Workday doesn’t just deliver SaaS you know
Famed for their evangelical implementation of the SaaS delivery model, Workday is the manifestation of ‘true cloud’ software; however it is their lesser-publicised delivery model I want to discuss– embedded iPaaS.
PaaS provides infrastructure software, such as integration mechanisms, storage areas and runtime environments, upon which applications are built and deployed, examples include Heroku and Gigaspaces. iPaaS is a specialised form of infrastructure software which makes no provision for building applications, being solely designed to service the development, execution and governance of integration flows between any combination of cloud service and system. Gartner recognise four categories of iPaaS:
Workday’s integration platform falls into both the embedded iPaaS and cloudstream-enabler iPaaS categories above. The embedded iPaaS is used to develop and execute custom integration components in order to perform specific integration functions, such as exchanging worker compensation information with global payroll providers. These integration components can be designed, implemented and deployed both by Workday end-users and specialist Workday Integration Consultants, for low and high complexity integrations respectively.
The key benefit of these offerings is that onsite infrastructure or software for integrations is no longer necessary. The maintenance and management responsibilities for everything except the application-specific integration component are pushed out of customer organisations, with Workday assuming the operational risk of providing this service. And as this service is provided for all Workday customers, it provides military-grade security, resiliency and scalability in the precisely the same way as the SaaS-delivered Workday application. The Workday integration platform will evolve as technology evolves, will extend as your integration demands increase and will seamlessly failover if or when such scenarios occur. The best part is that as an embedded iPaaS, this is all included in your Workday subscription.
I was lucky enough to represent Kainos at the Cloud Computing Expo New York in June last year where I was party to a number of discussions on ‘middleware of the future’ where vendors were anticipating cool things like ‘Integration-on-demand’ and ‘Cloud-delivered for C2C touch points’. I took stock for a moment and chuckled to myself, realising that the ‘future’ as these guys were discussing was in fact the present and yet again Workday were among the leaders that had brought us here.
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