5 things you didn’t know about our integrations

Carl Holloway

Carl Holloway

Founder

We’re ardent believers in best-of-breed, for the simple fact that it’s impossible to be great at everything!

You probably wouldn’t trust a builder who also claims to be an expert electrician, plumber, carpenter, plasterer, decorator and structural engineer. Choosing this builder would relieve you from having to coordinate between multiple tradespeople, but most people decide that’s a price worth paying; safe in the knowledge that each job will be done properly by those who have spent years honing their specialist trades.

The analogy holds true in the software world too, or at least it should. Over the years many businesses have resorted to choosing the jack-of-all-trades builder, often because it was difficult to get the best-of-breed tradespeople to speak to each other. It was a case of, “we’d rather have something that kind of works and one person to blame if it goes wrong”.

Thankfully, technology has moved on. And getting those tradespeople to speak to each other is now easy and risk-free, liberating businesses to pick from the best providers. At Rotaready, we now have over 30 integrations seamlessly connecting Rotaready with EPOS providers, bookings and reservations systems, payroll software, applicant tracking, learning and development tools, and so much more.

Some of our customers have as many as 8 integrations switched on!

To make this possible, we’ve invested hundreds, if not thousands, of hours into forging relationships with partners, building ‘micro-services’ to connect systems together and establishing processes to make sure everything runs like clockwork.

In the hope that I’ve piqued your interest, here’s 5 things you may not know about our integrations:

1. They’re free 🤑

That’s right! We don’t charge a penny for our integrations. There’s no setup cost and there’s no ongoing monthly fee; it’s all included in your Rotaready subscription.

It’s worth asking about this before signing up with a new provider. Many charge a monthly fee for every integration you enable. We’ve even heard some charge a monthly fee when you enable a Rotaready integration with their system; even though Rotaready built the integration and provides support for it. Thankfully you won’t see those tricks from us.

2. Almost all were built by us 🛠

Except for one or two, all our integrations were built by Rotaready in-house. This means we take full responsibility for their reliability and ongoing maintenance. It also means that our support team are fully trained on how they work and can jump in to assist with any queries.

We monitor all our integrations 24/7 and have alerting mechanisms in place, so our engineering team are automatically notified the moment anything goes awry. We’re really proud that our integrations share the same levels of high uptime and reliability as the Rotaready product itself.

3. They’re future proofed 🔮

Again, except one or two, all our integrations are API based. API stands for Application Programming Interface, but we know what you’re thinking… what does that even mean?! In simple terms, it’s the mechanism by which two pieces of software can talk to each other.

This is the modern, secure way of connecting systems together. It means we can send and receive lots of different types of data using a single integration. It’s easy for us to update when systems evolve and improve, as they usually do. And if a system becomes temporarily unavailable or goes offline, it means we can re-request data when it comes back online.

The old-school alternative involves one system periodically uploading a file – typically a spreadsheet – to a specific location, and the other system expecting it to be there when it looks for it. This is sometimes called ‘batch processing’. If there’s a single problem with the data in the file, the whole file is deemed corrupt and needs to be re-supplied. As you can imagine, this rigid approach is unreliable. It isn’t suitable for sending more than one type of data. It’s one-directional. And it means the two systems are out of sync until that process happens; which is typically once per day at best.

4. Many are real-time ⚡️

Thankfully, as our integrations are built using APIs, we can make them real-time, or as close to real-time as is necessary.

This typically depends on the type of integration. Consider a payroll integration, where one of Rotaready’s responsibilities is to create a new employee within the payroll system. The exact moment an employee is added to Rotaready, the integration kicks in and creates a corresponding record in the payroll software. This happens in less than a second.

For an EPOS integration, one of Rotaready’s responsibilities is to fetch sales transactions, so you see accurate sales figures on the rota, in Cost Control and various reports. Our EPOS integrations are usually set to run every hour, but some run as often as every 15 minutes. When this happens, Rotaready fetches all the new sales transactions that were created in your EPOS system since it last ran. This could happen every 30 seconds in theory, but it would place too much demand on your EPOS system’s API. So, we honour best practice by throttling our requests.

5. You can sign-in to other systems with Rotaready 🔒

You can allow your team to sign-in to your other tools and services using their Rotaready credentials.

Crucially it’s safe and secure, using powerful encryption and open industry standards. But the biggest benefit relates to leavers. When you end someone’s employment in Rotaready, they’ll be automatically prevented from signing in to all your connected tools and services.

If the tool or service supports the ‘OIDC’ protocol for single sign-on (SSO), all you need to do is add Rotaready as an identity provider. Just reach out to our support team and they can help you get started.

Don’t forget… you can build your own 👷‍♂️

We have an API that anyone can use. Most of the things you can do in Rotaready can be done programmatically via our API; so there’s no limit to what you can build.

Many of our customers have already built their own custom integrations. Some consume shift data to display on their own internal dashboards; others automatically create an absence request when a Google Form is filled out.

Ask our support team for a copy of our API documentation and access credentials. While we can’t provide coding assistance, we can loop in our engineering team for technical questions about the API’s functionality, limitations and to offer best practice advice. Happy coding!

You can see a list of the integrations currently available on our integrations page.

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