• Subject: E.Supply and JBA on the Web
  • From: Dan Thomas <DThomas@xxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Thu, 9 Dec 1999 17:10:43 -0500

As reported before, we have been evaluating E.Supply.  We even set up some
accounts for various people to test this over the web.  

We have signed the contract with JBA to move forward with this project.
While the current version is not very aesthetically pleasing, it is
functional and we like the concept of a web server running on Windows NT
with Server side processes on the AS/400 (not ODBC or "screen
scraping/stuffing").  We really like the fact that it is highly integrated
and realtime.  We have seen screen cams of a new version of E.Supply which
looks better and that is what we plan on using to go live (which we hope to
do in late January, 2000).  The performance seems pretty decent.

We do have an in-house web "guru".  While this isn't a product requirement,
it sure has been helpful.  JBA's support on this has been decent.  We've
definitely found some bugs, most of which have been fixed.  Those that
follow us will have it much easier.

This product is strictly for Business-to-Business E-Commerce and that is our
focus at this time.  I'm open to questions about this product and would love
to hear from anyone else implementing any E-Commerce solution.  Anyone not
working on E-Commerce at this time is already behind as far as I'm
concerned.

We also signed a contract to implement @ctive Enterprise Workflow on a
limited basis.  We'll be using this to generate e-mail order and shipment
confirmations.  I would also love to hear any comments on this product.

We already have in production a reporting site for our major customers.
They can log on to our website and run reports for sales, inventory status,
inventory movements, A/R aging, etc.  This has been very well received.   We
wrote these ourselves using IIS Active Server pages and SQL scripts.  The
results are presented either in HTML for their browser, or can be dumped
automatically in Excel for further analysis or formatted printing.  We
originally tried to use Crystal Reports for this project.  We loved the
client presentation with Crystal, but the reports are actually produced on
the web server and it was single threaded and couldn't support multiple
users.  Web enabling standard JBA inquiries or reports wasn't a solution for
us because each customer needs to see only that section of our database that
pertains to them.  Ease of use was also a significant issue.  Each time I
mention this on the web I get responses from vendors, but so far I haven't
seen that perfect solution (but I'm sure there are other options than doing
it by "hand").

If it matters, we are running JBA V3.5.0 on an AS/400 620 (2179) with
Finance, Customer Service and Logistics (including warehousing).

Dan Thomas
Sr. VP Information Systems
Medical Distribution, Inc.
4500 Progress Blvd
Louisville, KY  40218-5058
Phone (502) 454-9013 ext 120
email  DThomas@lpw-mdi.com

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