that is hosting the capability and where it’s located, on-premises or in the cloud.

Sachin Grewal: Digital transformation is always top of mind. We’ve implemented Boomi for a lot of clients to help in this area. For one large global beverages organization, we partnered with Boomi to offer a global human capital management (HCM) rollout across fifteen or sixteen countries. They had multiple versions of existing legacy systems, and now are all onboarded onto the same platform.

We did something similar for a large pharmaceutical industry client as well, escalating a global patient onboarding system which could be used globally. With Boomi, we were able to rapidly deliver at scale, which is something we would not have been able to do using a traditional integration platform.

Are there any particular industries or vertical markets where you’re seeing accelerated innovation?

David Clayton: Many companies are looking at how they can expand their scope of business outside of their current industry boundary. Retail organizations are looking at how they can leverage their current presence to provide retail as a service to other vendors. Utilities providers are looking at how they can expand their business into providing additional services to the customer at home. There’s now a breadth of movement in the industry that wasn’t there the past few years.

Sachin Grewal: Every industry is being impacted now. Everybody is innovating at a speed that nobody could have envisioned before. Fintechs, the banking sector, telcos, retail, travel, hospitality … resources and utilities are still a little farther behind, but they’re quickly catching up. To stay ahead of the curve, they need the right platforms and tools — and that is where a platform like Boomi’s is the biggest advantage for us, and for our clients as well. It helps us do the transformation at a very fast pace and takes away most of the pain that we experienced in the more traditional integration space.

What advice would you give to companies looking to embark on a digital transformation journey?

Sachin Grewal: The key thing is to understand what your business needs to do and how it needs to do it. Be vigilant about the organization’s data needs. What type of data classification will you need to do? What are your data storage needs? What are the products that will be the best fit to help you on that journey?

Look for the right architectures and engage with a partner who can actually give you the right set of architectures, with the right set of tools and products. And of course, the right implementation is key. If you have the right fit with all of these different factors, the transformation journey is not difficult to take.

Boomi + Accenture

Accenture’s end-to-end capabilities and industry expertise combined with Boomi’s low-code, cloud-native integration platform helps businesses connect everything, so employees, partners, and customers can engage everywhere, across any channel, device, or platform.

Today, more than 40 Accenture projects across a wide variety of industries use Boomi as their integration solution.

Boomi also powers Accenture’s Intelligent Patient Service Exchange (IPSE), part of its Intelligent Patient Platform. And in a keynote at Boomi World 2019, Accenture’s global managing director of conversational AI, Laetitia Cailleteau, demonstrated how the two companies are partnering to make AI-powered, multilingual voice interfaces available to Boomi customers.

Please contact our integration experts today to find out how Boomi and Accenture can help your company modernize its technology infrastructure.