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API Management 3 minutes

The API as your not-so-secret weapon of defense

RZW pasfoto 2020
Ruben van der Zwan
CEO & Co-Founder
APIs are your not so secret weapon
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People go to war for two reasons. 1. To protect their country from the enemy and 2. to increase their influence on the world (or some nerdy game community). As a business, you do the exact same thing for the same reasons. You try to gain ground while protecting your data and employees. But where soldiers (whether real and brave, or online and nerdy) use all kinds of swords, guns, and shields, all you need is APIs. Because apart from their innovative power, they’re the perfect weapon of defense.

None shall pass

Imagine you own a webshop (you probably don’t but please just go with it). It’s quite successful, and every day thousands of people visit your website to buy your products. Their visits and purchases come with an enormous amount of data your systems have to process. This can be risky, as every time your visitors buy something in your webshop, they get to the core of your organization. They may bring malware into your company or steal away sensitive information, not to mention the risk of a breakdown during peak hours due to data overload. You can solve both issues by deploying APIs. They deal with your visitors and then pass on the information to your systems. This method reduces risks and potential breakdowns at the same time!

Stop the burn outs

Sooner or later, every organization deals with the IT delivery gap. This is the difference between customer demand and the output of your IT department. Now that customers expect you to deliver high quality products in a very short amount of time, it seems impossible to live up to all expectations, let alone exceed them. Products have to be designed, built, tested and launched, and stay relevant and up to date while they’re live. No wonder your IT specialists are under pressure! There are a couple of things you can do to bridge the IT delivery gap, such as deploying an agile work method or integrating the Development and Operations unit to speed up production processes. But why should you do everything yourself? By opening up your API platform to external developers, you have other people do the work for you.

Ready to attack

The best defense is a good offense, so they say. APIs are the perfect tool to overrule competitors, while making sure nobody gets hurt. Because why get into a fight, when you can just run off with the princess and live happily ever after? Thanks to APIs, you enter markets no competitor has even thought of, so there’s no need to fight over them. By leaving the so-called red oceans, which are filled with competitors you have to share with, you can shift to blue oceans that are all yours. All you need, is an API and a brilliant idea. Schiphol Airport, for example, does not fight competition by scheduling more flights, but by adding value to their existing services. They deployed APIs to connect with other transport companies such as taxi firms and bus companies, to get their customer from A to B in the best way possible. Beat that, Dubai!

No more secrets

As a rule, great ideas are not safe. No matter what we come up with, there’ll always be copycats trying to steal our inventions and sell them as their own. The great thing with APIs is that it’s no use copying them. Most of their codes are published anyway, especially when the owner -cleverly- decided to open up his API platform. Today, it’s not about what you have, but what you create. The way you deploy your APIs is unique, as your organization is unique. Soon enough, you’ll gather your own partners and developers that in turn add value to their own services through your API, resulting in a community that exceeds your company walls. Also note that added value is not about being the best, but about offering the most tailored services to your customer base. Find out what they need and love, and adapt your services accordingly.

Whether you try to win, survive or delight: APIs got your back. That’s why we’re so obsessed and can’t stop writing about them. Take advantage of it, and find out what APIs can do for your business! In the white paper below, we tell you how to select an API tool that fits all your requirements (even the ones you didn’t know you had).

Do you have anything to add or edit? Let us know!