The MACH Alliance (Microservices-based, API-first, Cloud-native SaaS and Headless) is a collective of forward-thinking technology companies with a desire to create change in the digital space. Their primary focus is to drive the digital transformation for enterprise clients by advocating for a transformative user experience online. With best-of-breed architecture at the forefront, The MACH Alliance connects its members and their customers with flexible, intuitive enterprise technologies that enhance the commerce experience.

Transitioning from Legacy Systems to Headless

Globally, the fine-tuning of the digital experience has become the focus of organizations, specifically at the enterprise level. As new functionality and desired capabilities arise, the obsolescence of legacy platforms is becoming more apparent. The transition to headless commerce—where your digital storefronts (e.g. web. mobile)  connects to your back-end through APIs—is quickly becoming the wave of the future. This headless approach is the best way to ensure your digital experience remains relevant to customers.

Enterprise organizations no longer want to be locked into a single vendor due to its legacy system’s inability to adapt. Simply put, the adaptability and flexibility required to create new, intuitive digital experiences doesn’t exist with legacy systems. To remain relevant and connected to their consumer base, it is imperative that organizations commit to the research and resources that will keep their digital experiences ahead of the curve.

Restructuring Teams for the MACH-Centric Approach

From an organizational standpoint, the MACH-centric approach upends the typical monolithic structure of having one large digital team. With a myriad of microservices at play, MACH decentralizes the core planning team and instead assigns a digital team of 5-10 developers to take ownership for each service. This structure allows for each digital team to become both experts and decision-makers in the development of their specific microservice without impacting the platform overall.

Creating an “Away Team” is essential to ensuring that functionality development can continue for a microservice even when bandwidth is low. An Away Team will take on the development of functionality in place of the team who owns that microservice. For example, if a team within the organization needs to add functionality to the shopping cart but the cart team does not have bandwidth, the Away Team will step in and develop the code needed for the desired functionality. The cart team will then approve the work, conduct the testing and take ownership of the new code.

Video: commercetools + MACH + Object Edge

Benefits of the MACH-Centric Structure

At its core, the MACH-Centric Approach allows for more flexibility within a platform by decentralizing the decision making. There is no longer one large team making the decisions without full visibility, but instead there are multiple teams owning one product each with the holistic vision of the platform in mind. This structure not only enables an organization to be nimble in its approach, but also encourages thought-leadership and innovation around each microservice. 

Object Edge Joins the MACH Alliance

This idea of continued innovation and thought leadership has led Object Edge to join the MACH Alliance in an effort to support the continuous evolution of the digital experience. Object Edge is fundamentally aligned with the idea of building scalable experiences through best-of-breed architecture. By joining the MACH alliance, underscores its commitment to a flexible, effortless and customer-centric approach to complex digital systems.

About the Author

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Rajiv Ramachandran

Senior MACH Architect

Rajiv is a software veteran focusing on large scale service architectures. He uses his diverse background across security, speech, retail and infrastructure services to help customers in identifying the right technical solutions to business problems.

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