EXTOL International, Inc., a leading provider of integration software for both internal and external applications, has announced that the Citizen Watch Company has selected Extol to manage its large volume of EDI transactions and related processes. Citizen is the market-share leader in the mid-priced watch category in North America.
Citizen exchanges a large number of electronic transactions with 30 sizable trading partners using 21 different transaction types. This is all handled by just one person who is responsible for managing the company's EDI-related processes. The job includes deploying and maintaining integration with internal business applications and high-visibility reporting.
Citizen uses Extol to make business information visible throughout the organization. Staff members in the warehouse, order, credit, and finance departments can simply press a designated function key to access order, shipment, and payment information. Dozens of people use this information to improve the functioning of their departments and, ultimately, enhance the customers' and partners' expericnes with the company.
"As the only EDI person, I rely on Extol's products to perform flawlessly. They enable me to rapidly respond to the demands of internal departments and external customers and partners," says Amapola Yeung, e-commerce manager for the Citizen Watch Company.
Commenting on the end users who access EDI transaction data, Yeung explained, "All they have to do is type in the purchase order number, and they get all sorts of relevant information. A non-EDI person can look at an English version that lists details about the order, including quantities and shipping information."
Also important to Citizen is the capability to eliminate custom code in application interfaces and when provisioning new trading partners. This capability, which is provided through the Extol solution, results in both higher efficiency and greater accuracy.
"For Citizen Watch, EDI is not just a customer-facing activity. Extol's EDI solution supports a wide range of information needs throughout the Citizen organization," says Steve Rosen, Extol vice president of Marketing. "This has led to improved customer relationships built on accurate, timely answers to current status queries. The integration has resulted in rapid resolution of disputed transactions, fully informed service and sales teams, as well as accurate shipping and billing information to those departments," says Rosen.
Citizen's trading partners include well-known retailers such as Macy's, JC Penney, Kohl's, Sears, Finlay Jewelers, Zales Diamond Store, Sears Canada, Hudson Bay, and Zellers in Canada. They also supply to all U.S. military exchanges such as AAFES and NEXCOM, and manufacture branded products for the Disney Merchandise Group.
The Extol solution is running on Citizen's System i550. It automatically integrates with the company's home-grown ERP and warehouse management system, both written in COBOL.
EXTOL International, Inc. is a leading provider of B2B and internal integration software. Extol solutions deliver ready-to-use services that target multiple B2B and internal challenges empowering existing IT teams to respond rapidly to new business opportunities and demands. Extol solutions are also available preconfigured to address specific electronic commerce applications including EDI, AS2, Web services integration, global data synchronization, and the integration and management capabilities required to take full advantage of supply chain functionality. For more information, visit http://www.extol.com/.