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Adeona PIM 2017

We are currently developing a next generation Adeona PIM system, and while the foundation will be familiar, many things will be changing. Over the years we have learned a lot from PIM in general as well as from our clients, and we are using these insights in the development of a new product version.

Adedona PIM 2017 – highlights:

1. Architecture

The architecture has been updated to match growing needs and to adapt to different environments in the best ways possible. It’s scalable and supports larger amounts of data, and is available for deployment both as a cloud based service as well as on-premise/private cloud service.

 2. Information model

The information model of Adeona has been updated, and while most of the features remain the same, we are introducing some new ones as well. Based on the customer feedback, we have developed upgraded features and information models that support business needs better. Related workshops still continue.

 3. REST API

Everything works via a single interface, and the REST API is available for both internal system use as well as for external systems and developers. All the data within the system is available via uniform interface, which will help with e.g., integration and building data-driven applications.

4. Searchability

Search functionality and finding relevant information are key features in systems with a lot of data, and this is one thing we have really focused on. All the information saved in the system can be fetches swiftly and easily by using the Elasticsearch search engine which indexes all the information in real time. For example, a web store can use the PIM system as a search engine, streamlining the whole project.

5. User interface and usability

All admin access is web browser based, and the new user interface is fast and straightforward. The powerful search feature is used in many ways, and managing especially large amounts of data was taken into consideration during the planning of the user interface.

We are developing the product together with our clients, and the workshops related to the new version were held in March. We gathered together with our clients to go through some key uses of the system, and got familiar with the user interface and the functionalities.

Workshops will continue in the fall, so feel free to join us!

Rajapinnat REST API

About API’s and their publicness

A modern application lives or dies based on the availability of its public API. Before having a deeper look into what API’s mean to us, and how they can be used in the most effective way, we should understand the basics.

API (Application Programming Interface) is an interface that allows the application data and functionality to be reached, as well as allowing for further programming of the program or a part of it, for example in regards to standard libraries. These interfaces can function on a very low level and deal with the inner functions of the application itself, for example calling open source libraries within the system. However this article only covers public API’s that are expandable or can be integrated and allow for the application data to be used in a variety of different ways.

API-centric architecture

Traditionally API’s have been considered to be an internal part of the application, or at the very least to be used as a means to integrate something to the application. Modern applications act as services, and this is why it’s important to make sure that expanding the system is just as easy as is the use of the data included in it. Modern applications use and offer a multitude of interfaces, for example social media applications like Facebook and LinkedIn are mainly run on interfaces with separate user interfaces built on top of them (e.g., browser, mobile, etc.).

In an API-centric architecture the applications connect to each other over these interfaces. How a single application has been built doesn’t matter as long as it follows the general practices in its interfaces. API-centric architecture also makes it easier to create device independent applications, so that for example the application can be run on multiple mobile operating systems using the same interface on them all.

 

Adeona_PIM_2017

RESTful API

Using general practices and de facto standards when connecting applications and using the data via different applications makes the whole process easy.

REST (Representational state transfer) is an stateless interface architecture model based on HTTP protocol. Typically REST API offers the information in JSON (JavaScript Object Notation) or in XML format. Our REST API’s use JSON, which is an open format based on readable text and attribute value pairs.

Public API

One of the main ideas of an API-centric architecture in that the interfaces are publicly available and that they contain a comprehensive documentation. Even a good interface will go unused if it’s hard to use or lacks documentation completely. In the best case scenario all the information and logic of the application can be reached via the API. This makes it flexible to connect, integrate and expand the system with needed applications.

Public API doesn’t however mean that all the information within the system would be publicly available. API calls are always authenticated so that the user will only have access to information they have credentials for.

More information:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Application_programming_interface
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Representational_state_transfer

 

PIM has to be easy

At Canter we work each day to make product information management (PIM) as easy as possible. As with everything else, those who manage to make complex things easy will prevail, and this is also the case with product information management.

Although it’s not complex in the first place.

Or at least we don’t think it has to be, and following few principles will go long way. While company and industry specific differences do exist, the basic principle will always be the same.

PIM is not an IT project.

It is the implementation of new mode of operation that includes both change management and automation of manual processes. PIM system does not do everything automatically, but instead operates as enabler. In order to make product information management for our clients as easy as possible, we have focused especially on the following and been actively developing them.

Easy acquisition

We think that acquiring IT system should not be a complex task. Pricing models based on the amount of users or transactions direct the decision making incorrectly, and instead we think that it is more important to find out how to make most out of the usage and processes. The more our clients use the PIM system and the data it provides, the better are the benefits they can get out of it.

Easy acquisition also depends on:

  • the length of the contract – we believe in the added value we provide, not in long contracts
  • the possibility of starting with just simple specifications
  • what sort of training is included
  • how the client is supported with change management
  • the update guarantee

Easy deployment

Easy deployment of a system leads into powerful use. When the basis is solid, it is also easier to do change management.

Easy deployment means many things:

  • how well the specification workshops are managed and prepared
  • clear practices and industry-specific productization
  • ease of installation and parameterization of the system
  • functioning Application Program Interfaces (APIs) facilitate the integration
  • best practices and connectors to the most common systems

Easy usage

Easy-to-use user interface motivates the users to handle the upkeep of product information and benefit from the data.

Good user experience is the sum of its part, and listed are just few key points:

  • logical, reliable user interface
  • search functions that work faster than a though
  • smart recommendations
  • mass editing, importing and exporting; especially useful when dealing with large amount of products

Easy integration

Seldom does a PIM system operate alone, and usually it’s a part of at least one other system. It is very common to have it integrated with many other systems, for example with ERP or a webstore.

