What Is Cloud Integration? Definition, Types, and Benefits

5min read



Cloud integration is the process of bringing together applications and data from various sources so your organization can use them more effectively. Learn how to make your organization more efficient with cloud integration that facilitates remote work, data sharing, and collaboration.

Why use cloud integration?

Today, most organizations use some form of cloud services, whether it’s commercially available software, such as Salesforce, or their own applications hosted on Google Cloud, Amazon AWS, or Microsoft Azure.

Cloud integration makes it easier for organizations to combine data from all these different sources. Using cloud integration tools, your team can benefit from improved access to data, more powerful and flexible data views, and more adaptive operations.

6 benefits of cloud integration

Cloud integration can significantly improve your company’s efficiency. Common benefits include the following:

  1. Improved operational efficiency: Cloud integration frees you from needing to allocate resources toward operating intricate hardware, servers, or other complex infrastructure setups.
  2. Better communication between remote teams: Access all the data your teams need without compromising security or efficiency.
  3. Enhanced customer experience: With access to data from multiple sources in real time, you can offer better customer service and support. Customers can manage parts of their accounts online while giving customer-facing staff, including sales, marketing, and support team members, access to everything they need for their work.
  4. Reduced operational costs: Instead of spending time, money, and energy on workarounds to manage multiple data sources, your IT team can focus on other areas of the business.
  5. Improved agility: Access to more information and reporting tools helps your business make better data-driven decisions. Streamlined communication and data-sharing make implementing those decisions a simpler process.
  6. Get ahead of the competition: If your competitors aren’t taking advantage of cloud integration, they’ll be one step behind when making business-critical decisions. Use your knowledge advantage to gain a competitive edge.

The above are just a few key examples of how cloud integration can aid your organization. Other benefits include increased flexibility and scalability, as well as the potential to increase revenue through more efficient operations.

Types of cloud integration

Cloud integration comes in several forms, depending on the platforms the organization uses and the nature of the data being processed. Broadly, cloud integration platforms support the following types of integration:

Cloud-to-cloud integration

If you have several cloud applications or data warehouses you need to pull data from, cloud-to-cloud integration lets you access the information from those clouds in a more consistent and streamlined way.

Cloud-to-on-premises integration

Some organizations use a mixture of on-premises hosting and software-as-a-service or cloud hosting. Unifying the data from these services can be challenging, but cloud integration tools offer a user-friendly way to access and synchronize data from several sources.

Data integration

This makes it possible to synchronize data between different repositories. During this process, the data can be processed or transformed to suit the reporting and access needs of the organization.

Application integration

Tools such as SAP cloud integration help connect various applications in a way that promotes interoperability and allows for automation. These tools can issue commands or send requests to cloud applications to trigger business processes.

Cloud integration platforms

There are several popular cloud integration platforms on the market today from major vendors. Here are some of the most popular:

  • Boomi: This platform helps you unite your data, processes, and applications in one straightforward interface. You can manage your APIs, build workflows, and even create applications with an intuitive, low-code system.
  • IBM App Connect: This platform is ideal for integrating on-premises and cloud-hosted applications thanks to its no-code tools. It makes workflow creation and business automation simple.
  • JitterBit: Take advantage of this platform’s powerful interface to integrate cloud, on-premises, and SaaS applications from numerous vendors. You can integrate existing third-party APIs with new APIs you create on the platform to customize the software for your needs.
  • Operations Hub: With Operations Hub, you can automatically synchronize data between applications. For example, if a customer's data is updated in your contact center application, Operations Hub can change it on your online store or in Salesforce. Maintain the integrity of your customer databases to cultivate better data for informed operational decisions.
  • Zapier: This tool supports more than 1,000 web apps and offers numerous options for automating common workflows. The easy-to-use interface and no-code development options ensure anyone can take advantage of the power of cloud integration.
Cloud integration use cases

Cloud integration tools are advantageous in many industries. Any organization that processes data or relies on cloud services will likely benefit from cloud integration. 

Here are some conventional use cases:

Health care

Data silos prevent efficient communication between healthcare providers, making it harder for them to offer a high standard of patient care. Cloud integration platforms help providers share information in a robust and reliable way.

Public sector

Public sector organizations use cloud integration extensively to offer services to the public and ensure local authorities or government organizations have access to the data they need. Everything from motor vehicle licensing and taxes to voter registration and public assistance relies on cloud services. Cloud integration helps maintain the integrity of that data.

Supply chain management

As supply chains become increasingly complex, processes like tracking, reporting, and real-time data-sharing must keep pace. A combination of internet of things (IoT) technologies and cloud integration helps manufacturers, retailers, and supply chain companies collect, share, and manage data.

Remote working

Many organizations lack the resources to run their own data centers so remote workers can do their jobs. Existing cloud services platforms fill a valuable role here. However, it can be difficult for remote employees to find what they need when information is spread across numerous platforms. Fortunately, API integrations allow secure and efficient access to data from multiple SaaS/PaaS sources.

Financial services

Banks and other financial institutions often provide several products from different branches of the organization. Customer service for these products requires access to information about savings accounts, credit cards, mortgages, loans, and other products. Cloud integration tools facilitate the secure sharing of essential information across departments.

Enjoy the benefits of cloud-based EDI with Orderful

Whatever industry you're in, EDI integration helps you use your data more effectively. Orderful’s cloud-based EDI solutions make electronic transactions more efficient and reliable, so you stay ahead of the competition.

If you’d like to know more about how Orderful can help your organization better use its electronic data, contact us and speak to an expert in cloud-based EDI solutions.


Go live with new trading partners in days, not months. Orderful’s modern EDI platform standardizes integrations and streamlines testing, getting your business connected with partners 10x faster than other solutions.

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