Understanding the current and potential capabilities of your organization’s APIs is an important way to ensure your brand is able to stay up-to-date with the evolving digital world…
Through undergoing a process of API readiness within your organization, you will help to proactively protect and improve your organization’s digital presence with the implementation of well-designed APIs.
What is an API?
An API (Application Programming Interface) is a software intermediary that uses sets of protocols and definitions to build and integrate application software. APIs enable two applications to interact and communicate with one another, through the sharing of relevant data. In addition to helping improve your brand’s customer experience, APIs can help to accelerate change within your organization by enabling new, forward-thinking business strategies to emerge.
What is API readiness?
API readiness is an ongoing process that can help your business to better understand its current technical capabilities and highlight any inadequacies or inefficiencies within your organization’s current API strategies. API readiness surfaces opportunities for growth and identifies new systems that can be incorporated into your business to help increase its ability to stay up-to-date with the ever-changing digital world.
API readiness can be broken down into the following four categories:
- Functional Readiness – API responsiveness, API specification and implementation accordance, client workflow support, acceptable performance levels
- Material Readiness – Authoring/editing using established formatting and tooling, discoverable documentation, use-case documentation as needed, API changelog
- Environmental Readiness – Suitable development and test environments with test data, stable production and production-like (staging) environments, security
- Operational Readiness – Defined deployment processes, build promotion, deployment strategies, deploy documents, database backups
Why is API readiness important?
API readiness should be a major focus for your business in 2022, especially because there is an increasing demand for digital access to brands at any given moment. Opening your business to the digital world is a significant move, underlying system complexity can make this process even harder to imagine. However, it’s never too early to begin making API powered in-roads to important data that consumers so desperately need and want.
How to implement API readiness
In order to implement API readiness successfully, your organization should undertake readiness assessments throughout the entire development lifecycle – from design through deployment.
Before designing new APIs, it is essential to examine your company’s current capabilities and account for any architectural and technological inadequacies related to industry best practices. The design process itself should involve clearly communicating the current and potential capabilities of your organization’s APIs and reviewing the design decisions to ensure they can be supported. During the development process, the limitations of APIs need to be communicated across your business and new requirements for these APIs should be discussed and adjustments made accordingly.
By deploying development environments to explore and test APIs, your company’s live mobile and web applications will not be impacted by potentially unstable development activity. Test environments should yield data representative of production to ensure that the right resources are being utilized during the testing process. During the early stages of API design, before long-term implementation is in place, mocking should be employed to give consumer’s the ability to explore the API.
What are the benefits of API readiness?
The key benefit of conducting API readiness within your organization is that it establishes trustworthy and reliable APIs. The process provides a comprehensive view of the current state of your organization’s APIs and, as such, your business will be able identify any work that needs to be undertaken to improve and support the desired user experience. By identifying any inadequacies in your company’s strategy early on, you can avoid roadblocks to digital progress in the future.
How Can Bottle Rocket Help?
Our experienced team at Bottle Rocket can liaise between your company’s development teams and work towards designing a practical solution for improving the capabilities of your organization. As a digital experience consultancy that provides business strategy, product, design and technology services, Bottle Rocket drives sustained positive results for your business.
Bottle Rocket’s committed team of experts can help your company achieve API readiness by delivering well-designed assessments for your organization.