SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. AMR Research has presented its top supply chain innovation award to a groundbreaking partnership and automated technology based service solution called The Total EDI (Electronic Data Interchange) Solution.
The AMR Research Supply Chain Top 25 identifies companies that demonstrate leadership in applying demand-driven principles to their global supply chains. The goal is to show how supply chain excellence contributes to creating economic value and raise awareness of the importance and influence of the profession.
The Total EDI Solution was established through a partnership of Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance, (the Alliance), Activant Solutions and Gcommerce. The automated service and turnkey connection process has resulted in the partnership capturing the John Fontanella Supply Chain Innovation Award in its inaugural year, having renamed the award in honor of John Fontanella, whose AMR Research legacy was devoted to supply chain innovation. Previous winners included Colgate Palmolive and Salesforce.com.
AMR Research praised The Alliance’s unique collaboration in creating The Total EDI Solution, for automating procurement between members and vendors of the aftermarket auto-parts program to create supply chain efficiencies for both. Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance, one of the nation’s largest auto parts program distribution groups, announced the initiative in December 2007, and selected GCommerce to computerize the procurement cycle.
Dick Morgan, president and CEO of Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance, accepted AMR Research’s John Fontanella Supply Chain Innovation Award in Scottsdale on behalf of the partnership.
“Despite 21st century successes, our industry is among many in which business management solutions typically had not been automated or online,” said Morgan. “Automated electronic information exchange is the only way to eliminate costly errors and delays that come with manual processes. Further, to ensure mutual efficiencies, Alliance members are committed to two-way electronic exchange with the participation of our vendors.”
GCommerce worked with Alliance vendors and members integrating with Activant and other platforms creating a single solution connecting everyone.
Alliance members provide parts and services through more than 2,300 retail sites working on 26 different platforms. Prior to the launch of The Solution, 25 percent of member orders were sent using manual processes (primarily phone and fax), including special orders. GCommerce and Activant developed a relationship that facilitated two-way electronic document exchange, allowing members and vendors to automate manual processes that provided the foundation for enhanced inventory management. Activant Solutions provides document integration for Alliance members who are using their systems.
GCommerce facilitates the connection of the 53 independently-owned Alliance members with 249 vendors, representing 89 percent of total Alliance Group purchase volume. With nearly 3 million transactions per year, it is estimated the Alliance members will collectively save more than $17 million annually, representing a 2,000 percent ROI.
“Whether automating manual processes, facilitating two-way electronic document exchange, providing the foundation for inventory management or creating new enterprise partnerships,” said Steven Smith, GCommerce president and CEO, “ultimately, our web-based software service saves significant resources for trading partners and provides a service model for many industries.”
“We are very proud of our long and successful relationship with the Alliance, Dick Morgan and Dale Hopkins (vice president of Information Technology for the Alliance), who share our vision of connecting the aftermarket supply chain to achieve greater operational efficiency and competitiveness,” said Tom Aliotti, senior vice president and general manager of the Activant automotive business group. “The Alliance Total EDI Solution combines Activant’s innovative business management and connectivity solutions with GCommerce’s established EDI interface between distributors and their suppliers.”