Business Integration

Taming TCO in the financial services industry

stairsFile transfer is more than a given at the average financial institution. The Financial Services Industry (FSI) thrives on information and devours it. In one day you might send and receive files in and out of the office, down the street and across the globe, and back and forth with agents, clients, brokers and more.

Combined with the amount of data flying around—the need for an efficient file transfer solution seems pretty clear. A solution needs to protect sensitive data while keeping a lid on costs. Unfortunately, legacy systems do neither. Weighed down by disparate FTP and script tools, and a lack of visibility and secure protocols, these systems become an endless road to nowhere once their last friend in IT retires.

A single, modern file transfer solution can resolve these problems. Modernization and consolidation go a long way towards improving security, and centralizing management and data transmission governance. They can also substantially reduce total cost of ownership (TCO). Factor in the costs of multiple toolsets, software licenses and maintenance agreements and the savings can quickly add up.

Visit our FSI Solution Center now to learn how a major insurance company modernized, consolidated and cut costs with SEEBURGER Managed File Transfer (MFT).

SAPinsider article sheds light on supply chain troubleshooting

lost expressionThings like locating a customer order or figuring out why it didn’t ship in an ERP or SAP system can be, well, pretty much a mess. It can take hours to answer simple questions, concerning customers, stalling supply chains, and costing a bundle in labor costs and missed SLA deadline penalties. A little Q&A will illustrate this a bit more.

Q. Can’t I just rely on my ERP system?

A. The reality is you can’t. In fact it’s estimated that IT and ERP staff likely spend as much as half their time troubleshooting B2B processing problems.

Q. Why do ERP systems cause problems?

A. They lack central B2B process visibility and store messages separately from business documents. Even SAP systems can store documents in up to 10 different applications.

Q. What are the real world consequences?

A. It can take hours to research problems, increase overhead, damage your customer relationships, cause you to miss SLA deadlines and create production outages.

Q. So what’s the solution?

A. You need to find a way to speed up the troubleshooting process and make it possible for non-technical users to resolve problems as well. A proper SAP add-on can do this.

As a longtime SAP business integration partner, SEEBURGER’s Monitor for SAP comes as an integrated, preconfigured add-on that provides centralized visibility into B2B processes. It’s easy to use even for the non-technical user, as it’s displayed next to your SAP screen and features the SAP interface you’re used to.

Read the SAPinsider article today, and make supply chain monitoring working for you—not against you.

Online security in the financial services sector is a risky business

Imagine hundreds of billions of dollars vanishing right before your eyes. Well that’s exactly what happened yesterday when someone caused the stock market to temporarily crash by hacking into AP’s Twitter feed and tweeting about a White House bombing that never happened.

Unfortunately, hacking, intrusions, phishing and Internet fraud are just some of the malicious activities that occur on a daily basis. To some extent we are so bombarded by them that we have become kind of ambivalent. This is exactly what we should not be doing. These malicious activities occur on an epic scale, probing for vulnerabilities in a highly-sophisticated manner. This is a 24/7 operation that never sleeps, takes vacation or sick days, or goes home on the weekends. It never takes a break when you do.

While many are talking about Twitter security concerns, financial institutions are obvious targets for those seeking ill-gotten gains, as well as those with anti-West and anti-capitalist political motives. And yesterday’s events proved that social media’s problem is also a business problem. It’s critical that financial services and insurance companies maintain ongoing security efforts, not only to defend against these kinds of attacks, but also to provide continuity in case of catastrophic events like Hurricane Sandy—which had a tremendous economic impact on businesses in the financial services sector.

Today, financial services institutions typically use data transmission platforms to move various data around geographically diverse entities, as well as to and from customers and partners. A burglar opening a safe that is a computer screenLegacy systems are not fit for this purpose. It’s a dirty little secret that openings exist which could be found by internal staff and malicious outsiders. The good thing is information security departments now have the budget to modernize and consolidate these platforms in order to eliminate any vulnerability, while also increasing agility and reducing costs. Learn more about SEEBURGER’s financial services offerings today.




Butterball is No Turkey When it Comes to EDI

gearsAmerica’s largest producer of turkey products takes business and technology pretty seriously. With seven plants and $2 billion in annual sales, Butterball doesn’t have time to mess around. That’s why the company decided it was time to give its legacy EDI system a last supper and adopt the SEEBURGER Business Integration Suite.

Butterball discussed their experience with the migration of legacy EDI technology and the integration with SAP during a recent presentation at the SAPPHIRE ASUG Annual Conference. In short, the company has been able to execute multiple integration projects since adopting the software, streamline business processes and use SAP’s ALE integration layer to significantly reduce project development time.

Butterball’s journey started in 2010, when the company realized its EDI system wasn’t cutting it. It couldn’t handle the workload, couldn’t meet partner’s demand for complex integrations and couldn’t onboard new trading partners efficiently. The company saw a rise in EDI error rates, which put it at risk of processing and shipping delays. Something had to be done.

