Infor is an established software provider in the manufacturing ERP and EAM space. Our customers that use Infor for financial and EAM functionality are typically looking for better shop floor support and an integrated workflow/process-based solution to handle maintenance and production workloads in a unified way. Making sure Infor and CloudDISPATCH are in sync is a worthwhile integration to consider.
Below is a list of general use cases for integration with ERP systems like Infor. This information contains the general workflow and best practices we have discovered working with our customers.
General ERP / EAM / CMMS Use Cases:
- Spares / Inventory Management
- Asset Management
- Master Data Management
- Allocation of Labor & Spares Costs from Shop Floor Activities
- Production Orders and Status
- Labor and historical record retention in the EAM / CMMS system
Supported Versions Details:
We support Infor CloudSuite Financials (various industry editions including SyteLine), M3, and Infor EAM built on the Infor Xi platform. This encompasses all of the major versions from the last several years. This is typically done through the Infor ION integration platform.
Integration Methods and Best Practices:
When it comes to Infor, L2L CloudDISPATCH integration API endpoints and use cases are well known and documented. Depending on your specific Infor spare parts reservations, ordering, receiving, and issuing procedures you will likely need to customize the Infor ION integration code to match your business needs. This is normal and average for this industry. Infor is a very powerful financial system that allows for very advanced customizations that meet industry and company-specific policies, requirements, and regulations. Based on this you should plan on customizing and tailoring our best practices to fit your needs.
Infor Connectivity Options
When integrating with Infor applications, you'll likely use Infor ION. ION supports multiple different connectors to exchange data with external systems like CloudDISPATCH. These include the Web Service Connector, the Application Connector, and a File Connector option. The Web Service connector is the most likely option since it supports the ability to connect, send, enrich, and receive data directly from web services.
The Infor Application Connector is the preferred option from the Infor perspective, because it is decoupled and event-driven, and the application can validate the correctness and consistency of incoming data. From a modeling and management perspective, the Infor Application Connector also is the best choice, because the modeling is very simple and the management in ION Desk is the richest for this connector.
If you cannot use the Infor Application Connector, you can consider using the File Connector option. File Connector is suitable for legacy applications that only support a file-based integration, and it can be event-driven. Your Integration application on the other side must be in a position to create files in a format that ION can process, or read files as provided by ION. The data must be transformed to a Business Object Documents (BOD) XML message. Multilevel data (header and lines) can be formatted in multiple ways in one or more files, while the File Connector does not support all options. There is a risk of delivering the same message twice in case of interruptions or timeouts.
For more information on these methods please review the following links:
- Infor ION Technology Connectors
- Infor ION Development Guide-Cloud Edition
- Infor ION API Administration Guide
In our experience, most customers have either a middleware solution or existing IDOC integrations and experience and prefer to go with what they know. We have a reference IDOC implementation as part of our L2L Integration server. Please contact support for more information on the L2L Integration Server.
Depending on your established Infor integration standards you might develop this integration using an existing middleware solution. When it comes to Infor ION, since it's a middleware platform itself, you will typically use the standard REST API connectors to connect the two systems together.
L2L API Code Examples
You might be asking yourself, I'm technical, can't I just do this myself? YES! Based on how easy it is to use our API, a lot of customers jump right in and write custom Infor ION integrations using the tools, programming languages, and platforms they are most comfortable with. If this is you, we've created a number of API code examples in all of the most popular programming languages. Check out our Github repository at:
- Spares API Integration Workflow
- Integration Options and Best Practices
- L2L Integration Overview and Architecture Diagrams