Navision - EDI integration

Are there any experiences out there regarding the receiving and processing of EDI messages in Navision?? “The sky is the limit” in Navision, but I’m looking for some proven examples, experiences, specific info or other feedback on how to deal with this integration. Thanks in advance! Sander Crousen CPIM Navision Consultant

We have developed an EDI-module in Navision. This module can be used together with EDI software (EDI-TIE etc.). It is also possible to use it for interchange sales/purchase orders between two companies in one Navision database. Foqus-ICT

We’ve worked with adidas on “correcting” their EDI/Navision integration project. It is possible to do the integration many ways… and many of them are wrong. In adidas’ case, a solution that worked OK at low volume was a big problem when scaled. For most companies, the time from the start of the project to the time they get their first live/online EDI order is much longer than they expect. Realisitic expectations up front help. Jim Hollcraft aka Skater Unauthorized Navision News Link Edited by - Jim Hollcraft on 6/5/00 9:50:02 PM

hello, to make live easier, we have developed an interface between an existing solution on EDI and the navision financial modules. So all the EDI translation, receiving and mailbox issues is done by the existing software. the translated record(s) are processed via temp tables and codeunits into and out navision. if you want more info

FYI…Navision’s release of the Commerce Gateway product which is built on the Microsoft BizTalk framework will make the integration / communication with other systems, which is what EDI is all about, a reality. In the past EDI has alway been difficult to work with because of the continual changes that occur with vendors always wanting to add more information or simply change formats. Commerce Gateway will make these non-issues. Actually, Microsoft has been using the Navision Commerce Gateway for demoing the BizTalk framework at all the Fusion 2000 conferences. Navision has made the commitment to have this product available within 30 days of Microsoft releasing their BizTalk server. The ETA for this mid-January…so get ready!

Muzzy, I fully second what you are writing. Here (in Switzerland) it looks like XML will replace EDI very very soon. XML has some very important advantages over EDI: 1.) For a given customer one EDI interface has to be developed for each and every customer/vendor (a 1:1 relationship). While with BizTalk the interface will be standardized, granting a n:n relationship: ONE interface - all customer / vendors 2.) EDI requires a dedicated EDI-Server and phone-dial-up while BizTalk/XML works via Internet and is therefore much cheaper. Marcus Marcus Fabian phone: +41 79 4397872

Today, almost 5 months after my last post (and having seen NF 3.0 Beta and User Portal) I have to admit that my statement from december 2000 was completely wrong!! In fact I was relying on sales-information (official statements from Microsoft and BizTalk) and reality prooved that their promises were (as usual ) wrong! Fact is that 1) BizTalk Interfaces are not yet as much standardized as EDI interfaces. For example: Every company defines their own layout how a sales-order should look like. Even if Navision is standardizing their interface for “sales orders”, this interface is not compatible with the interface SAGE or JDEdwards might have defined as “standard for sales-orders”. Therefore even though interfaces between Navision customers/vendors should be compatible, interfaces have to be written whenever software packages from different vendors are concerned. There are however AFAIK three exceptions of this rule. Three file-types where a worldwide software-vendor independend standard was found by the industry:

  • stock quotes
  • mathematical formulas
  • chemical formulas
  1. BizTalk also requires a server. The price of this server is very high, currently (about EURO/US$ 7000 for a 5-user license). After all it has to be said that currently EDI and BizTalk are the same expensive. — Anyway. I still believe that in longer terms BizTalk will be better standardized, will become cheaper and will in long terms be able to replace EDI. After all, Internet connections have the better future than point-to-point connections in my eyes. From internal sources I know that the BizTalk standard for chemical formulas only could be established because the three world’s largest chemical companies joined forced to develop a common standard which luckily enough was accepted by all the other chemical companies. We can only have the hope that the software-producers of ERP packages also find a common agreement on how a XML file should look like. ------- With best regards from Switzerland Marcus Fabian Edited by - fabian on 2001 May 03 01:58:10

Why not just setup Navision (or anything else for that matter) to handle the raw EDI files and then skip the fancy transmission software and just use normal email instead. The standards are already defined and in general are the same throughout an industry so many companies only have to deal with one version anyway. Cheers John

Great idea! Let’s even go one step further: Why not translating the EDI data structure (= the field definitions) into XML and use the greater flexibility of XML? ------- With best regards from Switzerland Marcus Fabian