What is API Management?

API management is the process of developing, publishing, managing, monitoring, deprecating, and consuming APIs, to ensure the seamless flow of data and control between both internal and external sources (such as partners and clients). Application programming interfaces (APIs) enable data, applications, and services to talk to each other. A robust API management solution helps ensure APIs are accessible and secure.

A successful API management strategy takes an “API-first approach,” which defines what the service must provide before considering how it will be implemented. APIs use HTTP/S REST/SOAP or other protocols to integrate data, applications, and services. .

As your business uses more APIs, you need two key API management elements:

  • An API hub to serve as a central repository where you can publish, search for, and consume APIs
  • An API manager, an API management tool that allows you to manage the entire API lifecycle. When offered as part of an intelligent, integrated platform as a service (iPaaS), the API manager enables you to develop, publish, manage, monitor, deprecate, and consume APIs to orchestrate business processes and provide access to data that spans multi-cloud and on-premises systems.

How API Management Impacts Business Value

To stay competitive, companies have had to undergo a major transformation to handle the growing amount of data, data types, and data sources. Data integration is essential for this transformation, even more so with cloud coming into the picture, and APIs have become foundational for creating connections.

Data APIs are business-critical for organizations because they usually trigger business processes and back-end transactions. As such, API management solutions need to focus on security and protection, while introducing a rich and robust policy set that includes access, authentication, quality-of-service, privacy, and threat-protection. And, of course—better monitoring and auditing.

API management consequently affects business value by:

  • Improving the distribution of information across and between departments. API management facilitates the orchestrating of business processes that span multiple clouds and on-premises systems
  • Increasing security. An API gateway, as part of an API management solution, enables you to secure and control access to APIs by applying policies such as rate limiting and IP filtering.
  • Fostering innovation and generating new revenue streams. API management streamlines the process for sharing the building blocks of new potential enterprise applications.

Check Your API Management Performance: Four Questions to Ask

Modern API management requires the flexibility and agility to integrate multiple applications and data repositories across multi-cloud and on-premises environments—all in real time. An integrated cloud API management solution, based on an enterprise iPaaS such as Informatica Intelligent Cloud Services (IICS), delivers the performance and efficiency you need to meet these demands.

Is your API management solution performing up to today’s standards? Here are four questions you can ask to find out:

  • Does it offer complete, end-to-end API lifecycle management, including data protection to keep sensitive data safe?
  • Does it save valuable development time by offering a zero-code environment, automated API discovery, and auto-generated interface definitions so your team can accomplish these tasks with minimal effort?
  • Can it support democratized API development to enable people other than elite developers to create APIs and thereby improve business agility and responsiveness?
  • Does it provide complete visibility into your API usage and associated analytics, from an easy-to-understand visual interface?

How IICS Delivers API Management Value

An iPaaS ensures that the data shared between API-connected applications is of high quality, trustworthy, and secure. IICS is an industry-leading, comprehensive iPaaS designed for data integration, API and application integration, and data management initiatives across a multi-cloud landscape. It can turn an ordinary API into an intelligent API. This intelligent API uses metadata to understand the origin of data, the purposes for which it may be used, and rules around who may access it and for what purpose. Here are three ways that IICS delivers API management value:

1. The Democratization of APIs

Informatica Cloud Application Integration and API Management solutions include simplicity, accessibility, and productivity capabilities that ensure intelligent APIs can be developed not only by Java-class developers, but also by members of your data and application teams. A simple point-and-click is all it takes to enable your data, application, and orchestration APIs. This is game-changing for organizations that can no longer depend on the availability of consultants and overloaded IT teams.

2. Advanced Data Access to Any Data, Any Pattern, Any Latency

Through the power of APIs, Informatica provides customers with broad data access and manipulation. Orchestrate, ingest, synchronize, replicate, transform, and lift and shift any data, residing anywhere (be it in the cloud or on-premises, inside or outside your firewall), at any speed, with any specified latency, in real-time—all with an API call. Access to your APIs is controlled, throttled, and monitored. Simply put, you can create your data as an API in a secure, well-managed manner.

3. AI-Enabled Metadata Discovery

Data comes from anywhere and too often without description. Powered by Informatica’s machine learning-powered CLAIRE® engine, Informatica API Management allows you to automatically discover and describe your data for usage in various integration scenarios. Whether you’re processing large bulk datasets, exposing or making API calls, or initiating mass ingestion of data, your API management tools cannot work effectively if you can’t describe the data. CLAIRE-based metadata discovery embedded in Informatica API Management solutions give your teams the intelligence they need to understand and capture the value of your data, providing capabilities unsurpassed by any other vendor.

Customer Success Stories

Organizations are achieving real-world success with Informatica API Management and Cloud Application Integration. Ergotron, which delivers adjustable technology furniture and mounts, needed a single-vendor solution to integrate its existing Oracle and Salesforce solutions and reduce cycle times to get ergonomic products to customers. According to Damon Metts, Director of IT Program Management, “Using Informatica to synchronize customer inquiry data helps us improve response times, minimize chances of lost requests, and scale support. Our customers feel the benefits.”

A leading provider of cloud and hybrid data-protection solutions, Carbonite, was struggling to manage a three-fold growth in Salesforce data, and manual data-entry was slowing client interactions and impacting Salesforce adoption. With Informatica, the company was able to accelerate its sales, marketing, and services decision-making and support rapid business growth. “Informatica Cloud Application Integration shaves at least 20 seconds off the time needed to create each case. Our 220 agents are creating hundreds of cases every day, so the savings in time, money, and headcount is dramatic,” says Robert Frost, Vice President of Customer Support.

API Management Resources

Want to learn more about gaining competitive advantage through API management and API and application integration? Here are resources to get you started: