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EDI implementation from Initiation to Go-Live

For those considering (or already started) implementing EDI here are some friendly advices.

"EDI is not something you (should) do overnight"

"Your Business should adapt to e-Business"

Your B2B or ERP solution provider will say "we will relieve you from all concerns"

Read one of my other posts (in Dutch) about this relieve "Wij nemen u alle technische en functionele uitdagingen ( lees: problemen) uit handen en zorgen dat het goed komt"

The approach that works and embeds EDI into daily business practice

In a typical Order-to-Cash (O2C) process there are 4 business documents exchanged:
- Purchase Order
- Purchase Order Acknowledgement
- Advanced Ship Notice
- Invoice

Additionally master data can be exchanged / synchronized between trading partners on a regular basis containing:
- Product information
- Price data
- Product characteristics e.g. weights
- Address locations

[Want to know more about master data, read "Supply Chain collaboration - the battle for data".]

The best scenario for implementing EDI business documents with partners consists of a phased-based approach. The overall goal of this approach is to realize a complete and smooth exchange of all agreed business documents and data.

During each phase in the implementation scenario one business document is fully implemented. The implementation phases will overlap to ensure a continuous implementation process.

Phase 0: contains master data alignment
• product information (GTIN – UPC)
• geographic locations (GLN – UPC)
• price data
• product characteristics

Phase 1: implementation of order & order response

Phase 2: contains implementation of shipping notification

Phase 3: contains implementation of invoice

Requirements analysis & agreement phase

Before starting the implementation phases there is a requirements analysis and agreements phase during which following activities are performed:

1. Gather and analyze the EDI requirements (documents, data and process steps)
2. Agree upon the business documents, the data exchanged and alignment of process steps
3. Agree upon the communication protocol used
4. Agree upon the implementation scenario

5. Estimate the impact on a technical level (registration and processing of data)
6. Estimate the impact on a business level (working instructions for order entry, invoicing and shipment)

The joint deliverables of this phase are:
- EDI Trading Partner Data Sheet
- EDI Message Specifications
- Agreed communication protocol
- Agreed list of business documents, data exchanged and process steps
- Agreed implementation scenario

The internal deliverables of this phase are:
- Technical impact: overview of issues and resolutions
- Business impact: enhanced working instructions

Implementation phases

For each agreed business document the implementation will go through 3 stages:
- Setup & test
- Parallel processing
- Consolidate

To be successful the implementation of EDI need to be managed on a day-to-day basis and requires availability of several specialists: EDI Message expert, ERP integration and process experts and B2B Service Provider.

Setup & Test Stage

Technical activities:
- Setup the connection with the EDI environment of the customer
- Implement transformation mappings at B2B Service Provider
- Test the connectivity with EDI environment of the customer
- Verify the syntax and semantics of the EDI message(s) exchanged

Business activities:
- Validate the document created in ERP and check the working instructions
- Agree upon procedures for handling and monitoring the exchange of the business document

- B2B message mapping delivery
- EDI connection both test and production
- Agreed upon internal working instructions and external procedures

Parallel stage

During the parallel phase both business partners will check the completeness and correctness of the EDI-message for a period of 1 month.

EDI documents are leading during this phase. Non-EDI documents are exchanged until both business partners are completely satisfied that the EDI system is performing well.

Consolidate Stage

During the consolidate stage it is important to gather all issues reported and measures taken and come to an agreement with the customer about the way forward.

Organize a User Acceptance Meeting (UAM) with representatives of the customer and the internal organization. During this meeting finalize the list of issues reported and decide whether or not / when the message can go into operation. After the GO/NO Go decision start with the setup of the operational environment (master data, EDI connectivity, working instructions, …)

As a last step before going live inform the organization formally when the EDI message will be taken into operation and what is expected of all people involved.

Deliverables are:
- User Acceptance Document
- Updated issue and resolution list
- Working EDI and ERP environment
- Adapted working instructions

Operation phase

Activities to be performed are:
- Monitor communications to ensure EDI documents continue to flow
- Respond to inquiries from business partners as issues arise
- Report on business partner activity
- Make updates to translation maps and/or communication protocols as new documents are added

Deliverables are:
- Updated issue- and priority list
- Performance overview report
Number of messages received / sent
Number of issues reported and solved
Number of changes requested and performed

My focus areas are business processes, business information systems (ERP, CRM, BPM, ...) and integration of business processes and systems over the boundaries of companies AND not to forget Open Source business applications.

