Profiles in EDI Integration, Dynamics GP EDI, Dynamics ERP Integration, Food and Beverage

From Dennis Bruce of Data Masons: Serving parlors, C-stores, schools and colleges in 28 states at over 26,000 locations, this Microsoft Dynamics GP 9 customer depends on its large trading partner network to support its growing business. Supplying many of the top 5 leading food service providers, the customer found that to conduct business with these partners they would have to go through iTradeNetwork. Given iTrade’s key role in handling communications within the food services industry, the customer not only needed to implement an integrated EDI solution that met partner mandates, but also one that could get them up and running with iTrade starting day one.

Working with their Microsoft Dynamics reselling partner, the customer launched its search to find an EDI solution provider with a solution that would accommodate their EDI requirements, and do so with little to no customizations to the Dynamics GP 9 platform. Until now, the customer was not required to run EDI and so it was important that the company’s solution-of-choice be one that was cost-effective and quick to implement. And with no Microsoft Dynamics GP upgrade on the horizon, they wanted to work with an ISV provider that would continue to support their ERP version, even when Microsoft no longer supports it.

Given the VARs previous experience working with Data Masons and the Vantage Point EDI solution for Microsoft Dynamics GP, they recommended the customer evaluate Data Masons’ EDI Made Simple® approach. The customer quickly narrowed the pool of solutions down to Data Masons after learning about the company’s unique EDI technology and ability to be up and running immediately with iTrade’s maps.

Data Masons was able to serve up a double-scoop to the customer: an EDI solution that did not require any customizations to the ERP and one that mapped quickly to iTradeNetwork. Throw a few sprinkles on top – no challenges during install, ability to easily implement with new trading partners as required and confidence to scale to meet business needs - and the customer found a perfect flavor combination of integrated EDI and Microsoft Dynamics GP.

Dynamics AX EDI, Profiles in EDI Integration, Dynamics ERP Integration, Food and Beverage

This week Consumer Goods Technology published a piece on Peet’s Coffee & Tea's challenge to maintain both excellent quality and fast growth with its business management technology prior to implementing Microsoft Dynamics AX. Setting off on the process to select a new ERP platform, Peet’s established its goals: simplify IT administration, give business decision-makers reliable, current information and streamline reporting and compliance. With these goals in–hand and help from Microsoft Gold Certified Partner Junction Solutions, Peet’s chose Microsoft Dynamics AX to manage their needs within the food and beverage industry.

Dynamics AX EDI, Profiles in EDI Integration, Dynamics ERP Integration, Food and Beverage

Peet’s Coffee & Tea, Inc. (PEET) is the premier specialty coffee and tea company in the U.S., and Microsoft Dynamics AX 4 client, that was recently recognized by Microsoft with a 2011 Microsoft Dynamics Customer Excellence Award for excellence in Evangelism.

With Peet’s selling through a vast network of retail outlets, EDI is a critical part of their business operations to ensure accuracy, timeliness and traceability when dealing with their trading partners, ranging from large retailers such as Target to smaller retail stores. Peet’s relied on their partner with food & beverage industry expertise to find an easy-to-implement replacement solution to meet their Dynamics AX EDI requirements, as after 18 months of trying to implement another EDI solution, they were at a standstill.

Specifically, Peet’s initial EDI solution could not meet the EDI specifications required by Target, putting the company in an undesirable position with one of its largest retailers. Another one of Peet’s significant challenges was that after the shipment left, the shipping manger had to manually enter each package thru a Web portal. And with one shipment potentially having hundreds of cartons, the shipping manger was under the gun to get the shipments logged into the portal. The biggest problem was time constraints; the shipping manger was given a certain amount of time to get the data entered or else the system would log off the user and the user would have to start the process over again.

To resolve these issue, Peet’s requested the help of their Microsoft reselling partner who immediately engaged Data Masons’ EDI, ERP and retail industry expertise to bring about swift resolution to Peet’s EDI integration challenges. Given the critical circumstances related to Target, Peet’s requested to undergo a pilot program to get Target quickly up to speed. Once onsite Data Masons had a working document with Target deployed and tested in a matter of 3 days – not the weeks, or even months, typical of other EDI solution providers. Peet’s was also able to utilize and print the VICS BOL in Vantage Point EDI, eliminating the challenging time constraints of the previously manual processes.

Data Masons’ Vantage Point EDI solution is an ideal fit for Peet’s, as well as for other companies that do business with major retailers, as it enables unlimited transaction processing without additional document and transaction fees. Built on three key Microsoft technology components - .NET, SQL and XML – Vantage Point EDI can traverse large record sets with lightning speed, making it an enterprise-class solution for companies like Peet’s that process a high volume of EDI transactions per month.

Peet’s saw immediate results with Data Masons, resolving their 18-month integration challenge with a previous EDI solution, and gained long-term confidence that they can quickly onboard new trading partners as their network continues to grow.