Front to Back Office Integration Without Infrastructure
Splunk is an enterprise software company that makes machine data ￼accessible, usable and valuable to everyone. Splunk has seen one of the ￼fastest growth rates among technology companies. To support this continued growth at scale, the company needed a technology platform for agility – a platform that allows them to go fast while minimizing risk.
Splunk used cloud technologies such as Salesforce for sales, NetSuite for finance, and other custom applications, including one for fulfillment to enable the early days of growth. They used a data extraction, transformation and loading tool (ETL) to manage the data flows between their systems and for an order fulfillment process across their sales, finance and fulfillment teams. But the ETL tool, as most ETL tools are, was a black box, which made it challenging for Splunk’s developers and IT team quickly drive and support innovation.
Moreover, the ETL tool proved to be incompatible with the company’s fast-moving processes and goal to be a 100% cloud platform, as the tool required an on-premises agent. The ETL tool functioned as a black box, streaming a disjointed flow of still manually updated, error-prone data. It did not provide the open access, data visibility or rich developer community that could help Splunk optimize processes, enable rapid applications development, and identify barriers to efficiency.
The tool also did not have adapters that would rapidly deploy to connect Splunk’s multiple systems or an open cloud-based SOA or Integrated Development Environment (IDE). It required an on-premises hosting agent that prevented the IT team from managing and updating the cloud platform itself and that affected the control they had over their own data. The system also ran in 15-minute cycles rather than in real time, limiting the speed of order processing.
As the end-of-year order fulfillment crunch neared, Christopher Nelson, Senior Director of Business Applications at Splunk, felt the urgency to resolve their mounting integration challenges. For Splunk, an entirely cloud-based solution, rather than infrastructure, is imperative. They foresee vast opportunity for developmental growth leveraging MuleSoft’s open, cloud-based platform. The long-term vision is to form the backbone of their entire back office on Anypoint Platform, for a truly integrated front and back office.