If you have an opinion about the implementation or use of EDI then do not hesitate to react. If you agree with the fundamentals then share it with others.

Tags: e-Business, e-Invoicing, e-Procurement, e-Commerce, EDI


Supply Chain collaboration - the battle for data

"the comparison between ETIM, GS1 GPC International and GS1 DIY"

Read on and learn a little bit:

Did you visit the GS1 conference "Collaboration in the Do-It-Yourself Supply Chain"! Do you want to know what has been said visit the post event page.

Are you now aware of the Information Need - Pressure that is falling down upon the Manufacturer!

Have a look at the ETIM classification model, the eCl@ss model and the UNSPSC®.

The ETIM model can be downloaded freely. Now add to all these models the GS1 DIY product classification model (once it becomes available and accessible!) and maybe the real "product data classification dilemma" is apparent.

I do not have access to the GS1 DIY product classification model but it seems that the GS1 GPC Standard version June 2016 is not taken as the starting point.

How can we see this?

Go to the GS1 GPC Browser and enter:

The result is:

Now go to Doe-het-zelf veldenkiezer and enter:

The result is an URL:

We can see that these are other families, classes and bricks:

The found characteristics (snippet) are:

And now go to the ETIM Classification Management Tool and search for the class EC000125.

You will now see all the characteristics of the Class EC000125.

I am comparing both results and will come back on the findings later.

Main question !?

How are we collaborating in this battle for data? Will there be winners? And who will survive? At what cost?

I went home with a lot of ideas to help manufacterers in their quest for data classification and provisioning.

Love to hear from other visitors what they felt and what they took home!

My focus areas are business processes, business information systems (ERP, CRM, BPM, ...) and integration of business processes and systems over the boundaries of companies AND not to forget Open Source business applications.

If you have an opinion about the utilization of product data classification then do not hesitate to react. If you agree with the fundamentals then share it with others.

Tags: ETIM, GS1, Retail, data pools


Ketensamenwerking - het gevecht voor data

"de vergelijking tussen ETIM, GS1 GPC Internationaal en GS1 DHZ"

Lees verder als u een tip(je) van de sluier opgelicht wil zien:

Bezocht u het GS1 congres "Samenwerken in de doe-het-zelfsector"! Wilt u toch nog weten wat er allemaal gezegd is ga dan naar de post event pagina.

Bent u nu bewust van de Informatie Behoeften en Eisen van buitenaf waaraan fabrikanten nu en in de toekomst moeten voldoen.

Kijk eens naar het ETIM classificatie model, het model van eCl@ss en de UNSPSC®.

Het model van ETIM kan vrij worden gedownload. Voeg aan al deze modellen het GS1 DHZ product classificatie model toe (eenmaal het beschikbaar en toegankelijk is!) en misschien wordt het echte "product data classificatie dilemma" herkenbaar.

De toegang tot het classificatiemodel van de DHZ sector blijft helaas achterwege. Het lijkt er bovendien op dat de GS1 GPC Standaard versie Juni 2016 niet als basis is genomen.

Waaruit kunnen we dat opmaken?

Ga naar de GS1 GPC Browser en vul in:

Dat geeft als resultaat:

Ga nu naar de Doe-het-zelf veldenkiezer en voer in:

Begin Update 7-5-2018]

Dat geeft als resultaat de URL:

Einde update 7-5-2018]

Hieruit valt al op te maken dat het andere families, classes en bricks zijn.

De gevonden kenmerken (snippet):

En ga nu eens naar het ETIM Classification Management Tool en zoek naar de Class EC000125.

Dan ziet u al de kenmerken voor de Class EC000125.

[Begin Update 7-5-2018]

De goederencode kunnen we terugvinden via de website ArcticTARIFF van de Belastingdienst. Als we zoeken naar stopcontact dan vinden we de code 8529 90 65 15.

