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Posts Tagged ‘Mike C’

B2B Communication in the 21st Century

June 25th, 2012

Recently I came across great article on B2B.com and I’m not sure if I should be surprised at the results.

In a poll within the B2B community, 28 percent of the respondents said they exchange data with their partners using an Excel spreadsheet. 28 percent! That’s a significant amount of work being done that has potential for costing you money, a few of which include:

• Human factor (data entry errors, misinterpretation of data, transposition errors, illness)
• Manually entering data into Excel that is stored somewhere else (inventory quantities from an ERP system, for example)
• Excel version incompatibilities
• Format/layout differences amongst partners
• Macro viruses

The article also outlines problems with Excel’s ugly cousin, paper-based communication, which is also widespread. To be fair, I can’t really be too hard on those businesses and individuals. Excel and paper are ubiquitous and Read more…

Integration , ,

Integration Best Practices: “How Do Your Other Customers Do It?”

June 9th, 2011

eBridge PuzzleAs the Technical Sales Engineer at eBridge, one of my duties, along with the Account Rep, is to conduct a needs analysis with prospective clients to determine if the eBridge solution is a good fit.

This is done by:
1) Determining what systems we are to integrate
2) Clarifying what business documents / data / touchpoints need to flow between the systems and in which direction
3) Discussing the business process
4) Addressing a specific pain points and explaining how eBridge can handle it using expertise and technology
5) Putting together an integration solution that involves no or minimal changes to the business process
Read more…

Integration, Technology Corner , ,

Be Online or Be Invisible

June 3rd, 2011

Although it happens less frequently these days, I’m still surprised when a business doesn’t have a website. It doesn’t matter if you’re a fish monger, or a lawyer, a restaurant or a landscaper, if you’re not online, you are going to be increasingly shut out of business opportunities because you will be invisible to those who are searching for you.

Let’s think for a moment about how you used to find businesses you never dealt with before, say a plumber or catering company; you probably used Read more…

Technology Corner

eBridge Blog Time Machine: EDI Revisited

April 21st, 2011

EDIHere at eBridge Connections, we have been putting a lot of emphasis on web store integrations recently but the reality is that EDI is still a major reason companies need to undertake an integration project.

In an effort to realize cost savings throughout the supply chain, more customers than ever are mandating EDI as business requirement. That means that if you want to do business with companies like Walmart, Target, JC Penney, Bed, Bath & Beyond, Home Depot, or any other number of retail or grocery chains, automotive companies or the healthcare industry, you need to be prepared to exchange your business documents electronically, and that usually means EDI. Read more…

EDI Integration, EDI Tips and Tricks, General EDI, eBRIDGE Blog

API’s: The Key to Software Success

March 25th, 2011

In a previous article, I mentioned that in order to truly leverage the power of a (cloud-based) application, an API (application programming interface) should be available to allow you to integrate and share information between systems easily. In other words, if you have a great software application and want others to interface with your software, you should have an API that may extend the reach beyond what you can, or want to do with your product.

An example might help; I’ll try to keep this simple. Here at eBridge Connections, we integrate data (eCommerce, EDI, CRM and others) with accounting systems. A company that sells an invoice billing system recently approached us.  They recognize the value in having invoices from their customer’s accounting system automatically populate their billing system and are looking to eBridge to facilitate the link because eBridge already connects to 40 different accounting systems. eBridge can provide API access to the partner to allow them manage the integration between their billing system and the eBridge integration platform. Everyone wins in this case: the end user doesn’t have to manually key invoices into the billing system, eBridge gains an integration customer without having to do any development, and the partner has a more compelling offering to help promote their product.

Read more…

Technology Corner

2010 in Review – Part 2: Cloud Computing

January 21st, 2011

head in the cloudsIn part one of my 2010 year in review, I looked at the impact social media is having on society and what it means for business owners of all sizes.

It seems like 2010 is also the year I.T. had their heads in the cloud (computing, that is). While most of us already use cloud-based services (Facebook, Gmail, Flickr and YouTube are all examples), the general acceptance of cloud-based software within the business enterprise seems to have reached a point Read more…

Technology Corner, eBRIDGE Blog

2010 Business in Review – Part 1: Social Media

December 22nd, 2010

Social MediaI have a confession. Ok, so it’s not very interesting or news-worthy but considering the statistics and the fact that social media is part of my job, it is a bit embarrassing. Ready for it… Read more…

Technology Corner, eBRIDGE Blog

eCommerce Sales Exceed $1 Billion for Cyber Monday – Yes, that’s Just 1 Day!

December 7th, 2010

If you ever thought that online shopping hasn’t made the mainstream, think again.  On Cyber Monday, Nov. 29, 2010, there was reportedly more than 1 billion dollars ($1.028 billion to be exact) spent in online sales in the U.S. for the first time ever as reported by comscore.com What makes this story this even more compelling is November saw the loss of 28,000 retail jobs in November.
Read more…

eCommerce , , ,

Are You Ready for Black Friday and the Holiday Shopping Season?

November 17th, 2010

Black Friday Holiday Shopping Season 2010Inventory levels…check
Promotions, deals and coupons…check
Extended hours…check
Gift wrap…check
Data capture and mining…what?

First off, I’m assuming you have a website. You DO have a website, don’t you?

There are dozens of things you should be doing to optimize traffic to your business through online and retail channels. I won’t get into any of those this time (see the end of this post for links); instead I want to make sure you’re aware of two tools you need to use to improve your website and your understanding of your website visitors. When February rolls around and you want to analyze your sales, you’ll be glad you had the foresight to start gathering this information now!

Read more…

Technology Corner , , , , ,

6 Factors for Real-Time Integration…Buzzword or Real Need?

October 22nd, 2010

Real-time processing implies that processing of data happens upon the completion of an event (request for data for example) and is immediately handed off to the next system that processes immediately and so on. Here, I’m mainly referring to the flow of information through the supply chain and the speed at which that information travels, which helps orchestrate the flow of materials and resources. Access to information in real-time provides business intelligence that allows decisions to be made about any changes that may be needed for the orchestration.

An example always helps so let’s look at something I come across at least a few times a month:

Read more…

Integration, Integration as a Service, eCommerce , , , ,