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We recently surveyed 800 IT professionals across Europe to find out the pressures they are facing as well as how they’re using APIs to improve their businesses. The results were clear – moving faster and becoming more agile are the top priorities for IT execs in 2016.

Over three-quarters of IT professionals said the pressure to deliver IT services from across the organization had increased over the past 12 months. 66 percent said that change was needed in order to meet a “significant” or “drastic” increase in pressure. That pressure has traditionally come from mainly sales and marketing departments, but it’s now also coming from finance and operations, C-level executives, and research and development.

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“IT is now critical to a company’s ability to stay competitive in a rapidly changing business environment,” said Ross Mason. “IT teams are facing growing pressure from the boardroom and from every corner of the organization. The old IT operating mode is fractured. IT leaders are looking to an API strategy to reduce the complexity of their landscape, unlock assets and enable much greater agility through accessibility and reuse.”

The majority of companies who had an API strategy in place said they are currently using APIs to free data, specifically link new software with existing systems and applications (72 percent) or unlock data silos (55 percent). 52 percent also indicated the need to increase agility and enable business teams to self-serve IT as a reason for having an API strategy.

Mason added, “We are seeing CIOs shift from traditional IT delivery models to delivering capabilities to their business, allowing the consumers of these capabilities to build their own applications and processes. This is the decentralisation of IT, where IT no longer owns the applications but are governors of the data. This contributes to the expanding partnership between business and IT. The key step will be decentralizing IT by opening up APIs to developers and lines-of-business, so they can gain access to reusable data to try out new products or explore new digital services.”

And finally, the need for increased agility was also shown to be behind much of the interest in microservices. 38 percent of respondents said they were currently using microservices. Of those that weren’t, 44 percent said they were planning to do so. 26 percent were planning to leverage microservices within the next six months.  Respondents using or thinking of using microservices identified the ability to add new features or capabilities without re-writing a whole application as most important.

Take a look at the full survey results. In addition, here’s more information on how MuleSoft’s Anypoint Platform can enable speed and agility in your business.