It is seldom that the words “Zen” and “integration” are used together but, as the B2B integration industry evolves, its transportive nature is showing itself.
“Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower,” as Steve Jobs, technology thought-leader and guru who promoted his products with the Zen-like conviction of a man convinced of his vision, famously said.
On balance, the business-to-business integration industry has served both as innovator and follower. Indeed, it has been many years since leading B2B solution providers stopped following (or reacting), and recognized the need-to-lead. They needed to innovate the next-generation of tools for improving efficiency, supply chain management and streamlining partner onboarding.
Vendors zeroed-in on the challenges of B2B’s increasing standards complexity, growing transaction volumes and stove-piped transactions which resulted from multiple and disparate systems. To borrow Jobs’ mantra, vendors needed to innovate and transport the technology to the next level.
With webMethods Trading Networks this means the ability to support a centralized and integrated viewpoint (read: monitoring, analytics) in order to achieve complete, end-to-end visibility for document translation and transmission. It’s also very much about security, scalability – and even a portal specifically designed for partners, allowing them to manage their own profiles, including document exchange via mobile and web.
webMethods Trading Network’s journey has become further transportive with the introduction of rules-based document processing, enabling users greater opportunities to reuse processing services. Based on business requirements, services that process incoming or outgoing transactions can be shared across different document types (invoice, order, ASN). This type of reuse can simplify B2B architectures and keep total cost of ownership at a minimum.
But the larger, transportive architectural innovation is that the webMethods B2B solution is part of a completely unified connectivity platform, including Application Integration, API Management, Master Data Management (MDM) and Managed File Transfer (MFT) – not to mention Streaming and Predictive Analytics, among other capabilities. Software AG refers to these synergistic building blocks as the Digital Business Platform (DBP).
And then there’s EDI (Electronic Data Interchange), supporting any standard through webMethods eStandards; add-on modules providing value-added, business-to-business software solutions for specific industries - including manufacturing, financial services, consumer packaged goods, retail and others. This collection of modules is divided into vertical and (yes), transport adapters.
To see webMethods Trading Networks in action, please click here for a recent webMethods Wednesday webinar.
And please don’t forget to click the Zen button :).