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Best of breed in payments

There has long been a debate as to whether it is better to run one fully-integrated system or several pieces of 'best-of-breed' software in many areas of application software, and payments is no exception, especially when looking at the corporate front end through to the payment processing engine in the bank’s back office.

‘Best-of-breed’ by definition implies that the software’s functionality is better than that offered by the equivalent part of the fully-integrated system. That had to be weighed against the advantages of the integrated system, notably having just one supplier to deal with, and with reduced systems integration work. Either way, there was some kind of compromise to be reached. In many ways though, this has become something of a sterile debate. The fact is that many enterprise solutions today comprise ‘best-of-breed’ components.

We’ve seen the ‘best-of-breed’ approach largely eliminated in the hardware space (standard hardware platforms are the rule, not the exception). Perhaps payment software is moving in that direction as well, and no longer does taking an integrated end-to-end system involve compromise. Instead of 'integrated or best-of-breed', perhaps the real question is: can you trust your payments software partner vendor to be with you for the long run?

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