11 application integration tools to consider in 2024
Organizations rely on countless applications to perform their day-to-day work.
However, without an easy way to connect these applications, either with your product or your internal systems, the data they collect and store can fail to be discovered and leveraged effectively.
That’s where an application integration solution, or a 3rd-party tool that enables you to connect applications and build data flows across them, can help.
We'll break down a variety of options, both for internal and customer-facing integrations, to ensure you can find the best solution for your organization.
Internal application integration tools
Internal application integration tools focus on connecting the various applications an organization uses internally to improve efficiency, streamline processes, and enable data flows between different departments or business units.
Here are six tools for internal application integration:
Dell Boomi offers a broad suite of tools, including an integration platform as a service (iPaas), API management, and master data management.
The platform is known for having a relatively simple UI, pre-built connectors for popular applications, and helps solve many different use cases across business teams—such as lead routing or incident management.
SnapLogic, an iPaaS solution, distinguishes itself with its user-friendly, low-code interface, allowing users, from technical and non-technical backgrounds, to quickly design and manage integration workflows.
Their extensive library of pre-built connectors ("Snaps") simplifies the integration process, providing efficient connectivity to a wide array of applications and data sources.
Jitterbit facilitates the connection and automation of data between different applications, systems, and databases. It offers a user-friendly interface and a range of pre-built connectors to simplify integration tasks for businesses, making it easier to streamline their operations.
While Jitterbit offers similar features as SnapLogic and Dell Boomi, it's known for its open-source heritage and flexibility, making it a strong choice for businesses that require extensive customization and control over integration processes.
TIBCO provides a broad range of integration solutions, including the TIBCO BusinessWorks platform. TIBCO is known for its powerful and feature-rich integration tools, often favored by large enterprises and organizations with complex integration requirements. It's especially well-regarded for its ability to handle high-throughput and mission-critical integrations.
TIBCO products can be complex and the learning curve can be steep for users who are new to the platform. Along with that, the platform can require significant infrastructure to operate efficiently.
Workato is an enterprise-grade automation platform that specializes in workflow automation and integration. It enables organizations to build robust integrations between various software applications, allowing data to flow seamlessly.
Workato supports a wide range of pre-built connectors, allowing for easy integration with various tools. Not only that, their platform includes security features, such as encryption, role-based access control, and audit logs to ensure data is protected.
Smaller businesses and startups with limited budgets may not be able to afford Workato, however. Moreover, its limited offline functionality can be a challenge for users who need to work in environments that have limited internet access.
Talend offers data integration and transformation solutions that help organizations connect, access, and transform data from various sources. It simplifies data integration, making it easier for businesses to leverage their data assets.
Its open source nature makes it freely available and user are able to modify source code to meet specific needs and requirements. Talend is also known for its versatility; it supports a wide variety of integration scenarios, which make it a good choice for a variety of use cases. Things to keep in mind, though, is that Talend has low-quality documentation, limited real-time capabilities on their open source version, and, due to a lack of official support resources, users often rely heavily on the community for assistance.
Customer-facing application integration tools
Customer-facing integration (i.e. product integration), as the name suggests, is geared towards enhancing the customer experience by connecting external applications and services with a business's product.
Let's take a look at some of these tools:
Apideck offers several unified APIs; this includes unified APIs for CRM, file storage, HRIS, and accounting. It also offers numerous integrations across these categories.
However, the company is fairly small and new, which presents some risk for businesses that want to scale with their integration provider. In addition, the data you can sync via Apideck's Unified APIs can be limited, and the platform doesn't provide an easy way to access data that falls outside of its data models.
Finch offers a unified API for payroll and HRIS, allowing organizations to access roughly 200 integrations within this software category.
That said, many organizations will eventually want—and need—to integrate with categories that go beyond payroll and HRIS. Finch also doesn't allow you to sync data in real-time, which prevents their integrations from supporting time-sensitive data flows effectively.
Finally, Finch (and Apideck) fail to offer a robust set of features for monitoring and maintaining your integrations. The onus is entirely put on your engineers.
Pandium enables B2B SaaS companies to design and embed an integration marketplace through an iframe. The result is a single place within your application that allows prospects and clients to find and start building integrations with your product.
Unfortunately, Pandium often requires technical expertise to use—which can force your developers to use the platform. It also forces you to build one integration at a time, which can make it difficult when you need to scale to dozens, and eventually hundreds, of integrations.
Tray Embedded is an embedded iPaaS solution that lets companies incorporate the Tray.io iPaaS solution into their product.
The platform offers pre-built connectors to help streamline integration development, and it offers some management capabilities to help your team oversee integration health. That said, its ability to deliver on both fronts is somewhat limited. For instance, it can't automatically diagnose issues and provide remediation steps, which make it difficult and time-intensive for your team to troubleshoot and address issues. And the platform forces you to build one integration at a time, which—as mentioned earlier—can make it difficult to scale your integration builds.
Merge neatly addresses the drawbacks of the other customer-facing integration tools.
It offers 7 unified API categories (and growing) and hundreds of integrations, ensuring that you can integrate with all of the applications your clients use. It also offers comprehensive Common Models and features (like Field Mapping) to access data that lies beyond these models so that your clients can access and sync the data they care about. Finally, the platform offers Integrations Management, which includes a robust set of features that let your customer-facing employees manage clients' integrations with ease.
Learn more about Merge by scheduling a demo with one of our integration experts.