Interfaces

ELCA can help you to define, implement and test interfaces, in particular by using simulators.

Nowadays there are hardly any IT applications that are able to operate without exchanging information with other systems which, in turn, are connected to a greater or lesser degree. The management of exchanges is a key point when it comes to improving the work processes and reducing processing errors.

Good interfaces need to have a business focus, in other words they need to be in line with the processes to be implemented. The data to exchange, its sensitivity and how critical it is must be analysed and well designed, particularly in situations, which are becoming increasingly frequent, where several systems share the management of certain data, without it being possible to ascertain clearly who owns the data. In this case, simultaneous updating of the same data needs to be organised.

When exchanges between systems become routine, it is necessary to arbitrate between individual, more flexible exchanges and the more efficient batch exchanges, which are the only means of accommodating the increased load. There are also grounds for choosing between synchronous or asynchronous interfaces.

One aspect of interfaces, which is more difficult to manage, relates to the analysis and processing of errors. When two systems fail to communicate as expected, the tools must be available to enable the cause to be located. Who is responsible – the sender, the recipient or the data communications channel? Only a carefully designed concept and exploitation of code will make it easy to obtain more information efficiently. During the design phase, our specialists will also develop simulators which will allow us to refine and validate a system, even in the absence of the external systems with which it needs to interface.

The interfaces are similar to contracts – not only from a technical point of view but also from an organizational and operational point of view.