Roberto Medrano

The need to effectively utilize APIs is increasingly becoming a critical need for organizations that rely on software to run their business. New revenue channels can easily be created, and integration with partner and customer services is much easier with enterprise APIs, and forward-thinking organizations understand that it’s crucial for them to become smart about API development, publishing and management. The scope of uses for APIs is vast and getting larger, and we repeatedly hear from customers and partners how they’re using APIs to manage more parts of their operations.

What we’re seeing is one of the fastest-paced transformations in the enterprise technology history. Typically, new development tools and methodologies take time to be absorped into the technology adoption lifecycle. There’s a learning curve and some time needed to get accustomed to a new way of doing business. With the mass adoption of enterprise APIs, organizations quickly are realizing how quickly technology development and business transformation can be married. APIs are allowing companies to dramatically increase revenue streams and connect with partners and customers; all this is being done at a pace never before seen. It’s a massive opportunity, but in many cases there is confusion about how to go forward with a plan. 

I like what the great UCLA basketball coach John Wooden said: “Failing to prepare is preparing to fail.” That could be painted on the walls of almost every software development organization that’s ever written a line of code. We know that the first step to using APIs is to have an API strategy, and inherent in a good, smart strategy is a set of API best practices. In an effort to help IT organizations and developers get ahead in creating APIs, we’ve just published a new eBook, Building Successful APIs. It’s a roadmap to knowing WHAT you want to develop, HOW to gain maximum value from APIs, and WHAT to do to be truly successful with your APIs. 

The eBook covers important topics in API development and management:

          – Creating awareness of the challenges and opportunities inherent in APIs.

          - Determining the business requirements that drive API development.

          – Understanding what the API does.

          – Creating an infrastructure and platform to host APIs.

          – Describing changes needed by IT and business to successfully launch and operate an API.

          – Supporting a development community for the API.

One of the key things that the eBook keys in on is the need to take ownership of your API. We fully believe in the open-ness of APIs and promote the concept of sharing of knowledge across companies and individuals so they can collaboratively arrive at the best solution. But there’s still a need for an API owner to get hyper-focused on their own customer needs and address that through requirements and development efforts. Their name will be on it, and if the organization’s needs and functionality isn’t addressed through the API, then they’ll lose the brand-ability of a very valuable tool. 

So, to help people understand how to brand their API while still extending the use of their API through community collaboration, the eBook goes into detail with practical advice and information on:

          – Developing an API portal

          – Having a developer sandbox

          – Security

          – API lifecycle management

          – Cost/benefit analysis of your API strategy

          – Support

          – Governance and specifications

          – API Quality of Service (QoS)

          – Monitoring usage

          – Sharing and developer communities

We regularly are recognized for innovation and customer service, and this eBook was written with the idea that we can help customers and partners not just by delivering great products, but sharing our knowledge to enable them to deliver their own great products. Check out the eBook and I think you’ll see that once you’re dedicated to an API plan, you’ll be able to rapidly start seeing major rewards.

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