How do you handle changes to your API data model?
The Screena API data model defines the structure of data that is transmitted over the Screena API (Application Programming Interface). Changes to the Screena API data model can have significant implications for the clients integrating with the Screena API.
When the Screena API data model changes, it means that the structure of the data being transmitted over the Screena API has been altered. This can include changes to the format, data types, field names, or the addition or removal of fields. These changes may be necessary to support new features or to optimize the Screena API for performance or scalability.
However, these changes can also introduce risks for integration with third-party systems, including:
- Integration failures: If a third-party system is not updated to handle the changes in the API data model, it may not be able to process the data being transmitted over the API correctly. This can result in integration failures that could impact the functionality of the system.
- Data inconsistencies: Changes to the API data model can also result in data inconsistencies between the third-party system and the API. For example, if a field is removed from the API data model but the third-party system continues to send data for that field, it can lead to discrepancies in the data being transmitted.
- Time and cost of updates: Updating third-party systems to handle changes in the API data model can be time-consuming and costly. If the API changes frequently or without sufficient notice, it can create significant overhead for the third-party system integrator.
- Compatibility issues: If the third-party system relies on a specific version of the API, changes to the API data model could render it incompatible with the system. This can be particularly problematic if the third-party system relies on older versions of the API.
Changes to Screena API data model are considered high-risk and require full integration testing.
Screena communicates changes to the data model in advance, provides adequate documentation and support, and offers backward compatibility when possible.
For every change implemented in the API data model, Screena ensures that no API field is deprecated and no major feature is suppressed without giving a 12-month notice.
Clients should also stay up-to-date on API changes and be prepared to make updates as necessary to ensure continued functionality.