In the modern business landscape, data is the driving force behind intelligent decision-making. However, in a hosted environment, providing customers with access to the data they desire for their Business Intelligence (BI) and Analytics needs is often challenging. The dashboards and reporting built into a SaaS solution only gets customers part of the way there and trying to add support for their specific BI “asks” is difficult, costly and unscalable. SaaS vendors have three options when trying to meet customer reporting requirements:
1. Embedded Analytics: Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) can embed a third-party analytics product and make it look and feel like their own through custom integration and white labeling.
2. Standards-Based Analytics: They can add support for standard APIs that enables customers to use the analytics solution of their choice of BI tools to connect to the ISV's cloud application or underlying data.
3. Hybrid: They can support both strategies.
These situations are when Progress DataDirect Hybrid Data Pipeline comes to the rescue, offering a powerful platform to securely provide multi-tenant, highly available data access using industry standards ODBC, JDBC and OData. Progress ensures that leading BI tools like Power BI, Tableau and others can connect to your SaaS application, but still give you complete control.
In this blog, we'll explore the numerous benefits of using DataDirect Hybrid Data Pipeline to securely provide access to SaaS data, whether it's in a relational database or shared via a REST API, to provide the standards-based hybrid solution.
Embedded analytics might help a SaaS vendor gain a competitive edge, yet embedding an analytics solution takes time and effort. Finding a solution with all the features and functions SaaS customers might want is challenging, often leading to customer development work.
Although some customers may be satisfied when a SaaS application includes a dashboard for basic analytics, larger organizations expect to connect to SaaS applications using their company-issued BI tools, such as Tableau, Power BI or Qlik, and languages such as R or Python. With a standards-based approach, they can query individual SaaS applications to get operational data, or query multiple cloud and on-premises applications and stitch together the results into a single report or database that others in their organization can utilize.
DataDirect has seen SaaS vendors struggle with building APIs and data connectors and we have delivered a data connectivity solution to simplify the task. DataDirect Hybrid Data Pipeline offers connectivity solutions that deliver a data access layer for standards-based analytics via ODBC, JDBC and OData interfaces which can be run right next to your SaaS application in the cloud.
Additionally, SaaS vendors who still have customers running on-premises versions of their commercial application can make it even easier for those customers to migrate to the newer cloud version of that application by continuing to offer SQL access to the application or underlying data, despite the platform change.
One of the most significant advantages of using Hybrid Data Pipeline is its emphasis on data security. Hybrid Data Pipeline enables secure data access over HTTPS, ensuring that sensitive information is encrypted during transit, making it less susceptible to data breaches and unauthorized access. You won’t need to worry about opening ports directly to your databases or configuring VPN access. This level of security is crucial, especially when dealing with critical business data that requires protection against potential cyber threats.
Hybrid Data Pipeline also separates front-end authentication from database authentication. You won’t need to provide your customers with database credentials—they can use local Hybrid Data Pipeline credentials, as well as LDAP or even OpenID Connect (OIDC) for OData access.
In addition, Hybrid Data Pipeline employs a multi-tenant security architecture, enabling organizations to manage and segregate user access based on roles and permissions. This feature ensures that users can only access the data they are authorized to see and simplifies administration.
Finally, Progress Hybrid Data Pipeline provides multiple protocols for data access, including OData REST APIs and SQL access via ODBC and JDBC. These industry-standard protocols empower users to connect their BI tools seamlessly with various data sources hosted in SaaS applications. Regardless of the tools your customers want to use, they will be supported.
Hybrid Data Pipeline emerges as a powerful and easy solution to overcome the challenges of accessing and integrating SaaS applications or relevant data with customer BI applications. Its secure, flexible and scalable architecture empowers organizations to gain valuable insights from their data and make data-driven decisions confidently. By providing OData, ODBC and JDBC access over HTTPS, the Hybrid Data Pipeline proves to be a game-changer in the realm of SaaS data access. Embrace this solution to quickly unlock the true potential of your SaaS application data and stay ahead in the competitive organizational landscape.
To learn more about how Hybrid Data Pipeline can benefit your SaaS application and improve customer experience, please reach out for a live demo with one of our solutions engineers.
Aaron Burg is a sales engineer with Progress. He has worked in the IT space for 20 years, focusing on the systems administration and security. This broad experience has allowed him to be a valuable resource for customers looking to implement Progress DataDirect’s connectivity solutions.
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