Archive for the ‘b2bi’ Category

Royal Bank of Scotland selects Accountis for e-invoicing

The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) is implementing technology from Fundtech-subsidiary Accountis to provide bank-branded electronic invoicing services to its corporate customers.

The Accountis platform uses UBL standards for its documents.

RBS has signed a multi-year contract for Accountis’s electronic invoice presentment and payment (EIPP) technology which it will use to provide VAT-compliant e-invoicing services to corporate customers in the UK.

The application provides detailed status information – such as proof of delivery, acceptance, query and approval status – for all documents involved in a business transaction, from purchase order to invoices. The service also provides real time dispute management.

Accountis says RBS customers that implement the service will be able replace slow and costly paper-based processes with a faster and more environmentally-friendly technology. It also facilitates the bank provision of invoice-based financing services.

“For our customers we see e-invoicing as a fast-track to saving time and money,” says Ian Watkinson, head of e-invoicing, RBS. “In addition to eliminating paper and automating manual processes, users of the service will quickly benefit from real-time document management, faster settlements and better working capital optimisation.”

Watkinson says e-invoicing is a “strategic addition” to the bank’s product portfolio.

“By offering additional transaction services such as e-invoice delivery, we will gain greater visibility of our customer’s end-to-end, financial supply chain transactions. This will help us to improve our understanding of their business and strengthen our long-term relationship,” he adds.

Advertisements

European eProcurement Capabilities Survey

The eProcurement Forum, the DG Internal Market and Services and IDABC e-Invoicing and e-Ordering project of the European Commission and the CEN Workshop on Business Interoperability Interfaces for Public Procurement are kindly inviting you to complete an eProcurement online questionnaire.
The objective of this survey is to gather information about existing eProcurement systems and supporting tools that can help fulfil the vision of seamless, standards-based electronic public procurement across Europe as committed in the i2010 eGovernment Action Plan. With this aim we are inviting you to provide us with some information about the capabilities of your organisation and your initiatives on this domain, including the usage or development of IT applications.

For more information visit:
http://www.epractice.eu/info/82/6

You can access the survey by connecting to the IPM Tool at:
http://ec.europa.eu/yourvoice/ipm/forms/dispatch?form=eProcurementSurvey

An overview of UBL

Universal Business Language (UBL) is a library of standard electronic XML business documents such as purchase orders and invoices. UBL was developed by an OASIS Technical Committee with participation from a variety of industry data standards organizations. UBL is designed to plug directly into existing business, legal, auditing, and records management practices. UBL version 2.0 was approved as an OASIS Committee Specification in October 2006 and has been publicly released.

History of UBL 2.0 

UBL 2.0 is quite mature having its roots in the EDI standards, which first appeared in the 1960s. The ANSI institute developed the X12 EDI standard in 1979; widely used in the US and at about the same time the EDIFACT standard was introduced by UN/ECE (United Nations Economic Commission). EDIFACT became an ISO standard in 1987.

The predecessors of UBL as XML standards were the CBL and xCBL standards, the latter derived from EDIFACT and X12. UBL itself is created from the ebXML Core Component library, also derived from EDI and created by OASIS and standardized as ISO 15000-5 in September 2005

UBL 2.0 is the 6th generation XML standard:

  • G1 (1Q 1998): CBL 1.0 (VEO/NIST)
  • G2 (2Q 1999): CBL 2.0 (Commerce One)
  • G3 (4Q 2000): xCBL 3.0 (Commerce One og SAP)
  • G4 (1Q 2003): UBL 0.7 (OASIS)
  • G5 (4Q 2004): UBL 1.0 (OASIS)
  • G6 (1Q 2007): UBL 2.0 (OASIS)

UBL 2.0 was ratified as an OASIS standard in December 2007. According to plans UBL 2.0 will become a UN/CEFACT specification soon and will later become a UN/CEFACT standard. UN/CEFACT will take over development of UBL 2.0.

UBL 2.0 traces its origins back to the EDI standards and other derived XML standards. In total there are 31 documents covering business needs in the phases of presale, ordering, delivery, invoicing and payment.

Overview of UBL 2.0 Documents

The UBL 2.0 Standard includes 31 documents in total, roughly grouped here below:

  • Presale: Request for quotation, Quotation, Catalog request, Catalog, Catalog deletion, Catalog item update, Catalog pricing update.
  • Ordering: Order, Order response, Simple order response, Order cancellation, Order change.
  • Delivery: Bill of lading, Certificate of origin, Forwarding instructions, Packing list, Transportation status, Way bill, Receipt advice, Despatch advice
  • Invoicing: Reminder, Invoice, Self billed invoice, Credit note, Self billed credit note, Debit note, Self billed debit note, Statement
  • Payment: Remittance advice
  • Other: Application response, Attached document

Sources: http://www.unimaze.com and Wikipedia

BPMN to BPEL: going to battle with one hand tied?

William Vambenepe writes, “I have been looking at business process modeling and I am a bit puzzled about the connections between the different goals (strategy support, process documentation, automated execution….), audiences (LOB, business analysts, developers…) and tools (process editor, registry, simulation bench, IDE…). I see how it would be nice for all these to play well together. What I don’t quite see is exactly how the current tools achieve that.

One example is the goal of improving communications between business analysts and developers by allowing analysts to capture as much of the intended process as possible in a way that can be easily consumed by developers. That is a worthy goal and it should be eventually achievable (though maybe in a reformulated form) based on industry trends (who would have thought that one day business people would use their own computers to retrieve business data rather than having an operator print documents for them). But it is still a very difficult goal, for which many inherent barriers (in terms of shared vocabulary, skills and mindset) must be overcome. My concern is that the current approaches add many artificial barriers to those intrinsic to the problem.

One source of such artificial barriers is that incompatible business process description languages come into play. One common example is the use of BPMN for analyst-level modeling followed by a translation to BPEL for development tasks. I ran into an example of an incompatibility between the two very early in my experimentations with BPMN, in the form of the “inclusive OR” (the diamond with a circle inside in BPMN).

Read the complete article by William Vambenepe.

OASIS issues Call for Participation in new ebCore Technical Committee

All interested parties are invited to participate in the new OASIS ebXML Core (ebCore)  Technical Committee.

This group will manage clarifications, modifications, and enhancements for ebXML specifications that are completed or transitioned to it.

The ebCore TC may also produce new conformance profiles and adjunct documents complementing existing specifications.

It will explore synergies with UN/CEFACT, WS-* specifications and SOA best practices.

TC proposers include representatives of Axway, Boeing, Fujitsu, and others.

A TC chair or two co-chairs will be elected at the first meeting, which will be held by teleconference on 4 April. 

Read the complete Call for Participation from OASIS.