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What effect does an API ecosystem have on the network?

While an API deployment may seem like a small task, it can have a major effect on the network. IT groups should work with business units to monitor network traffic.

Application integrations and an API ecosystem can have widespread effects on the network, ranging from negligible to network-crushing.

For example, deploying an API to enable click-to-call in Salesforce to trigger a user's desk phone or softphone will probably have no additional effect on the network. However, if that same click activates a multiparty high-definition video conference, the network would be affected significantly -- particularly if the video conference takes place outside the organization's preferred conferencing platforms.

The biggest effect of an API ecosystem on the network will be the applications of which the IT organization is not aware. The emergence of communications platform as a service enables line-of-business leaders and developers to deploy their own API ecosystems and integrate communications into applications without IT intervention. In the video conference example above, network administrators could account for and address that traffic, but only if they are aware of that API deployment.

As is often the case, IT leaders should work closely to align themselves with the organization's lines of business to understand the changing needs of their users. Without that alignment, the API ecosystem could take shadow IT to a whole new level.

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