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Implementation (Technology) Options

Factors to Consider when Choosing Implementation Options

Special Notes:  

     Basic Factors
    Discovery and Negotiation Decisions
    Business Content Decisions
    Information Exchange Timing Options
    Business Integration Decisions
    Messaging and Communications Decisions
     Cost Factors
     Project Delay Factors
Back to Basics of eBusiness Implementations

Basic Factors

Discovery and Negotiation Decisions

  • Do any of my target trading partners already have some or all of the business process implemented with some of their partners, using the same standards or guidelines?
  • Are there trading partners (other than target trading partners) who have already implemented the business process in the target standard who I could do an initial implementation with or easily add to my program?

 

Discovery and Negotiation Model portion of ICM

 

Business Content Decisions

  • How will the business process will be implemented?
    • Will the components for an entire scenario be implemented at once or will the implementation be done business process component by business process component-by-component, or will only some components of a scenario be implemented but never the entire scenario?
  • What standard or guideline is being used to specify the business process activities?
  • Will the same standard or guideline be used to specify the contents of business documents and data files?
  • For the business process to execute correctly, are there requirements for the exchange methods?  Options:
    • Batch
    • Event-Driven
    • Real-time or Interactive
  • Do the business process activities need to be synchronous(2) or asynchronous(2) or a combination?

Business Content Model portion of ICM

The business content model is used at design time to create the trading partner agreement, to specify business processes and to specify business document or data file contents, and maps for transforming data to/from a proprietary format, or to/from another standards format.

At run time, the business process specification and maps created at design time are invoked.  Data may be validated against a data dictionary to test for compliance to the standard.

Information Exchange Timing Options
  • For the business process to execute correctly, are there requirements for the exchange methods?  Options:
    • Batch
    • Event-Driven
    • Real-time or Interactive
  • Do the business process activities need to be synchronous(2) or asynchronous(2) or a combination?

 

Business Integration Decisions

  • What are the requirements of our gateway/message broker?
  • Is back-end integration planned?  Both partners or just one?
  • What about documents/processes that require data be extracted from or posted to more than one back-end application? 
  • Is a PC front-end application being used by the trading partner?
  • Is a web application being used by one partner, or a shared web application? 
    • Is it a seller-owned web site or a buyer-owned web site?
    • In whose extranet or virtual private network does the web application reside (buyer's, seller's, third party's?
  • What are the requirements for the user interface?
Business Integration Model portion of ICM

Messaging and Communications Decisions

  • Is a VAN being used by one or both partners, or an Internet connection through a VAN, or a point-to-point connection between partners?
  • What are the security requirements?  Need to consider:
    • Privacy
    • Authentication
    • Integrity
    • Non-repudiation
  • What are the requirements for enveloping files that are to be transmitted?
    • Does the standard being used for the business document or file contents have specific requirements for messaging?
  • If digital certificates are being used, is there a process in place to proactively track certificate expiration - before a transmission fails due to an expired certificate?
  • Are dynamic or static IP addresses being used and what is the impact on each partner, and potential future partners?
Messaging Portion of ICM

Communication Options

In general, there is a relationship between the communications methods and the business content standards, messaging standard and/or business integration standards.  The choice of exchange method may drive the decision to use a particular messaging and/or communication option.  The choice of communications method may dictate or limit messaging options.  Or, the data content standard chosen may dictate or limit messaging options.  Changes in the various standards are overcoming some of these types of limitations.  Additionally, just as VANs provided protocol translations for traditional EDI in the past, such services are now being provided for internet connections, so that partners can focus on business process and business content, and allow service providers to worry about the technical communications.

Communications Options include:

  • Direct, point-to-point connections between trading partners
  • Point-to-point connection via one partner's private network
  • Communications via a network service provider such as a VAN or ISP

The communications options above use one or more of these connection options include:

Whats's the difference between a "regular" telephone connection and an internet connection?

  • Telephone Network
    • Circuit switched.  The user pays to rent a circuit for a period of time, so the connection is private.  There is a single local service provider.
  • Internet (TCP/IP Network)
    • Packet switched.  The user pays to transfer packets over a circuit shared with others, so the connection is not private.  There may be multiple local service providers.

 

Cost Factors

These are things to be taken into consideration when determining what the most cost-effective implementation option may be in a given environment.

Project Delay Factors

This is based on a Pareto analysis of several actual implementation projects.  These are some things that have actually happened:

MOST FREQUENT

SOMEWHAT FREQUENT:

 LEAST FREQUENT:

Last updated 02 March 2003