TO ERR IS HUMAN… BUT NOT FOR CORPORATE SYSTEMS!
Transferring data error-free is no longer a major undertaking for Konica Minolta Business Solutions Europe thanks to Lobster_data EDI software
“Language is the source of all misunderstanding”, as French writer Antoine de Saint-Exupéry once said. And although computer systems don’t usually speak, they can communicate with each other very well, so long as certain software is available to translate. Konica Minolta Business Solutions Europe uses Lobster_data software from Lobster for its electronic data interchange (EDI) needs, ensuring there are no misunderstandings or miscommunications.
Konica Minolta’s IT environment is complex. Every day, more than 100,000 files flow through the company’s systems at its facility in Langenhagen, near Hanover. This information, which includes orders and supplier data, must be exchanged seamlessly, as any errors in transmission will quickly lead to significant costs. As a result, Lobster_data middleware ensures that the systems can always communicate unfailingly with one another. The software takes care of Konica Minolta’s entire EDI process, as well as its web services and supplying Intranet portals with the data they need.
Automatic business processes
Service-oriented systems architecture is important to the company so they can implement all the different requirements of their customers in a timely manner. With the help of the Lobster software, they’re able to provide web services that can display an order’s status and bring up contact details whenever required from the SAP system. Lobster_data brings together all the information stored on different databases and clearly presents it.
Furthermore, the software supplies Konica Minolta’s Intranet portals with data from internal systems. This data includes employee lists, forms and even their canteen’s lunch menu! Lobster_data automates the entire process, eliminating the need for manual data entry by administrative staff.
A uniform system environment
“With the software, any new requirements can be developed and implemented in a uniform and clearly structured manner”, explains Gunnar Müller, Team Manager ERP Interfaces, Business Experts and IT Services Division at Konica Minolta. “This allowed us to reorganise our heterogeneous converter setup into a uniform system environment. Seven converters, two FTP servers and two Linux systems have been replaced by just four Lobster_data instances”.
Around the clock, the company can easily monitor the current status of the system, where they’re able to quickly resolve any issues that may arise. “In the past, our heterogeneous IT environment made daily monitoring and processing in the event of any errors much more difficult”, explains Gunnar. “Now, we can proactively inform our various departments via the integrated WebmonitorFlex system, for example, or automatic email notifications”.
In future, Lobster_data will also transfer mass data into the master data management system. The software’s SQL Bulk Unit will then be used to process transactions. This should all make data transmissions even faster, safer and more reliable.
To err is human… but mistakes have no place in technical systems. When systems exchange data, mistakes should be rectified immediately or, ideally, not even happen in the first place. At Konica Minolta, this has been par for the course since Lobster software was first introduced.
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