How to break that hand-coding habit

Developers still fiddling with new connectors every time a new project comes down the pike? Here are seven steps for moving to a more automated and process-driven approach.
Written by Joe McKendrick, Contributing Writer

Despite all the tools and platforms available for integration, hand-coding is still rife in enterprises. Is this a bad thing?  Loraine Lawson says maybe it is, maybe it isn't -- and observes that a lot of IT leaders find it to be the quickest path of least resistance when something needs to get done.

What's the best way to alleviate all that inefficient hand coding of integration projects, and move to a better, more automated or at least process-oriented way?  Loraine outlines seven steps that will set you enterprise on a more productive path:

  1. Make a commitment to fix integration -- strategically.
  2. Break down IT silos, which create a mish-mash of tools and redundant work.
  3. Get the business involved.
  4. Create an integration portfolio.
  5. Form an Integration Competency Center to bring the business and IT to common ground.
  6. Invest in standards to ensure consistency in your efforts.
  7. Invest in a data integration platform. "Time and time again, the experts say it's worth the investment," Loraine says -- in the long run, it's cheaper than paying developers to hand code each time a project comes along.

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