Integration is one of the most strategic initiatives a company can invest in today. MuleSoft’s mission is to help organizations change and innovate faster by making it easy to connect the world’s applications, data, and devices. By leveraging MuleSoft, Salesforce customers can now accelerate their pace of innovation by unlocking data across legacy systems, cloud apps, and devices, connecting them all into a single application network.

During Dreamforce you’ll likely hear a lot of the world’s leading business and technology visionaries discuss how organizations can implement integration strategies to accelerate digital transformation through application networks.

To help you get the most out of these conversations, let’s take a closer look at what an application network is and why it’s important.



Adapting to a new digital era


The number of applications, data, and devices is growing exponentially every day, with different technologies converging to create entirely new customer experiences, revenue channels, and business models.

Companies can now spring up in a matter of weeks, scale globally, and turn entire industries upside down. Nearly every industry is ripe for disruption; large organizations with outdated processes and monolithic infrastructures are especially at risk. To compete with fast-moving startups, these large organizations must learn how to drive agility and speed while also being flexible enough to adapt to shifting consumer demands and market conditions.

Put simply, large businesses need a quick and efficient way to build new products and services. Organizations are already investing heavily in technologies like mobile, SaaS, cloud, big data, IoT, and social. However, the value that can be extracted from these technologies relies almost entirely on an IT team’s ability to connect them in order to build differentiated customer experiences, new revenue channels, and more efficient business models.

In a MuleSoft survey of IT decision makers, 89% indicated that integration challenges are slowing or hindering digital transformation within their organizations. On average, organizations use 1,020 individual applications across their business, but only 29%are currently integrated or connected together. This has made it difficult for IT teams to keep up with increasing business demands.


Accelerating the pace of innovation with Anypoint Platform


MuleSoft’s Anypoint Platform delivers a simple and unified solution for extracting data from internal or external sources with the use of APIs. Using MuleSoft, customers can build an application network that uses APIs to connect applications, data, and devices -- on-premises, in the cloud, or both. This makes it easier for organizations to adopt a new operating model in which IT delivers reusable technology building blocks to developers across the organization, helping them rapidly compose new applications without needing to build each project from scratch.

This helps  IT become less of a bottleneck for innovation and more of an enabler of business transformation. Rather than delivering every project from start to finish, IT’s task is to provide just enough enablement for teams across the organization to encourage the application network to grow.

By helping customers build application networks, MuleSoft has helped 1,400 enterprise customers across every major industry to fundamentally change their pace of innovation. For example, Airbus uses MuleSoft to accelerate aircraft production and increase supply chain efficiency. Airbus’s “Digital Accelerator” team built a library of reusable APIs that unlock supply chain and manufacturing data from multiple backend systems. They provisioned their shop floor workers with a mobile app that allows them to scan a barcode on the aircraft to access important data that can be used to inform their manufacturing decisions. By making this data accessible to employees across the entire organization, Airbus has increased project delivery speed by 400 percent.

An API-led approach to connectivity allows business innovation to accelerate rapidly, as new applications, data sources, and devices can simply be “plugged” into the application network. The power of integration is being able to connect any system, any device, and any user.

This morning, we announced the newest release of Anypoint Platform, which provides organizations with a new level of visibility and actionable insights into their application networks. Check out this post on the MuleSoft blog to learn more.