We've automated the whole process flow of ideas - from idea creation, changing status through vote tallies over time, messaging idea authors at the appropriate time during the ideas lifecycle, and customizing the stages that ideas can occupy.
Integration with an external system, as long as it has a network reachable API, should not be difficult.
Let me know if you'd like more info.
Could we chat a bit further about this? What I'm looking for is a high-level estimate of work effort and cost.