Eenvoudig is het echter niet om de juiste codes te vinden. Kijk maar even naar de catalogus van Siemens voor het artikel 5UB1551-0KK.

[Einde Update 7-5-2018]

Belangrijkste vraag!?

Hoe werken we samen in deze strijd voor gegevens? Zullen er winnaars zijn? En wie zal overleven? Tegen welke kosten?

Ik ging naar huis met een heleboel ideeën om fabrikanten te helpen in hun zoektocht naar gegevens classificatie en voorziening (provisioning).

Hoor graag van andere bezoekers wat ze voelden en wat ze mee naar huis namen!

U mag het mij ook persoonlijk vertellen, wat u zelf wilt, zie hierna.

Mijn aandachtsgebieden zijn bedrijfsprocessen, bedrijfsinformatiesystemen (ERP, CRM. BPM, ...), integratie van bedrijfsprocessen en systemen over de grenzen van bedrijven EN niet te vergeten Open Source bedrijfsapplicaties.

Als u een mening of visie heeft over het gebruik van product data classificatie aarzel dan niet om deze hier kenbaar te maken. Als u zich kunt vinden in het artikel of de herkenning groot is dan deel het met anderen.


Are you ready for a tailored ERP approach on!

Large ERP suites repeatedly fail to deliver to expectations leading to huge cost overruns and disappointments.

Many companies are reluctant to start their second-time (or third) ERP project and continue struggling. Implementation of ERP, almost always, boils down to "projects limited by technology". While companies only want to automate their business processes, information house-keeping and interactions with upstream and downstream supply chain partners.

Nowadays companies look for alternative agile approaches to shape their business information systems landscape.

One such approach is best-of-breed.

But, an on-premise best-of-breed approach is not a viable option. It requires a strong integration platform and a huge degree of openness of involved applications.

Integration-in-the-Cloud, on the other hand, is a lot easier. A best-of-breed approach using solutions available on the platform can be done smoothly.

Some best-of-breed already working combinations are: Rootstock - FinancialForce and PropelPLM / Rootstock and SalesForce CRM.

I believe that the 'customer-to-customer' processes of a manufacturing company can easily be automated with a best-of-breed approach. Best-of-breed becomes a simple configuration act - in the same way that we configure a bike using the best components available.

Check out the components in the process flow below:

Click here to view the process flow on SlideShare.

[Begin Update: October 2018]

I have been using Archimate lately to model and show existing and future Process- and Application Landscapes. The picture below shows how this would look for the above process flow.

Overview of interesting Cloud-based ( solutions that fit in a best-of-breed approach:

  • Rootstock ERP software
  • Functionality: Cost Accounting, Purchasing, Replenishment Planning, MRP, DRP, Shop Floor Control, Lot Serial Control, Revision Management, Engineering Change Orders, Inventory, AP, AR, General Ledger, CPQ, Product Configurator, Kit handling, ETO, ATO, CTO, MTS, Service Contracts and Warranty Management, Service Return Management, and so on ...

  • Asset Optics
  • Products: Planning & Scheduling, Preventive Maintenance, Work Management, MRO Procurement, Inventory Management, Asset Management

    Reference: Buzzballz

  • PropelPLM
  • Tacton Systems
  • ServiceMax
  • Product: Digital orchestration layer ensures end2end business process orchestration across Salesforce Cloud & best-of-breed cloud services and SAP Business Suite and/or SAP HANA Cloud.

  • Apttus
  • With Apttus you automate your Quote to Cash and your Source to Pay processes. Apttus also offers solutions for the sell-side consisting of e-commerce, contract management, revenue management and CPQ. Moreover Apttus stands next to Oracle in The Forrester Wave™: Configure-Price-Quote Solutions, Q1 2017.

  • DemandWare - Salesforce Commerce Cloud
  • Salesforce Commerce Cloud empowers retailers to unify customer experiences across all points of commerce - web, social, mobile and store.

  • Steelbrick - Salesforce CPQ
  • Configure, Price, Quote (CPQ) with Renewal and Order Automation.

  • CloudCraze
  • B2B companies are transforming their digital engagement strategies to be faster, more agile and scalable. Gain a competitive advantage by using a commerce solution built on Salesforce - CloudCraze.