System integration needs to be easy, so well documented and standardized API makes it easier and faster for everyone. This allows the data to be exchanged between multiple systems without massive integration projects.

 Easy expansion and usage of data

We want to help our clients to benefit from their product information more effectively. When PIM interfaces are functional and open, it’s easy to build data-based applications with the help of product information. This allows for our clients to work with those they see fit themselves.

Could we help you to make your product information management easy as well? Contact us! 

 

Digital transformation: All hands on deck!

sailing_boat__blog_canter

The stiff breeze of digital transformation becomes a formidable storm. For a good ship with an excellent team a unique opportunity to reach the finish line in front of the competition. Similar to the wheat races of the 19th and 20th centuries, when the largest sailing ships were racing under extreme weather conditions, this applies to all companies today: Digital transformation is both an opportunity but also a risk for the company. This applies in particular to product communication. In the future, product data and processes will be the focus not “creative” advertising messages. Therefore the design and maintenance of the “golden data” set must be a high priority.

 

line1_canter

 

The number of channels and touchpoints in different contexts for new markets is growing steadily. There is an obvious need to edit data only once and to use this on-demand in the most diverse contexts. In addition to the technical infrastructure of PIM systems such as Canter’s Adeona , the process change is of fundamental importance.  All available resources must be directed towards the “golden data” set and the effort to  enrich solely for the channel and the creation of the  touchpoint presentation must be minimized as far as possible. All the men on deck must work and on it. However, there remains only one  team for all other activities. This change applies in particular to the print channel. Traditionally, a great deal of effort is being made to adapt and create data for the print channel but the production of print publications is often still done manually. Using these resources efficiently for all channels and touchpoints is a key factor in the return on investment of PIM projects. This, however, inevitably means there is a need for higher automation of the print channel because resources for manual activities are now missing. The priint:suite, with its unique automation and productivity functions, not only offers the opportunity to save time and money, but also creates space for better data and thus also for more creativity.

In the print channel hitting the wind at speed leads to successful communication.

-Horst Huber

Horst Huber is a pioneer in the field of system-driven publishing. His extensive expertise – spanning cross-channel marketing, process optimisation, database publishing/Web-to-Print, benchmarketing and potential analysis – is drawn from over 20 years of project experience in retail, mail order and industrial enterprises. He is also founder and CEO of the WERK II. 

Horst Huber’s blog

 

Helvar polishes product information management processes with Adeona PIM

Specialised in energy-efficient solutions for the global market, Helvar will centralise its product information management with the Adeona PIM solution.

The lighting technology company publishes product information on its website, in printed product catalogues and in brochures, price lists and Excel spreadsheets targeting various resellers and market segments.

In the past, the company’s product information was scattered across different systems: on the website, in printed catalogues and in local area network shares. The major challenge has been managing the different language versions, which, with the eight languages to maintain, is not a surprise. Although the majority of the content is the same regardless of the language, it still needs to be updated separately for online publishing and for the printed catalogue. In addition, images and other documents had to be copied to the website and also to a separate media bank service.

The new media bank was published in April. Now the images and documents are automatically updated by Adeona PIM and the changes are reflected both on the website and in the media bank. In addition, automation can make industrious steps easier, such as updating product information in price lists and product catalogues with finished layout.

Are you interested? For more information about our PIM solutions, please contact:

Manager, Customer relations
Katri Koskentalo
katri.koskentalo@canter.fi
+358 40 167 8971

 

Helvar is an international lighting technology company specialising in energy efficient components and solutions for lighting and lighting control systems. We aim to bring continuously more intelligent, easy-to-use, reliable lighting solutions for the different needs in the marketplace. Strong growth in LED and lighting controls will continue with a growing emphasis on the opportunities digitalisation will provide, the internet of things (IoT), human centric lighting and energy efficiency being key elements in the future of lighting.www.helvar.fi 

Canter provides their clients with Adeona product data management solutions. With Adeona, it is possible to save all the information centrally in order to update and share them faster. Getting your product to the market becomes faster, and the results can be seen in the increase of customer satisfaction. You can read more about the company at:http://www.canter.fi/en/company/

 

Orient Occident has chosen Canter for their product information management partner

Orient Occident and Canter have started a collaboration.

 

”Creating price catalogs has been challenging for us. With the Adeona Sales Tool we are able to crate the catalogs automatically, with an uniform look. By doing this, we are able to dedicate more time for our clients and into closing sales.”

Managing Director Mikko Puputti

Other advantages of using the centralized Adeona-PIM solution in the first place were e.g., being able to swiftly create stunning offers with photos. In addition, photos and other enriching product information can also be added to the ERP system. There are also plans to expand the usage of Adeona in the future.

Are you interested? For more information about our PIM solutions, please contact:
Janne Costiander
050 552 1054
janne.costiander@canter.fi

 

Orient Occident is a local family business.  The company imports interior textiles, floor coverings and carpets. The high quality interior design products and services are marketed for producers, retailers and other influential bodies and decision-makers in industry. www.orientoccident.fi.

Canter provides their clients with Adeona product data management solutions. With Adeona, it is possible to save all the information centrally in order to update and share them faster. Getting your product to the market becomes faster, and the results can be seen in the increase of customer satisfaction. You can read more about the company at:http://www.canter.fi/en/company/

Canter is participating in Digia Enterprise Day 2015

Canter is again visible part of  Digia Enterprise day in Restaurant Maxine on Thursday 12th of November 2015.  There is interesting customer presentations and the opportunity to explore the variety of business-building solutions in program.

More information 

Welcome to visit and discuss about product information management solutions to our stand!