Aurora EDI Alliance Press ~ Volume 3 Issue 2 ~ June 27, 2014

Welcome Note

Welcome to the summer newsletter of 2014. In case this is your first newsletter, if you'd like to read previous issues, you can find them on our website here.  The Aurora EDI Alliance Press is a quarterly newsletter dedicated to current issues, events, education and newsworthy items surrounding both EDI technology and the Aurora EDI Alliance. We would welcome any feedback from our readers on how to improve it.  The Aurora EDI Alliance is a tightly knit group of U.S. companies and specializing in the implementation and maintenance of Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) in a variety of industries.  We are recognized experts in EDI, and can provide consulting, system analysis, design, development and training services as well as software implementation services.

Now Selling Liaison Exchange Network (Formerly nuBridges) VAN Services

We have purchased a healthy block of KCs (kilo characters) on the Liaison Exchange Network (formerly nuBridges) at a very good rate.  We are passing that savings on to you, our clients!  The Liaison Exchange Network is a reliable VAN that boasts 99.99% uptime.  Liaison utilizes best practice encryption standards so that your files are transferred with end-to-end security throughout the data flow.  Enjoy better visibility to your data with comprehensive document/order tracking and reporting, including visibility into item-level detail.  If you are interested in taking advantage of our good fortune, please call 800-404-9182 ext. 25 to get a quote.

Customer Spotlight

Our customer spotlight this time is Allied Brass, who for more than 50 years has been providing affordable decorative bath hardware for customers who want style and durability.  Located in Louisa, VA, Allied Brass offers 28 finishes for their products, everything from Antique Copper to Satin Nickel.  Because they manufacture their own products, they also offer custom work by skilled artisans with years of industry experience.  You can find their products at fine hardware stores and boutiques across the US and online at ATGStores.com.  For more information, visit their website at www.alliedbrass.com and feel free to follow them on Twitter.    

Who is the Aurora EDI Alliance?

For the next few newsletters, we will be doing short bios on each member of the Alliance.  For this one, we are featuring Roger Curtis, President and CEO of Sitcur.

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Roger Curtis, founding member of the Aurora EDI Alliance, is the President and CEO of Sitcur, an EDI services and solutions company based in Los Angeles, CA. Roger is adored around the world by his customers and colleagues alike due to his incredible likeability and all around willingness to jump in when needed. Sitcur, founded in 1986, has the tag line, "e-business solutions with integrity." Anyone who has worked with Roger would say this is accurate. He makes a big effort to understand his customers’ business needs and to produce reliable software solutions so they can focus on sales and good customer service. Sitcur's clients always feel taken care of and are confident that their issues will be addressed and resolved quickly and reliably.

Roger started working in the technology industry in 1977.  In the early 80s, he was programming Basic language minicomputers such as the Data General NOVA.  Clearly ahead of his time, he also wrote and sold a program that allowed users to create messages with a word processor and integrate it with the Western Union Telex network, which was used to send domestic and internal messages in a time of pre-email.  This evolved into establishing an authorized dealership that sold Telex accounts.  After AT&T acquired Western Union, the technology evolved into FAX, then email, which eventually led to the birth of Value-Added-Networks (VANs).  The late 1980s found Roger, along with many others, getting his feet wet with electronic data interchange (EDI).  He got involved with some software to send EDI data to Walmart.  Later he became a reseller for Softshare (now Liaison Technologies) and that relationship is still going strong. 

Having lived most of his life in Los Angeles, where the weather is nice year-round, it's not surprising that Roger is very active.  He cycles about 20 to 30 miles every weekend and likes to mix up his route.  Each year he participates in the American Diabetes Association's Tour de Cure bike ride in Long Beach, CA, and even earned an award for fundraising this last year.  He also loves the outdoors so on a Sunday afternoon, you might find him working in his native garden.   Roger loves Los Angeles and boasted to me about the cultural and art-based activities available there, not to mention the fabulous restaurants.  When he is not helping his clients, or biking around LA, he volunteers his time doing practice interviews for UCLA students to help them prepare for life after college.  When asked how he wants to be remembered, he says, "For making a difference in this world and for helping others.  I'm pretty fortunate."

Easy Trade CVS Transaction Fees Increasing

CVS has recently requested new modifications to the Easy Trade service so in order to keep offering this low cost service it has become to necessary to raise the per transaction fees.  Effective June 16, 2014, the CVS transaction fees will be increased from $.20 to $.25.  We make every effort to keep Easy Trade as the low cost solution that our clients depend on, which is why it has been four years since we have increased our prices.  The increase will apply to all documents except for the 824, 852 and 997.  We do not charge for the 824 or the 997.  The price for the 852 will remain the same.  Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions.  

Blog Highlight:  A CEO's Guide to Supplier Enablement

You've been doing EDI for years.  You've got a phenomenal software package (extra points if it's Liaison's Delta/ECS).  Your top 30%, 40%, even 50% of your supply chain is connected through EDI document exchanges.  You have eliminated most manual processes.  And through the use of EDI, you have built strong trading partner relationships.  Yet, you have tens or even hundreds of suppliers who are still receiving orders from you either via email or even FAX.  At some point your business stopped pursuing EDI deeper into the supply chain. Common reasons cited include costs to the supplier to become EDI capable, internal costs to setup and manage a new EDI trading partner, effort is required to educate and convince the suppliers to adopt EDI, and finally, there are more pressing projects needing focus and attention.  But as your company...read more.

Aurora EDI Alliance Heading to Santa Barbara

We are very excited to be attending Liaion's Reseller Converge 2014 in Santa Barbara this September. It IS a business trip but when you're in Santa Barbara, it doesn't feel like business - particularly when it's still 110 degrees in Arizona where one of the Aurora team resides!  We are a close-knit reseller community but spread out all over the country so it's truly wonderful to get together and catch up when we have the opportunity.  This event will revolve around the future of Liaison's products, utilizing APIs for Delta/ECS and working together to solve client challenges.  And I'm quite sure there will be good wine and delicious food involved.  We are looking forward to seeing our fellow resellers at this worthwhile event!  

Technical Terminology Time

Data Element - A data element is the basic unit of measurement that is specific to an EDI standard.  A purchase order for example, has its own standard to adhere to so the data elements must follow those rules.  Data elements are the parts that make up what's known as data segments in an EDI document, and the data segments are combined in an EDI envelope.  Data elements can be either fixed-length or variable length in terms of number of characters.  When looking at raw EDI data, the data elements are marked by separators that are placed before and after each element.   

Summer Fun Facts

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- The month of July was named after Julius Caesar, by Marc Antony.
- Ice pops were actually a happy accident, invented by an 11 year old boy named Frank Epperson in 1905.  
- Mosquitoes have been a summertime pest for an estimated 30 million years!
- About 32% of American homes have a swimming pool.  Please watch your children around water!