10. Ensure interoperability — copy

Why is this important?

Interoperability refers to the functionality of systems, allowing them to “talk” to one another and “understand” the information they pass to one another.

Most of us benefit from interoperability every day, perhaps without even realizing it. We’re able to read the same messages on our phone, laptop, and tablet. We can quickly log in to a wide variety of systems using our NetID. When we access MyUW, we have quick access to personal information such as our payroll or Wiscard balance.

Delivering this type of functionality to users and providing access to high-quality data for technologists can be elusive in a complex, highly distributed IT environment like UW-Madison. That’s why interoperability is a team sport, most effective when we work together to improve the ways that integrations are done through the use of shared vocabulary, practices, and infrastructure.

Note: Considering interoperability is especially important if you are thinking about buying and integrating a new tool or developing a new solution. See Principle #9 (Choose tools and technology with care) for additional considerations.

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Who can help with this principle?

For general inquiries or to get started, contact the DoIT interoperability team

The DoIT interoperability team is currently developing resources and documentation to support integration and to identify best practices.

How can I get started with this principle?

It can be daunting to get started with putting these principles into practice. Consider using the Design Principles and Practices worksheet linked below to capture information and work through the principles systematically. If you need assistance with this principle, contact the Center for User Experience to schedule a consultation.

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