What’s in Store for Adapt Integrations?
From online timesheets and social media integrations, to video interviews and big data analytics, Rob Hayesmore, Head of Product Development, Bond International Software, explains how building a smarter API makes third party recruitment software integrations easier – and why an exciting Adapt App Store is on the horizon.
What do ‘API’ and ‘Open API’ mean?
Software applications are built by programmers using an API (Application Program Interface), which is a set of routines, protocols and tools.
The best APIs make it easier for programmers to build software by providing all the required building blocks for them to assemble.
‘Open API’ is a popular term for an API which is especially helpful when integrating software with further applications, such as Sage ‘bolting-on’ to Adapt to run payroll tasks. Having an ‘Open API’ is considered a must, but this idea is only the beginning…
What are ‘Workflows’ and ‘Business Objects’?
Bond have a number of integration technologies for Adapt. Web Services is the most commonly used. Web Services is a SOAP (Simple Object Access Protocol) based API. Created for developing APIs five or six years ago, SOAP offers very useful, open technology and is duly recognised as industry standard. In Adapt, SOAP provides access to everything, but requires programmers have technical knowledge of the underlying application to carry out their work.
Every task run in Adapt is a ‘workflow’ and every workflow has a number of components. When users log a phone call, for example, that workflow is associated with a menu and a button so it can be launched.
A ‘business object’ is a piece of programming code that carries out workflow tasks, such as taking information from client and candidate records and using it to pre-populate the log a phone call window. Every time a window opens, the associated business objects pre-load all relevant information and new information can be input by the user to carry out workflows.
The next generation
The business objects forming an API automate a number of tasks that an integrator (third party software looking to ‘bolt-on’) may like to carry out. The advantage of using business objects is the background logic involved in recording phone calls for example (including creating journal entries, updating contact dates, updating consultant activity and adding information to KPI reporting), is taken care of by the business object.
Linked Server View is a complimentary technology to SOAP which Bond uses to enable web-based Adapt interfaces, including Broadbean and Daxtra, and this option works very well. However, Bond are continuously looking at the benefits of next generation technology and workflows and business objects remain integral.
Delivering the REST
For over two years now, Bond have provided integrators with straightforward business objects for performing specific tasks, such as the ones described above, via Web Services. Instead of integrators needing to understand the logic behind Adapt performing tasks and then writing code into their application, Bond’s business objects hold the Adapt logic and the integrator simply requests them. Using business objects also focuses the API more on recruitment activity and functionality.
Bond took a big step by moving to REST (Representational State Transfer), which meant harnessing the power of HTTP (Hypertext Transfer Protocol) and HTTP services to build an API.
The result is to provide interfaces which mirror the recruitment application, not just the underlying system it’s built upon. In effect, creating a full layer of comprehensive business objects giving access to how Adapt works – enabling third parties to easily integrate with Adapt.
‘Off the shelf’ integrations
Currently, Bond have a number of standard integrations, including Broadbean, cube19 and Daxtra. These were built via collaborations between Bond and those companies.
With the new API, we have really opened up the market by enabling a huge raft of third party software providers to develop and offer off the shelf integrations – hugely increasing the breadth of software available to bolt on to Adapt and deliver additional business benefits.
‘Adapt App Store’ coming soon
Keep an eye on our blog for the latest developments…