CRM middleware – what it is and how it can work for you

You want to get more out of your CRM. You dream of how much nicer it would be if you could integrate it with this or that piece of software that you use and love. Well, you might not know it, but you are dreaming of CRM middleware!

Middleware definition - what is middleware after all?

It is not so easy to define middleware as you might think. In general, middleware is software that can link two separate applications together. It is in the middle of those applications, thus the term "middleware".

The term has evolved and, currently, middleware is usually seen as the glue that allows several components to interact with one another. When we use the term CRM middleware, it means one of these components is the CRM system, something like Microsoft Dynamics, Salesforce, or SAP.

Middleware products

Middleware products and tools' primary role is to enable and simplify the integration of components developed by multiple technology suppliers.

When appropriately implemented, middleware tools can help to:

  • Shield software developers from tedious and error-prone platform details.
  • Amortize software lifecycle costs by leveraging previous investments and developments.
  • Provide a consistent set of higher-level abstractions that are much closer to application requirements and therefore simplify development.
  • Provide a broad array of developer-oriented services, such as security that are necessary but take up a lot of development effort.

But while the advantages of middleware products are clear, there are also some concerns.

The most frequent concern is performance. Yes, it is nice to have this ability to connect applications seamlessly, but how much will it "cost" us in terms of performance?

Connect Bridge - a middleware tool to build middleware

Connecting Software developed Connect Bridge a middleware tool that allows you to create your custom middleware in any language with much fewer lines of code.

Connect Bridge makes the task simple enough for a junior developer to tackle it, using any programming language.

Let's see how it works. Typically, when building a middleware, the developer needs to use the API of the software he is connecting to. The idea behind Connect Bridge is that the developer stops writing code for the API and starts writing standard SQL statements instead. Connect Bridge translates the ANSI standard SQL syntax into the appropriate API calls.

OK, this is a more convenient way to build the middleware, but does it come at a performance cost? Thomas Berndorfer, CEO of Connecting Software, explains: "The idea of Connect Bridge is to make it very simple and fast. It is fast for the developer because they can become integration heroes in 3 hours. After all, they remain in their language and have to learn nothing new. We also wanted to make the resulting software fast. Performance and security were major concerns from the beginning.".

Another advantage of using this kind of middleware tool is compatibility. A classical problem of middleware was the changes to the API, usually caused by upgrades to the underlying software. For example, if you built an integration with Dynamics 365 and then Microsoft upgraded Dynamics, it would be no surprise if your integration stopped working.

Having Connect Bridge shields the developers from these changes, as it is Connect Bridge that handles them. This is one of the main reasons why the tool is cost-effective. If you want to know more about pricing, fill the short form here.

Takeaway

Using a CRM middleware is a more modern way of tackling integration projects that involve your CRM. It allows for faster development of the final integration solution, and it ensures that the solution has fewer errors and is easier to maintain. In summary, using a CRM middleware means better ROI for your integration project. It can be the little thing that makes it possible for your integration dream to become a reality.

Connect Bridge is our primary solution, on which we have built our successful market-leader products. We have 1000+ installations, and 250 000+ active users on all six continents. If you're eager to see how Connect Bridge works for yourself, the logical first step is to get in touch with our integration experts and ask for a free demo.

By Ana Neto, Connecting Software, a 15-year-old producer of integration and synchronization solutions.

The post CRM middleware – what it is and how it can work for you appeared first on CRM Software Blog | Dynamics 365.

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