When talking about enterprise solutions for any function, one question asked often is, “How does this work with our company’s existing software?” For enterprise systems to be seamless company wide, they have to talk to each other.
Compliance enterprise solutions are no different.
Information sharing between cloud-based software programs is handled through an application programming interface, or API for short.
APIs structure a defined response or action for a defined request between two applications. For example, if you use LinkedIn and have a Twitter account, you can select your Twitter updates to be automatically posted to your LinkedIn account. This process is handled through two sets of APIs — one for LinkedIn and one for Twitter.
Think of APIs like an extension cord. You need a plug on one side, and a matching receiver on the other. This is the same principle that’s applied to enterprise-class software solutions.
Using APIs, cloud-based compliance software is able to “”plug in” to your existing enterprise applications and share valuable data between the two systems. As with the example of using APIs to post a Twitter update to LinkedIn, the huge benefit is automation. Sharing information efficiently means a drastic reduction in repeated labor.
By using enterprise APIs, the effort needed in the implementation stage of compliance solutions can be significantly reduced, and ongoing maintenance can be automated. This is another way technology is pushing enterprise compliance solutions into the mainstream.