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September 21, 2018

Impacts on the IT organizational structure with API Management

Alexandre Gomes
Director Business Sales, LatAm

Transforming traditional organizations into digital ones requires much more than technological investment and a strong marketing sponsor: It is essential to lead the organization to make a movement starting from the traditional procedural model – slow and dependent on human validations – to the transactional model – more agile and automated, renouncing human validations. These changes, however, are not simple paths, since IT itself experiences the bitter taste of working with structural changes.

This transformation has more to do with cultural than technological impact. It is so intrinsic that it demands that the teams, at all levels, modify the mental model of the business. As an example, we can cite some impacts on the IT structure with API Management provided by transactional models:

  • Time-to-Market reduction.
  • Increased agility in the development of systems.
  • Ability to manage a larger transaction volume.
  • Increased ability to manage and protect the backend in a new scenario of elastic demand.
  • Increased integration capacity of the legacy.
  • Increased number of interfaces with suppliers.
  • Greater attention for security and Corporate Governance.

These requirements need to address capabilities to ensure their alignment with the Transactional Business Model, as we will see below:

Conversely, the impacts on the organizational structure of IT are usually not prioritized when a cultural change of this magnitude crosses the entire organization. It is very common to maintain the same organizational approach to deal with a topic that has caused a rupture in the way of working.It is common for IT itself to treat digital transformation merely as a technological objective (specifically in architecture), but in practice, this rupture reaches cultural levels in the organizational structure of the company. In this context, IT has new roles and responsibilities, which are reinserted into a new operational and organizational model.

A new element, such as the billing of transactions, places IT next to the business, as well as the commercial areas, encompassing services that directly reach the end customer, in the form of a transactional self-service. Consequently, there is an increase in the perception of customer value as a service, especially regarding IT in this context.

In a certain way, the sector already operated in such a way, but now sensitivity has increased.

Increasingly, IT operation is ceasing to be a means to an end. Businesses are entering the IT routines, migrating from support-only scenarios to joint-leadership scenarios.

From the technological standpoint, companies have invested more and more in their architectures so that they can support the management of the high demand for transactions with security, monitoring, and protection of the legacy. The API Management platform has been one of the alternatives for this context – but what are the consequences for the organizational structure of IT?

In fact, organizations are experimenting with some organizational models that seek to cover the demands of this new context. Meanwhile, some important observations should be highlighted in the change of the IT work when its architecture begins to work with transactions and exhibition of services:

Development area:

As IT seeks to meet the requirements for processing a transaction, the definition of the end user is of limited importance, since at the end of the day, a transaction can be triggered by a client, ally or the internal area, as well as by several different channels. In fact, the visibility is related to the journey with different people.

The area of ​​internal development now focuses on the creation of APIs that can meet the transactional demands that the business area demands as a priority to address the journeys. This approach requires that the development team execute the best design of the APIs, abstracting the technology behind the legacy and focusing on service exposure in a clear and easily understandable model. At this stage, there is a need to understand the processing flow to address a business flow without the concern regarding the device that will trigger the transaction. The channels used to trigger the transactions become the responsibility of those who will develop the solutions in the available devices, which, therefore, do not require knowledge of the business flow, but rather the services that should be used in a certain transaction.

This is a coherent division of work, because those who understand the legacy develops the best way to expose access to the legacy and those responsible for the user experience will maintain the focus on the interaction with the device/channel.

Integration Projects:

IT does not need to accompany the integrations of each supplier. The Developer Portal performs a large part of the work, protecting the IT team and allowing several suppliers to work in parallel. This is possible thanks to standardized documentation, control of development environments, and exposure of services via API. There is a strong reduction in the dependence of IT equipment for the development of integrations, resulting in an accelerator in the delivery of functions.

Assistance and operation:

Currently, digital conferences require a greater number of integrations both at the internal (legacy) and external level (third parties). Managing the quality of the services involved in a transaction requires a robust tool for real-time transactional analysis.

This activity undergoes a great transformation in IT, as monitoring occurs at the level of the transaction, as opposed to the technological components. Assistance then analyzes the response time of the transactions, thereby anticipating degradations and quickly perceiving if there are users impacted by unanswered services. It is also possible to detect voluntary or involuntary attacks on the channels.

Troubleshooting is also facilitated, as it is possible to trace of the transaction and identify where the degradation occurred in the response time or at the interruption of the transaction. Conversely, it is possible to view error messages in a single console and quickly activate the corresponding equipment (networks, servers, applications, or database).

In conclusion

These new equipment models assisted by a platform offer competitive advantages to IT equipment.

There is no reduction in the team, but rather a redesign that makes it possible to explore the individual skills of its developers in a much richer manner, exempting process functions and redirecting activities directly linked to the company’s final business actions. On the other hand, the implementation of agile development methodologies is much easier, with notable gains in time to market and IT agility.

Sensedia specializes in Digital Strategies and APIs. We can lead your company in the digital transformation journey and deliver more insights on IT restructuring. Send us a message, and our experts will get in touch with you.

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