When Gartner first wrote about the rise of Citizen Integrators, IT leaders were reluctant to embrace the burgeoning role. More than 7 years later, as leaders in asset-intensive organizations are choosing off-the-shelf, configurable solutions for data integration, Citizen Integrators are more valuable than ever before.
Read on to learn about the rise of Citizen Integrators and why organizations should leverage them for better data integration and business success.
The concept of a “Citizen Integrator” was practically impossible just a couple decades ago. With custom-coded integrations and ETL solutions containing thousands of lines of code, organizations had no choice but to assign integration projects directly to IT or development resources with programming backgrounds. With the rise of out-of-the-box, configurable data integration platforms, however, the idea and use of Citizen Integrators exploded.
Though there are many definitions of Citizen Integrators floating around, their main characteristics can be distilled in a few points.
• Citizen Integrators have no development, coding, or programming background.
• Citizen Integrators are typically business-side, tech-savvy users who want to automate manual business processes. They know what data their organization has and how they want it to connect.
• Citizen Integrators leverage out-of-the-box, configurable integration software to own their data integration.
Due to the complex nature of custom-coded integrations or ETL tools, in the past, employees might have had to wait weeks and sometimes months for IT to make even small changes within their integrations. Depending on who was requesting the maintenance or changes, this waiting period could have reduced productivity in the field, forced business users to make uninformed decisions, or created data quality havoc.
With a productized solution, like the Geonexus Integration Platform, Citizen Integrators no longer need to wait for IT to fix integration bugs, connect new systems, or perform enhancements. With a configurable tool, users of all development backgrounds can easily configure or edit their data integration on their own with simple point-and-click and drag-and-drop options.
Ultimately, productized solutions with easy-to-navigate user interfaces, like the Geonexus Integration Platform, empower Citizen Integrators to own their data integration. This ownership allows IT resources the freedom to focus on more pressing technical issues, and gives business users the freedom to make changes how and when they want to.
In the coming weeks, we will explore the future of Citizen Integrators and their increasingly important role in configurable data integration, especially in the context of GIS, Enterprise Asset Management (EAM), and Customer Information System (CIS) integration.
Learn how Geonexus’ off-the-shelf solution can simplify your organization’s GIS, EAM, and CIS integration project: www.geo-nexus.com/platform.