So Butterball turned to the SEEBURGER Business Integration Suite (BIS) to solve those problems and increase the value of its SAP deployment. Thanks to a 40 percent increase in customer EDI enablement, shorter rush order turnaround and more customer services, Butterball was also able to reduce costs.

Visit our SEEBURGER BIS Solution Center today to learn about best practices in SAP.


Protecting financial services industry data—from the inside

safe-communications (2)It’s often said that we are our own worst enemies. According to a Ponemon Institute report, employee or contractor negligence is the root cause of almost half of all data breaches. This is important to note in the financial services and insurancesector—where data breaches can be downright catastrophic.

According to the report, the majority of breaches occur during transit to a third party or within the business unit, with endpoints and databases the most likely to be compromised. Breaches are often caused by errors in data transmission or a reliance on insecure Internet applications.

So what can you do to prevent internal data breaches? Three key things to keep in mind are:

  1. Managed File Transfer—this solution provides automated monitoring, security management and integrated governance of all structured and unstructured data exchange.
  2. Ad-hoc Information Exchanges—a solution like SEEBURGER File Exchange (SEE FX) allows users to transmit files while IT retains centralized control for security purposes.
  3. Mobile Devices—a good mobile security application will keep security protocols in place to enable secure file transfers to and from smartphones, tablets and laptops.

Building customer confidence in your ability to keep information safe is vital—especially in the financial industry. Visit our FSI Solution Center to read more about how to prevent insider data breaches, and get access case studies, videos and more.



SEEBURGER Virtual Summit- Trends in Business Integration and Secure File Transfer

SEEBURGER-Virtual-Summit-websitebuttonsTime and again, our customers have requested the opportunity to get together with other SEEBURGER users to share ideas, learn from experiences and discover best practices. As such, we are pleased to announce our first ever Virtual Summit on October 23, from noon to 3 pm eastern time.

As we were building out the agenda, we realized that we had so much great content and information to share that we decided to open up the event to all individuals interested in learning more about business integration, secure file transfer and best practices for SAP. This half day event will have 3 parallel tracks in order to address the different needs of IT, Security, and Supply Chain professionals. We will cover topics like Trading Partner Collaboration and Enablement, future trends in EDI and B2B, Cloud, DLP and much more.

We are also excited to have a number of SEEBURGER partners participating in this summit. They will be on board to share with you their knowledge and best practices. You’ll have the opportunity to hear from and interact with experts from HP, Code Green Networks , Freudenberg IT  and others to name a few.

What makes this online event very different from a webinar, is that it’s a totally interactive experience. Think of it like going to a conference and tradeshow, but from the comfort of your desk.  You’ll have the opportunity to ask questions, interact with attendees, visit sponsor booths and participate in group chats on a number of industry topics. One of the live chat sessions is a unique opportunity to interact with SEEBURGER’s CTO and Head of R&D, Michael Kleeberg. This will be a fantastic opportunity for you to hear about future developments, ask technology questions, or simply ask for tips for how to take your enterprise to the next level.

The event will open with a panel discussion, hosted by our SVP of Global Strategy, Rohit Khanna. Together with industry experts from HP, Wipro and others, Rohit will cover topics of Big Data, Mobility and Cloud, including impacts and challenges to improving B2B integration and file transfer.

To learn more about the agenda and to register, visit our registration center. You will receive a confirmation email once your registration has been processed. Make sure to visit the Virtual Summit environment a week before the live event to take advantage of some of the pre-event course work that will be available. You’ll have the opportunity to get some in-depth information about secure file transfer, B2B integration and SAP best practices. This will also be a great time to fill out your profile, to take full advance of the networking opportunities this event has to offer.

We look forward to seeing you at the SEEBURGER Virtual Summit!  Register Now!



How did you learn to swim?

security 2Hopefully you had a swim coach rather than a quick shove into the deep end of the pool.

Just like learning how to swim, bridging the gap between what employees know about data security and what they do about it during the course of a normal day requires guidance. That guidance must be interesting and simple, yet thorough. Education will go a long way towards ensuring the use of secure technology become second nature—not something to be avoided like water after a quick shove.

The reality is business users are not going to get what their role is from a quick email memo or a 50-page manual your tech writer comes up with. It takes time and reinforcement of the message that the security of data and files has real business implications. Employees must understand that the advent of mobile, cloud and social technology ensures security is no longer just IT’s job. It’s their job too.

Luckily Managed File Transfer (MFT) takes off a good chunk off the learning curve right from the get-go. Our SEE MFT solution is designed to be user-friendly—even for those who are less than technically inclined. There is still a significant need for a greater education program though, ideally one that supports open dialogue about security in an increasingly complex high-tech world.

Learn more about how to develop a risk-aware workforce in our MFT Solution Center today.



