As part of an effort to move beyond simply being a mechanism for more efficiently procuring cloud services, AppDirect has announced the acquisition of Xendo, a provider of hosted enterprise search services.
AppDirect president and co-CEO Daniel Saks says this is the start of an effort by AppDirect to help organizations craft workflows across silos of cloud and on premise services. All too often end users find themselves manually cutting and pasting data between software-as-a-service (SaaS) applications. Xendo provides a mechanism for discovering what data is stored in both cloud and on premise applications. Later on, Saks says, AppDirect will extend that capability to make it simpler for organizations to automate workflows across multiple applications.
Xendo CEO Julian Gay says the company created a hosted version of an enterprise search engine because many IT organizations found deploying their own search engine appliance to be too difficult an undertaking. Xendo, says Gay, is designed to be invoked directly by an end user as well as incorporated within a third-party application using REST application programming interfaces (APIs). At present, Gay says, Xendo works across 30 cloud and on premise applications, including Salesforce and Dropbox, with support for more to come.
In addition, Xendo is working on incorporating machine learning algorithms to make it possible to deliver predictive and prescriptive analytics capabilities starting later this year.
Organizations of all sizes are struggling with an explosion of applications, regardless of whether a SaaS application was deliberately invoked by the internal IT organization or brought through a back door as a shadow IT service. More often than not, it costs twice as much to integrate those applications as it did to acquire. The result is not only a much higher total cost of computing than anticipated, the actual productivity of the organization starts to suffer as employees find themselves navigating multiple user interfaces on a daily basis.
Obviously, providing an enterprise search service is only one step in helping to address that issue. But until end users can figure out what data is actually stored where, for most organizations, building an integrated workflow across multiple cloud applications will remain more of an aspiration than an actual possibility.