Less than two months. That's how long it took Riviana Foods to train its staff, implement LANSA UCCnet Direct, and publish most of its Global Trading Item Numbers (GTINs) with one retailer. Less than two weeks later, Riviana had published to a second retailer and nearly completed publishing to a third.
Based in Houston, Texas, Riviana Foods Inc. is one of the largest processors, marketers and distributors of branded and private-label rice products in the United States. Principal brands include Mahatma®, Carolina® and Success®. The Company has additional food operations in Central America and Europe. When the company saw that more and more of its customers were signing up to join the global data synchronization movement, it realized that change was afoot. What it didn't know was how UCCnet's GLOBALregistry‰ could benefit a small company like Riviana.
"We were being encouraged to join UCCnet, but we were a bit confused by all we were seeing in the UCCnet movement," said Mike Wessing, IT director at Riviana. "We were aware of some of the problems with using unsynchronized data, so we talked to many of UCCnet's Alliance Partners to learn more about global data synchronization and what we would need to do to get on board and how it might affect us. However, many of the partners couldn't answer our questions, and our desperation increased until we talked with LANSA. They seemed to know more of what needed to be done as well as how to do it. Our confidence level immediately went up because LANSA's UCCnet Direct solution was developed using the IBM eServer iSeries platform, which we knew we could support."
Wessing said the company was also impressed by LANSA's history as an iSeries tool vendor. "We thought we may be able to do some in-house development with their tool set if we went with a LANSA solution."
Riviana uses two iSeries boxes to run its business operations. The iSeries production box runs LANSA UCCnet Direct; the second manages all communications and acts as a firewall as it is open to the Internet.
"LANSA led our staff training at the end of August and held our hand while we began the implementation cycle. In mid-September, we began to work on our own. On October 3, all of the products sold to our first UCCnet retailer had been published and accepted. By October 14, we had successfully published to a second retailer and nearly completed publishing with a third. LANSA UCCnet Direct is a solution that we will use more than once," said Wessing.
Alan Christensen, LANSA's vice president, solution products, said, "LANSA UCCnet Direct leverages existing PRISM Item Master information that comprises the majority of the synchronization payload with Riviana's retailers such as Wal-Mart and Wegmans. Within the UCCnet movement, many people talk about data cleansing and the need to replicate core production information simply to suffice UCCnet item data synchronization. Riviana, as with most suppliers, already uses their ERP data in outward-facing business transactions, which required minimal effort to review for UCCnet use. 'Why replicate when you can integrate?' is the phrase the best describes LANSA's UCCnet implementation strategy."
LANSA is a software company that helps customers enhance their business performance through the effective use of leading-edge technologies, services and solutions. LANSA's products provide offerings in the areas of application development, e-business solutions, technology integration and data access. LANSA has evolved into a powerful family of products and solutions that support IBM iSeries, AS/400, Windows, UNIX and Linux platforms. Founded in 1987, LANSA has over 6,700 installations in more than 67 countries including e-business solutions for world-leading companies like Visa, General Electric Appliances, Hershey Foods, and Dean Foods. For more information visit www.lansa.com.