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Microsoft's latest acquisition wants to make multi-app business processes easier

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Microsoft has announced the acquisition of Clear Software for an undisclosed sum.

Announcing the acquisition in a blog post, Microsoft’s partner general manager, Stephen Siciliano explained that the goal of the acquisition was to “make it a more seamless experience” to use Microsoft’s Power Apps and Power Automate platforms to build automations for systems such as SAP and Oracle.

“Organizations depend on their business applications to work seamlessly across many different systems and data stores. Customers need to know that their most critical business processes are built to optimize working across those systems and data sets, no matter how complex the process becomes,” the blog post reads. “Customers will benefit from stronger Power Platform integration with outside systems.”

Better sync for automation applications

Clear is an IPaaS (integration platform as a service) provider, whose two key products are ClearProcess and ClearWork.

While ClearProcess allows automation applications and workflows to better sync with enterprise resource planning platforms and similar systems of record, ClearWork enables centralized data access for all employees.

With its services, businesses can build integration flows that connect cloud-based processes, apps and data, and currently offers around 100 prebuilt abstractions that can be customized at will, VentureBeat explained.

“Clear’s API access and system knowledge will strengthen Power Platform’s integration with outside systems and accelerate how customers leverage data and processes that reside beyond Microsoft first-party services,” Siciliano continued. “We want to make it easier for customers to integrate a variety of systems when they build business applications with Power Platform … We will share more with customers about how to access the new capabilities in the future.”

Business automation is a booming industry. In 2019, according to Forrester, it created jobs for 40% of companies, while every tenth startup now has more automation software than human workers. A separate McKinsey report argues that in almost two-thirds of occupations (60%), at least a third of tasks could be automated. 

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