Software integrations, what are they and how do they work?

June 08, 2018

Software integrations, what are they and how do they work?

 In the age of IOT, SaaS and Cloud Computing, key business processes have taken a huge leap forward.  And with such huge advances being made in computing, a business must jump onboard, or be left behind.  Left behind?  Without key business integrations, a business will be bleeding data-entry labour, increased potential for data-entry errors, delayed access to key business data and paying for increased staffing costs...with this dead weight, a business can't progress as quickly as they should.

  How do business systems integrate?  During this blog series, we'll be considering some key business systems, what type of integrations should we expect, how do they work, and what's the potential benefit to your business.  Systems can integrate on an export-import level, on a database level, direct API integration, or leverage off a cloud-connector tool that uses an API.

  We will look at these systems and how they can integrate with each other:

  • eCommerce
  • Accounting
  • Payroll
  • Company data storage
  • Marketing
  • Direct database to database integration
  • Customer Service
  • ..and more

  The benefits for a business that can automate their processes by integrating their key business systems can be:

  • Reduced staff, labour costs
  • Reduced data-entry errors
  • No delay in accessing key business data
  • Faster business processes
  • Increased customer satisfaction
  • Reducing the businesses impact on our environment

  Can integration really provide these benefits?  Let's consider just one of those listed, reduced staff/labour costs, in just one sector of your business, your payroll processes.  Many businesses still pay an admin person, payroll officer or worst case site Supervisors, to manually calculate staff work hours that have been hand-written on paper timesheets.  This one business process, still being in the dark ages, could be costing these business thousands of dollars every year.  How? 

  According to one APA* study, it takes approximately 5 to 6 minutes per employee for someone to manually calculate and audit an employees paper timesheet.  As employees fill in their own timesheet and perform their own 'rounding' on when they actually started and finished, it's also estimated that approximately 10 mins per day per employee could be 'rounded' on a paper timesheet.  Also, there is a 1-8% clerical error rate when calculating employee work hours and then manually entering that data into payroll software.

  Does that study show that a business could be saving much by implementing an automated and integrated key business system to manage employee timesheets and payroll?  Let's look at it this way.  Let's halve those estimates, just to be safe.  And let's look at a typical business of 20 employees who are on an average wage of $50k per year.  An automated system could save this business approximately $16,833.25 per year, and that's a conservative estimate! (*See ROI Calculator:

  Yes, automated and integrated business systems are critical for any sized business to stay relevant and ahead of the competition.

In our next article, we'll consider why eCommerce businesses must have direct integration from their online shops to their accounting systems.  Stay tuned!

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