5 Major Risks of Operating with a Legacy IT Infrastructure

risk manMany companies run a mix of point solutions acquired on a piecemeal basis for EDI, B2B integration and file transfer. These applications are expensive and complex to manage and lack advanced capabilities such as visibility enabled by integration with enterprise applications. Other risks and downsides of running legacy B2B and file transfer solutions:

  1.  A lack of functionality and visibility in older infrastructure limits the organization’s ability to comply with governmental and/or industry mandates (for security, auditability and reporting, for example). In certain industries, such as health care, strict data privacy and confidentiality regulations are difficult to comply with, absent a modern platform. Other industries—high tech is one—have their own standards, such as RosettaNet. It can be prohibitively expensive to comply with these standards with an out-of-date infrastructure. Meanwhile, to meet regulatory mandates such as Dodd-Frank or Basel III, financial services companies need secure file transfer systems that provide the necessary functionality to be compliant. What’s more, the lack of functionality in older platforms limits the ability to support changing trading partner requirements. Often, the need to support a newer technology or protocol requires upgrading to a new platform.
  2. The costs and risks of supporting disparate systems and solutions are notorious. Companies that operate a mixture of products often have done point integration, leading to “spaghetti infrastructure”—a proliferation of manually connected systems and applications, understood by only a few people in the organization, aiming to handle  structured and unstructured data such as marketing materials, financial information and design documents. The cost of continuing to operate this way grows ever higher as the people who understand the connections retire or move on to other positions.
  3. Existing software faces end of life. Software vendors end their support of application and technology versions on a regular basis. Once these applications are retired, many vendors no longer offer support or version updates to meet B2B standards. They may require costly professional service engagements for any type of support, and even those may be curtailed.
  4. Companies that don’t reevaluate their IT roadmaps in light of technological developments and new hardware and software offerings at least every three to five years risk missing major opportunities to innovate and increase efficiencies.
  5. Redundant resources, rather than a staff trained on a single-platform solution, are required to operate multiple point solutions.

For more information, read CIO Magazine’s whitepaper “Reduce Enterprise Risk by Implementing One Platform for Secure and Efficient Data Transfer” and then visit our business integration resource center.



Top 10 Benefits of Using a Single Platform for Transactions of All Types

flying filesSignificant business benefits come with replacing outdated, disparate systems with a single platform that can handle all types of data transfer securely and reliably. First, the following benefits are associated with using a single platform for transferring both structured and unstructured data:

  1. Reduces risk, cuts operating costs, improves customer service, shortens time to market
  2. Speeds value to the business
  3. Streamlines, protects and accelerates supply chain processes and business operations
  4. Speeds up onboarding of trading partners—even those with limited technology or expertise
  5. Reduces the threat of data’s being misdirected, late, lost or stolen
  6. Ensures compliance with government, industry and customer privacy and security mandates

Then there are the benefits associated with increased visibility :

  1. “Single source of the truth.” It is difficult to get accurate answers and insights when data resides in multiple systems. Say, for example, a customer sends an inquiry about the status of an order that came in a few days ago. If the customer service agent has to go to multiple systems to piece together an answer, there are many opportunities for inaccuracy and inefficiency to creep in. Having a single platform means that employees need to check only one place to get an answer—increasing speed and accuracy, both of which boost customer satisfaction and confidence. Companies can also elect to give their customers and trading partners access to the same data their internal people use, an added bonus.
  2. Consistent capabilities, so employees won’t get stranded, unable to reach an answer because they are on the wrong system.
  3. Consolidated database for reporting and a single place for all the information on what happened with transactions, including file transfers and orders. As noted above, having answers reside in one place makes life easier for employees, customers and trading partners.
  4. Consistent interface within the application. When the vendor writes the application with full functionality from the ground up, having a consistent interface is a major benefit. Some vendors cobble together a solution from a variety of point applications, which adds to the training burden and often hampers usability.

For more information, read CIO Magazine’s whitepaper “Reduce Enterprise Risk by Implementing One Platform for Secure and Efficient Data Transfer” and then visit our business integration resource center


How File Transfer Solutions are Like a Car

speeding_carIn a way, finding the perfect file transfer solution is like finding the perfect car. Like a Lamborghini, some technology is just way out of your budget. Like a Hyundai, some solutions (like email, Dropbox and FTP) seem amazing because they’re super inexpensive.

Then there is the reliable BMW, that’s safe, intelligent and full of high-tech features. It shows what’s behind the car on a screen, tells you how to get places, lets you talk on speakerphone, warms your seat up and even recommends a new Chinese place for dinner.

The fact is, whether we’re talking about cars or file transfer solutions—choices you make today will have consequences tomorrow.

Email and FTP sound good because you’re already using them. And Web services sound pretty appealing the second you hear they’re free (or almost free).  But besides the fact they all fail to provide end-to-end tracking and visibility, many have an additional Achilles’ heel.

  • Email systems provide little reporting and administration features
  • FTP—even so-called “Secure FTP Servers” cannot ensure security
  • Web services (like Dropbox and YouSendIt) lack basic policy management capabilities

Email, FTP, Web services and Managed File Transfer (MFT) are all “file transfer solutions” in the same way sports cars, cheap cars and well-equipped sedans are all “cars.” Basic things can be very different. MFT offers security, automated reporting and administration, and policy management capabilities. Other solutions don’t.

mft chart

View our file transfer landscape comparison table for help finding a solution that meets your unique requirements for features, functionality and benefits.