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IBM B2B Integrator Competitors and Alternatives

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Read reviews of IBM B2B Integrator competitors and alternatives

RL
Sr. Software Engineer at a retailer with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
Top 20
Simplifies mapping and helps us reduce the babysitting of processes through automation

Pros and Cons

  • "The solution helps us automate processes, more on the insurance side. Where they used to have to babysit monthly files, because of size, they don't have to do that with SEEBURGER BIS. They just run the monthly process. Files get collected, translated, and sent to the proper systems, so the babysitting is gone."
  • "A person whom I work with, and is not very technical, found the setup complex, as there are a lot of steps."

How has it helped my organization?

My organization is on the retail side, so it has been more beneficial on the insurance side of the business because it has allowed them the freedom to do a few more things. It helped them connect to private eyewear doctors so they could upload their insurance forms. Previously, we had to babysit our old software at the end of the month to make sure that files wouldn't get blown up because of their size. Whereas, SEEBURGER BIS doesn't seem to have an issue with this, which saves us time.

The solution helps us automate processes, more on the insurance side. Where they used to have to babysit monthly files, because of size, they don't have to do that with SEEBURGER BIS. They just run the monthly process. Files get collected, translated, and sent to the proper systems, so the babysitting is gone.

It helps keep us up-to-date on regulatory requirements.

What is most valuable?

I like that you can search documents.

This solution is a little more straightforward versus my old mapper, IBM Sterling B2B Integrator. I can point, click, and link one data field to another, then it will map. With my old mapper, I had to save the data, then read all the records of the table or file before processing the conversion. So, I had to read the data pile, score all the data, and then convert. Whereas, with SEEBURGER BIS, I can just take the data and map it to a field, which is more straightforward and robust.

Data mapping is faster in SEEBURGER BIS than IBM Sterling B2B Integrator. It is easier to use the tools in SEEBURGER BIS to debug maps than it is in Sterling B2B Integrator, which has its glitches. For example, I have a special character in the data field. Data will fail when mapping this special character with Sterling, then I have to go in and fix it. Whereas, with SEEBURGER BIS, I don't have this issue.

I find it simple to do my mapping. Today, I have that it is pretty simple to set up trading partners.

What needs improvement?

The West Coast was thinking that SEEBURGER BIS would convert my maps, then they would own the process. The problem: There are times that we have to change dates or something in the map to facilitate what the business is looking to do for a partner. So, it turned out after much bellyaching on my part that this couldn't be done. So, I don't know if we can have a cloud solution and still own the maps. I think they are going towards that direction. We are looking to possibly have them host the server, but then the fees will go up.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using it for slightly over a year. I had some informal/formal training on SEEBURGER BIS.

Our team in California has been using it for three to four years. 

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

I don't think since I have been involved with SEEBURGER BIS that it has been down. We do have a backup. So, if one server goes down, then it kicks over.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

On the technical side, there are five or six users.

We have plans to increase usage of SEEBURGER BIS in the future. The retail side of the business is open to utilizing the solution more. Also, as the insurance business grows, they will definitely be using it.

How are customer service and technical support?

The technical support is excellent. I reach out to the service desk in Germany and normally get a reply within a day. They are able to get to the root cause of an issue and resolve it. 

I have a consultant in Phoenix, Arizona, who is assigned to our account, and it's usually within the day I get an answer from them.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

Right now, we use IBM Sterling B2B Integrator as our EDI platform and are converting over to SEEBURGER BIS. The California team has probably done 85 percent of their conversions. So, they are pretty much up and running. At this point, I have converted roughly 95 of my maps over to SEEBURGER BIS, but none are in production. COVID-19 took a big hit on us, which kind of slowed us down.

We were also using Connect Enterprise, which is another IBM product. Connect Enterprise had reached the end of its life and IBM was no longer supporting it. In addition, it seemed like Connect Enterprise didn't have the capability to handle the file sizes that the insurance side of the business was pushing through.

We switched to SEEBURGER BIS because we want an all-in-one solution for multiple products.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was straightforward. A person whom I work with, and is not very technical, found the setup complex, as there are a lot of steps. I put down the steps for her, and she was like, "Oh yeah, this is pretty easy". You just got to follow the guidelines.

I have converted 95 maps. I probably have another 100 to 200 more to go. I use the mapping tool every day. 

What about the implementation team?

We had someone from SEEBURGER come out and show us the mapper in November and February. 

SEEBURGER came in to install it. There were probably three or four people involved from the SEEBURGER side along with two people from our California team.

Today, the California team is going to show me how to install a new AS2 certificate.

What was our ROI?

This is less babysitting. In the amount of downtime, we are probably saving money, which is a big thing.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

They need to be more competitively priced. When it comes to training, they need to lower their prices. It shouldn't be so specific. Maybe they should outsource training to another company. From what I can see, their training is pretty expensive, and they don't do anything for free. I don't expect it for free. However, if I have a quick question, and it takes five minutes to answer then don't charge me 30 minutes. Instead, let it go until you have 15 minutes worth of questions from me before you charge me the 30 minutes.

It is a bit expensive. When I was looking at the product 12 years ago, they were talking about $500,000 for the product. 

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

When they decided not to move forward with anything to replace IBM Connect Enterprise, I looked for solutions that would benefit our eyewear side of the business. We wanted to go with the version of SEEBURGER BIS that runs on SAP PO, but we were overruled. The organization purchased SEEBURGER BIS and wanted us to use that version too.

What other advice do I have?

I have always liked the product. I looked at the SEEBURGER BIS product almost 12 years ago. However, because of the price, it was shot down.

Understand the cost factor. Have someone from SEEBURGER help you, though this will add to your costs. 

It is fairly simple to pick up as you start using it. Definitely have SEEBURGER train you, if you are not already familiar with the product.

The mapping is easy, but it still takes time to learn.

Because of COVID-19 and the impact on the businesses worldwide, some monies from our budget have been cut. However, I think we are looking to go to 6.7 either the first or second quarter of next year. On the insurance side, with 6.7, they can do a few more things a bit easier because of some of the APIs that can be incorporated. I also think that the footprint of the software is smaller. Less storage is less money that we need to spend on storage. We are also looking at the possibility of having the solution stored on a cloud. We haven't gotten that deep into discussions yet.

Sitting around with SEEBURGER at a seminar in December and discussing their project plan for the future, I think this product is the way to go.

I would rate it an eight out of 10. I will probably go up further with my rating as I learn more of its capabilities.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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