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How using APIs leads to better business decisions

– August 7, 2014 –

“Businesses are increasingly recognizing APIs as a key ingredient to participate in the digital economy” (Björn Goerke, Forbes article).

With access to countless amounts of data at our fingertips, the future is being paved by Application Programming Interfaces, or APIs. Simply put, an API is a software program that allows one software program to interact with another software program. Any two-computer systems, regardless of location or operating system, are able to communicate using APIs. This, and the fact that they are built modularly, allows for APIs to bypass many problems commonly associated with getting two different software programs to communicate.

Think about any time you have seen a Google map on a website – this is being populated by an API that has made a call to the Google service. That is an API at work.

How API Benefits You

In payments, APIs translate to faster, smarter boarding, with reduced costs and increased productivity.

Since APIs are intended for two operating systems to interact, they are not intended for interaction with individuals. People are connected to the functionality of the API, not necessarily the tool.

This helps reduce manual review and contributes to reduced costs, especially in time consuming processes like due diligence. Once the API sends back clean, structured data results, users can have automated responses match their workflows. They can then automatically approve or board merchants by way of an API, increasing productivity and minimizing a user’s manual inputs.

Synchronous and Asynchronous APIs

These two types of APIs have a couple of differences, the main difference being that synchronous APIs deliver results in a single call. This is possible because synchronous APIs are simpler and take less time to complete the task.

Asynchronous APIs deal with results that are not immediately available. A request ID is issued and then used to retrieve the data, once available. Synchronous APIs are simpler and more readily used.

By utilizing the benefits of APIs, due diligence and boarding no longer have to be a time-consuming task. With APIs, due diligence is becoming an automated, real-time process that can help increase productivity and reduce costs, while still fulfilling due diligence requirements on your merchants.

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