    [End Update: October 2018]

    The ultimate ERP feel is ‘tailored ERP’.

    If you have read my posts about the innovation of your ERP, the best-of-breed approach fits in the steps Sub-Project Selection Contracting and Sub-Project Implementation. Gradually in time all components needed to support your business are all integrated - implemented.

    "Take the innovation of your ERP-system in your own hands!"

    "Which approach to follow for the innovation of your ERP?"

    My focus areas are business processes, business information systems (ERP, CRM, BPM, ...) and integration of business processes and systems over the boundaries of companies AND not to forget Open Source business applications.

    If you have an opinion about the implementation or the use of ERP in the Cloud then do not hesitate to react. If you agree with the fundamentals then share it with others.

    Tags: ERP, Cloud, BPM, Rootstock, Salesforce, PropelPLM, DSDM


    Bent u klaar voor een op maat gesneden aanpak van ERP op!

    Uitgebreide ERP-suites maken herhaaldelijk de verwachtingen niet waar en leiden tot enorme kostenoverschrijdingen en teleurstellingen.

    Veel bedrijven zijn daarom terughoudend in het starten van hun tweede-generatie (of derde) ERP-project en blijven worstelen met hun legacy-omgeving. Implementatie van ERP komt, bijna altijd, neer op "projecten beperkt door technologie". Terwijl bedrijven alleen hun bedrijfsprocessen, informatiehuishouding en interacties met upstream- en downstream ketenpartners willen automatiseren.

    Tegenwoordig zoeken bedrijven naar alternatieve wendbare benaderingen om hun landschap van bedrijfsinformatiesystemen vorm te geven.

    Een dergelijke aanpak is de best-of-breed.

    Echter, een on-premise best-of-breed-aanpak is geen haalbare optie. Het vereist een sterk integratieplatform en een grote mate van openheid van de betrokken applicaties.

    Integratie-in-de-Cloud, daarentegen, is een stuk eenvoudiger. Een best-of-breed aanpak met oplossingen beschikbaar op het platform kan soepel en vlot ingericht worden.

    Sommige reeds operationele best-of-breed combinaties zijn: Rootstock - FinancialForce en PropelPLM / Rootstock en SalesForce CRM.

    Ik denk dat de ‘klant-tot-klant’ processen van menig productiebedrijf gemakkelijk kunnen worden geautomatiseerd met een best-of-breed aanpak. Best-of-breed wordt dan een gewone configuratie activiteit zoals het configureren van een fiets met behulp van de beste componenten die beschikbaar zijn.

    Bekijk de oplossingen in het verloop van het bedrijfsproces hierna:

    Klik hier om het verloop van het bedrijfsproces te bekijken op SlideShare.

    [Begin Update: Oktober 2018]

    De laatste tijd heb ik Archimate gebruikt voor het modelleren en beschrijven van bestaande en toekomstige Proces- en Applicatielandschappen. Zie Archimate plaatje hieronder hoe het hierboven beschreven proces eruit ziet:

    [Einde Update: Oktober 2018]

    Het ultieme ERP gevoel is 'ERP op maat'.

    Als u mijn berichten over de innovatie van uw ERP gelezen heeft, de best-of-breed aanpak past in de stappen Sub-Project Selecteren en Contracteren. Geleidelijk in de tijd worden alle onderdelen die nodig zijn om uw bedrijf te ondersteunen geïntegreerd en geïmplementeerd.

    "Neem de innovatie van uw ERP-systeem zelf in handen!"

    "Welke aanpak volgt u voor de innovatie van uw ERP?"

    Mijn aandachtsgebieden zijn bedrijfsprocessen, bedrijfsinformatiesystemen (ERP, CRM. BPM, ...), integratie van bedrijfsprocessen en systemen over de grenzen van bedrijven EN niet te vergeten Open Source bedrijfsapplicaties.

    Als u een mening of visie hebt over de invoering of het gebruik van ERP in de Cloud aarzel dan niet om deze hier kenbaar te maken. Als u zich kunt vinden in het artikel of de herkenning groot is dan deel het met anderen.

    Tags: ERP, Cloud, BPM, Rootstock, Salesforce, PropelPLM, DSDM