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DENVER, May 16, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Cloud Elements, a pioneer in API integration, today announced the latest version of its platform with powerful new features that “virtualize” API integration, making it easier for software and service teams to proactively build, manage and scale digital ecosystems that accelerate product adoption and improve customer experience.
The new platform addresses two big challenges for today’s development teams: 1) Reducing the pain, cost, and complexity of integration, which sucks up developer time and distracts from product innovation; and 2) Increasing market opportunity by enabling customers to quickly adopt new software that works with their existing applications, while enabling collaboration across their extended ecosystem of customers, prospects, partners and supply chains.
“Our new platform is a true innovation accelerator for software businesses,” said Mark Geene, CEO and co-founder, Cloud Elements. “By unifying APIs and virtualizing data models, we eliminate the drudgery of point-to-point integration, so software teams are ready to capitalize on whatever comes next. We give them the power to create a digital ecosystem – so they can sell more software faster and enable customer success with plug-and-play applications.”
Changing the Economics of Integration
Cloud Elements 3.0 changes the economics of integration, allowing APIs to work in uniform ways across hundreds of applications while sharing common data models. Instead of requiring developers to build point-to-point connections using inconsistent APIs, Cloud Elements starts by unifying APIs with enhanced capabilities for authentication, discovery, search, error handling and API maintenance. These “Elements” can then be combined into workflows (aka Formulas) that automate business processes across applications. Elements and Formulas can be easily modified, shared and re-used, significantly improving developer productivity. Elements also shield developers from underlying API changes, significantly reducing maintenance costs.
Cloud Elements 3.0 adds a powerful new capability called Virtual Data Hubs, which puts a company’s data model at the center of their ecosystem. Virtual Data Hubs provide a normalized view of data objects, like “accounts” or “orders” or “payments,” allowing companies to manage data they care about in the structure that is optimized for their application or business. This provides software teams with more control over user experience, eliminating the need for point-to-point mapping of data to each and every new application. For example, developers can use or modify templates for “leads” that work seamlessly across multiple CRM systems, rather than having to create a new connection for each individual platform.
Cloud Elements 3.0 also includes a new visual integration feature, called Conductor, that allows customer success and professional services teams to build and manage workflow without code. These “ad hoc integrators” can now easily customize integrations and build workflows that meet specific customer needs. Conductor features an intuitive visual interface for all skill levels, without sacrificing on power and capability.
“API integration is becoming increasingly critical to business strategy, as evidenced by our latest survey of API enthusiasts,” said Ross Garrett, vice president of product at Cloud Elements. “With Cloud Elements 3.0, we’re providing more tools to more people, so they can get the job done faster. We’re doing the heavy lifting of API integration, so development teams can focus on innovating and creating great experiences for their customers.”
Build, Manage and Scale Digital Ecosystems
Enterprise IT leaders have identified integration as a critical barrier to digital transformation – stalling progress for 84 percent of organizations, according to MuleSoft’s latest survey. Other reports show the average enterprise uses more than 1,500 cloud applications and services, many of which are operating in silos. Meanwhile, software vendors increasingly realize the importance of building integrations with partner companies, and venture capitalists advocate that software companies should shift their thinking from “products” to “platforms.”
To address these needs, Cloud Elements believes enterprises and software providers need to move beyond point-to-point application integration, which can’t effectively scale to address the challenge. Instead, they should build dynamic digital ecosystems where data and processes flow seamlessly across dozens to hundreds of applications. This requires unified APIs and data models, a one-to-many technology architecture, and shared focus on integration by software providers and enterprise IT departments. Cloud Elements 3.0 delivers the technology to realize this vision.
London-based Akkroo is one provider that has used Cloud Elements to proactively build its digital ecosystem. Akkroo’s event lead capture tool allows B2B sales and marketing teams to turn conversations into qualified leads. “We knew that our ideal customer is already investing in marketing automation and CRM systems,” said Andy Higgs, co-founder and chief product officer. “By using Cloud Elements, we have been able to spin up integrations within very short periods, which has been huge for us. … Because we were able to implement five integrations quickly, we now cover 90 percent of the market of systems that our customers use.”
Colorado-based TwentyEighty likewise uses Cloud Elements to integrate applications across its portfolio of learning, development and performance businesses, which generate hundreds of millions in revenue. “The Cloud Elements platform allows us to focus on our custom business logic while not worrying about third-party vendors,” says Michael Casullo, chief information officer at TwentyEighty. “With Cloud Elements integration between our CRM and ERP applications, we’ve seen nearly a 60 percent cost reduction when compared to previous manual business processes spend. Because we’ve integrated from lead to opportunity to invoice, we’re able to recognize revenue much sooner in the cycle.”
Western Union uses Cloud Elements to deliver more seamless experiences across its fintech ecosystem. “What was exciting was the one-to-many experience, being able to integrate into the Cloud Elements platform and that gave us connectivity to a number of accounting systems. We didn't want to have to go and build those systems point by point,” said Scott Johnson, head of product at Western Union Business Solutions.
Cloud Elements’ customer base includes large software platform companies like SAP, IBM and Axway; independent software vendors like DoubleDutch, FinancialForce, Microstrategy and Sage; financial technology providers such as Danske Bank, FIS, PaySimple and Western Union; and digital business units of large enterprises like Dun & Bradstreet and Xerox.
Pre-Built Integrations for 200+ Applications
Cloud Elements 3.0 includes more than 200 pre-built integrations for a broad array of cloud applications and services, including ERP, CRM, human capital, finance, e-commerce, field service, payments, marketing, messaging, database, storage, and social applications. The latest platform includes new Elements for popular cloud-based ERP (Workday, Oracle, Microsoft Dynamics) and HCM applications (Workday, Oracle, Ultimate Software, Kronos, ADP Payroll).
Cloud Elements Developer Community
Cloud Elements also launched a developer community that allows developers to share Elements and Formulas via a public GitHub repository. Elements are pre-built integrations with normalized capabilities for authentication, discovery, search, workflows, error handling and API maintenance. Formulas are workflow templates that automate processes across multiple applications, e.g. “hire to retire,” “order to cash” and specialized workflows in fintech, healthcare, martech, and other ecosystems.
About Cloud Elements
Cloud Elements brings harmony to the world of APIs, allowing software providers to innovate faster and plug into digital ecosystems. The company’s one-to-many virtualized API integration platform enables developers to unify thousands of APIs, build common data models for core business functions, and reduce the pain, cost, and complexity of integration. Founded in 2012, Cloud Elements is headquartered in Denver, Colorado, and serves customers worldwide. More information can be found at www.cloud-elements.com.
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