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IT Priorities 2019: IT decision-makers plan for APIs

The latest Computer Weekly/TechTarget IT Priorities survey shows that IT professionals are deploying business process automation, but application programming interfaces are not far behind

Business process automation is expected to be the top software development project this year, according to the Computer Weekly/TechTarget IT Priorities research for 2019.

The survey, of 1,578 IT professionals in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA), found that business process automation is the most popular software development project among EMEA IT professionals (59%), whereas the figure for the 387 UK IT professionals surveyed was under half of that, at 23%.

API (application programming interface) management came a close second, suggesting that automation between business applications needs APIs to connect different systems and orchestrate business processes.

In 2018, APIs and agile topped the software development initiatives. This year, the proportion of UK IT professionals who put API management among their main software development priorities remained roughly the same. Just over one-fifth of the UK IT professionals in the survey (22%) put API management in their selection of top projects for 2019; just over a quarter said the same last year.

But in Europe, almost half (48%) of the IT professionals who took part in the survey listed API management as one of their top software development priorities.

APIs can span organisations to enable business process automation to cross company boundaries. In fact, API management is a key requirement for organisations looking to build out new business models based on close collaboration with partners.

Accenture’s report The post-digital era is upon us: are you  ready for what’s next? noted: “Companies are increasingly integrating their core business functionalities with third parties and their platforms. But rather than treat them like the partnerships of old, forward-thinking leaders leverage these relationships to build their role in new digital ecosystems – instrumental to unlocking their next wave of strategic growth.”

Elsewhere in the survey, just over one-fifth of UK IT professionals said they are deploying tools to support DevOps such as agile project management, continuous integration and configuration management.

IT automation remains a top priority, with one-third of the UK IT professionals surveyed having IT automation as one of their broad IT initiatives, which is more less the same as in 2018. Similarly, one-third of EMEA IT professionals put IT automation as one of the broad initiatives they plan to undertake in 2019.

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