Data Integration and Interoperability with Salesforce

Modern business processes consistently generate vast amounts of data. To thrive in today's data-centric world, companies must collect data on everything from customer behaviour to market performance to analyze and generate insights. Logically, data quality is a major determinant of success in the manufacturing industry and beyond.  

For context, Gartner reports that financial losses incurred due to poor data quality are about $15 million per year. Data silos greatly threaten data quality, and businesses must have a solid data integration plan in place to address this persistent problem. 

In this article, we delve into the world of data integration with Salesforce, exploring the challenges of data silos and the transformative power of a unified approach. 

digital transformation

Data Silos: Reasons for their existence and consequences of locked data

Imagine data locked away in separate vaults, accessible only to a select few. That's what we call data silos. These are like mini data islands managed by different departments, keeping precious information isolated.  

Admittedly, there are some potential benefits to keeping data in silos to an organization. Data silos ensure the different departments maintain strict control over the access and use of their database. This may help maintain the quality of data and prevent loss and corruption. It also means sensitive data is secure from unauthorized access and organizations can ensure compliance with regulations.  

But, of course, they have many disadvantages, and they tend to outweigh the positive impacts of silos.   

Permitting data silos means different units within the organization are forced to work with inconsistent and incomplete data, and the consequences are often far-reaching. Siloed data negatively impacts data analysis, hampering the quality of decisions made, which inevitably hinders business operations. Also, restricted access to information within a company causes reduced productivity and poor interdepartmental collaboration. 

This disjointed data can cost you up to 30% of your revenue, as highlighted by IDC Market Research. These costly silos may occur for many reasons, most of which revolve around a decentralized organizational structure.  

When different departments or branches of a manufacturing company make decisions independently, it often leads to many different applications, databases and systems that do not seamlessly communicate with each other. For example, Statista reports that organizations worldwide used an average of 130 SaaS applications in 2022.  

Even more recent data from Salesforce reveals that organizations are using about 1,061 different applications in 2023, and only 29% are integrated.  

When these numerous systems fail to talk to each other, silos can arise.  

Therefore, it is crucial to deploy strategies that break down these data silos, connect the company data, and maximize the value generated by related data. 

Salesforce Platform: Unlocking valuable data with the world’s leading integration solution

Substandard data management practices have no place in a world where operational efficiency and positive customer experiences are critical. Although a decentralized database has advantages, the significant risk of data silos must be addressed for companies to get the best value from their different systems and applications.  

Salesforce, one of the world’s leading CRM providers, fully understands the importance of data integration and interoperability to business operations. They have helped countless organizations solve integration issues by creating a unified platform that facilitates effective data exchange between systems, applications, and databases. Depending on the individual need of a company Salesforce offers different solutions, next to standard REST and SOAP API.  

Mulesoft Anypoint  

Mulesoft is a leading integration platform-as-a-service (iPaaS) provider acquired by Salesforce in May 2018. Imagine Anypoint Platform as a bridge that connects different apps and systems, whether they're in the cloud or on-premises.  

This magic is done through APIs, making sure all your applications can talk to each other. It's like giving them a common language. And guess what? 

This leads to a seamless exchange of data and a more efficient operation. Integration requires maintenance and monitoring that comes as out-of-the-box functionality by Mulesoft.  

By providing security and short time-to-value the setup brings the right data to the right people in time.  

Salesforce Data Cloud 

The Salesforce Integration Cloud is your one-stop solution for weaving diverse data sources and systems together. It's like a grand orchestra where different instruments (data) come together to create a harmonious symphony.  

Data cloud gives you the extra level of data ETL with Mulesoft and click interface for data harmonization, duplication, and segmentation management. It comes with an integration builder and integration experiences, you can build a unified view of your customers and deliver personalized services seamlessly. 

Leveraging all the tools and services listed above, Salesforce combines disparate systems and apps to form an interconnected ecosystem where data is unified, and communication is without barriers. Consequently, businesses will enjoy stronger collaboration and smooth business operations, attaining all set goals and objectives. 

Real-life example of day integration driving progress for manufacturers 

Investing in seamless data integration is a financial decision that pays dividends early and for extended periods. There are several success stories of European manufacturing companies optimizing their operations by ensuring interoperability between different data sources. Mulesoft has been at the forefront of many successful data integration projects undertaken by companies globally in the last decade. 

The case of Siemens is a fantastic example. When the German manufacturing giant was tasked with producing 60 million smart meters in the United Kingdom, there was one major impediment to executing this contract. Their data was stuck in different silos, slowing them down. By leveraging Mulesoft’s pre-built APIs, Siemens was able to unlock the silos and feed the data into their network for general use. The result was an increase in project delivery speed by 50%. 

Guiding Your Data Integration Journey with ACTUM Digital 

Data silos threaten the smooth running of operations on the production floor and in the offices of the marketing, sales, and customer service departments. Therefore, turning to a trusted solution like Salesforce’s unified platform is important to fix such problems. By combining the immense power of Mulesoft Anypoint Platform, and Salesforce Cloud, data silos will become an occurrence of the past. 

Implementing a fully integrated Salesforce and Mulesoft project is a thorough multi-step process. From defining integration objectives to deploying the solution, much work has to be done to ensure the project's success. ACTUM Digital has an experienced and fully certified Salesforce team to help your business meet all its integration targets. Learn more about how we can amplify your operational efficiency with our CRM integration services today. 


Christoph Wiederle, Business Director Salesforce at ACTUM Digital

Christoph Wiederle

Business Director Salesforce at ACTUM Digital. You can find me on LinkedIn

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