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Integrating With SaaS Applications - Example 3rd-Party Platform Integration

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Integrating With SaaS Applications - Example 3rd-Party Platform Integration

In this article, we take a look at how customers are integrating with third-party platforms in their architectures as SaaS platforms.

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Integrating SAAS application workflow

Integrating SAAS application workflow
The previous article in this series looked at a SaaS CRM connector integration example. The foundation for this logical diagram was researching a use case where customers were successful with a portfolio solution.

It's a starting point for the generic architectural blueprint that rises from several customer solutions that were researched. Having completed the outline of the blueprint details and the resulting logical diagram elements, it's now time to take a look as specific examples.

In this article, we'll continue building the previous examples by sharing how customers are integrating with third-party platforms in their architectures as SaaS platforms.

  You may also enjoy: Integrating With SaaS Applications — An Introduction.

Blueprint Scenarios

As a reminder, the architectural details covered here are based on real customer integration solutions using open source technologies.

The example scenario presented here is a generic common blueprint that was uncovered researching customer solutions. It's my intent to provide a blueprint that provides guidance and not deep technical details.

This section covers the visual representations as presented. There are many ways to represent each element in this architectural blueprint, but I've chosen icons, text, and colors that I hope are going to make it all easy to absorb. Feel free to post comments at the bottom of this post or contact me directly with your feedback.

Now, let's take a look at the details in this blueprint and outline the solution.

Integrating With SaaS Platforms

The example blueprint shown in the figure, titled Example: Third-Party Platform Integration, outlines how to integrate an existing 3rd-party platform as if it's a SaaS platform.

As is often the case, organizational choices in our past have left us with legacy components in our architectures. While sometimes these are simple components to integrate with, we live and learn by applying the same abstractions to our larger platforms that might be hosting a collection of functionality in our organization.

Third-party platform integration

Third-party platform integration

For example, let's assume this image above is making use of a legacy platform hosting a myriad of specialized services that have become impossible to maintain. The amount of interfaces and maintenance has become such a burden that the organization desires to migrate away from the legacy platform, yet they cannot at this time, due to their dependency on those hosted services.

A logical approach is to segregate the platform as if it's a cloud or SaaS service. This allows for gradual migration of the existing services from the 3rd-party platform at your convenience, including the eventual move to offsite or cloud-based service hosting. SaaS integration with these services or applications provides many options going forward in managing the architecture.

The blueprint here shows a specific part of the integration, where a frontend web connection uses frontend microservices to access integration microservices that manage that generic access to the third-party platform. Note, the security aspects are left in this example to ensure that you remember to include authentication and authorization across your integration landscape.

Implementation details are left up to the reader to quantify, as each organization's needs and usage of specific SaaS integration with all possible third-party platforms can not be captured in a generic architectural blueprint beyond the above.

What's Next

An overview of the series on integrating SaaS applications portfolio architecture blueprint can be found here:

  1. An introduction
  2. Common architectural elements
  3. Example CRM integration
  4. Example CRM connector integration
  5. Example 3rd-party platform integration
  6. Example processes with 3rd-party platform integration.

Catch up on any articles you missed by following one of the links above. Next in this series, I'll be taking a look at integration with processes and third-party SaaS or SaaS-like platforms.

Topics:
architecture ,container platform ,containers ,integration ,microservices ,saas applications ,saas integration

Published at DZone with permission of Eric D. Schabell , DZone MVB. See the original article here.

Opinions expressed by DZone contributors are their own.

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