EDI and Economies of Skill Power 1,600% ROI for Umbra

May 2, 2019 Danalynne Menegus

Customer success is always top of mind for us at Dell Boomi. Every day we hear stories from our customers about how they are using Boomi to drive business innovation. 

One of those companies is Toronto-based home décor retailer Umbra. The company realized a 1,600 percent ROI from using Boomi — in just 10 months, including training time.

Watch the “Measurable ROI From Agile” webinar on-demand to find out how Umbra cut costs, saved time and improved customer experience with Boomi.

The Challenge: Increasing Data, Decreasing Value

Umbra sells into more than 115 countries and has close to 75,000 distributors. This trading partner network contributes more than 75 percent of the company’s revenue.

But with electronic data interchange (EDI) handled through a managed services partner, Umbra's costs accelerated as the demand for more frequent updates increased. This growing volume of data flowing across the B2B network made it expensive to run the system and manage the data. EDI had become a bottom-line issue for the company.

“Finding the right kind of platform to run our B2B network was really important to us. And it needed to be a proven technology,” says Tariq Jamal, Umbra’s global director of technology and business process management.

At Dell Technologies World (#DellTechWorld), Apr. 29 - May 2, we talked about some of the many ways we help organizations stay ahead of the technology curve and prepare for the future. Now, you can view select sessions and get access to conference materials on-demand

Umbra was also having difficulty managing application-to-application (A2A) integration. In order to have the type of best-of-breed ecosystem that can support digital transformation, it’s imperative to have some way of connecting those various ecosystems, and the systems within them, with one another. So Jamal set out to find a way to solve all of the company’s problems at once.

The Boomi Trifecta: EDI, A2A, APIs

Jamal's team diligently searched the industry for the best integration vendors. After testing out twelve different contenders, the company narrowed it down to just one: Boomi.

According to Jamal, the reasons for selecting Boomi were threefold:

  1. Boomi’s low-code, drag-and-drop user interface (UI), paired with the Boomi JumpStart services program, promotes agility and flexibility, getting Umbra’s team up and running and able to set up integrations quickly.
  2. Boomi has a proven track record of successful EDI deployments.
  3. In addition to B2B/EDI management and data and application integration, the Boomi unified platform includes the ability to manage APIs, helping Umbra prepare for the future.

The Boomi UI makes building integrations a breeze, Jamal says. 

“Boomi’s mapping experience was much easier than a lot of the systems that have been out on the market for a very long time, or even those that allow you to get to a level of customization with a lot of code,” Jamal says.

Additionally, Boomi provides “economies of skill": Boomi's unified platform means that users only need to learn a single skillset — in Umbra’s case, not just for EDI but also for application-to-application integration and API creation and management.

“Somebody who used to only work on EDI implementation is now able to work on the A2A integrations or API integrations, because data mapping and data manipulation in Boomi for EDI or A2A is exactly the same,” Jamal says. “That gives our people the potential to do more.”

Proven Results Today, Future-Proofing for Tomorrow

Boomi is also enabling greater global reach for Umbra. Previously, Umbra adhered to the U.S. ASC X12 standard for EDI. However, much of the rest of the world uses UN/EDIFACT messages — which the company can now support.

More importantly, says Jamal, is Boomi’s influence on Umbra’s technology strategy.

“For a long time, we’ve been looking for a technology platform that will allow us to digitally transform our organization," he says. "And that's exactly what the Boomi platform delivers. Now, we’ll be able to have multiple ecosystems and applications that are best-of-breed yet still integrated."

Since implementing the EDI changeover, Umbra has used Boomi to integrate SAP applications, its Salsify product information management (PIM) system, PTC FlexPLM, and an e-commerce application — all in only three months’ time.

And Jamal is eager to see what Boomi will do next.

“To have a platform that does everything means we are ready for anything, so we can continue to evolve our EDI network as technology changes and our business grows," he says.

All kinds of organizations are benefitting from Boomi. To learn more about the value that Boomi delivers to customers, contact a Boomi integration expert today! 

About the Author

Danalynne Wheeler Menegus is a contributing writer for Dell Boomi. She has an extensive background in B2B technology marketing and communications, with companies including Dell, Enstratius, Sybase/SAP and IONA Technologies.

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