It’s time to get aggressive about leveraging APIs to build your business. In previous blogs, I’ve written about the power of open source for rapidly adding capabilities to your applications. APIs are like open source components on steroids. APIs allow you to take advantage of the explosion of data sources and capabilities that are being introduced every day. Do you want to process credit card transactions without worrying about PCI compliance? There’s an API for that. Do you want to sell products through the Amazon marketplace? It’s all API driven. Do you want to participate in manufacturing supply chains? EDI is rapidly being replaced by APIs. Transportation tracking? Weather information? Sales Tax information? Government Reporting? All of these can be accessed via APIs.
In every business environment, new opportunities are being created through the availability of data sharing and function sharing via APIs. In some industries, you can’t even participate if you don’t support the APIs. In Europe the PSD2 standards mandate sharing banking information via APIs. The “21st Century Cures Act: Interoperability, Information Blocking, and the ONC Health IT Certification Program Final Rule” in the US, mandates that healthcare organizations share medical records via APIs. Because of the productivity and efficiency of application to application communication, more companies are joining Amazon in requiring that you support their API structure if you want to do business with them.
Every day I speak with IBM i users who are coming up with creative ways to build their business with APIs. I worked with a food distribution company that wants to use APIs to get nutritional information about the products they sell (there are several APIs for that). Another company made their complex pricing algorithm (a set of RPG programs) available via an API so customers could easily generate their own up-to-date quotes. A major manufacturer wanted to track their expensive shipping containers as they moved from their factory, to the customers’ warehouse and back to their factory. (Lost containers cost them millions of dollars per year).
Fortunately, thanks to all of the new open source options, languages and supporting tools on the IBM i, it is easier than ever to participate in the API economy. You can now easily access public and private APIs directly from RPG and you can make RPG functions quickly and securely available via open APIs. The IBM Champions here at Eradani can help your team get started or expand on your IBM i API initiatives. To learn more, contact us at www.eradani.com or via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org.