Technology

Boeing Automates its Payables and Payroll

CA and IBM think big iron, while BroadVision gets a quick fix.
CFO.com StaffFebruary 27, 2001

Boeing’s Bottom Line

The Boeing Co.’s Aerospace Operations subsidiary licensed Bottomline’s PayBase Universal Payments Engine to automate its accounts payable and payroll operations. Boeing will use the system with its existing back- office systems, including PeopleSoft’s human resources applications.

The aircraft maker will use PayBase to deploy a Web-based system for remote payment initiation, reporting, and approval. PayBase generates payments with little manual intervention, although Boeing has also licensed a check-fraud avoidance module that receives bank confirmation before authorizing payments.

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CA Associates with IBM

Computer Associates International says IBM Global Services is adding more than 180 CA systems to the IBM SystemPac offering. Prior to Monday’s announcement, IBM SystemPac had only included CA enterprise storage management products and systems for the DB2 database for OS/390 mainframe operating system.

Under the agreement, IBM Global Services will distribute the CA systems and bundle them with IBM operating systems, although CA will continue to sell the products through its own VARs and system integrators.

Peer Pressure

A company in the business of reviving abandoned technologies is preparing a peer-to-peer search engine aimed straight at the heart of Google, according to Cnet News. Project Pandango, the work-in-progress of Seattle-based i5 Digital, attempts to prioritize the thousands of Web pages that are retrieved in common Web queries by examining the Web surfing histories of a wide network of computers.

Cnet says Pandango’s creators want to take the peer-to-peer model popularized by file-swapping applications such as Napster, and build a search technology on it.

i5 Digital is negotiating deals with Web portals and corporate customers that could, in theory, use the application to facilitate communication among employees. This could eliminate redundant efforts if employees could see the Web resources their colleagues have mined. But it’s still far from clear that this business model is practical.

Vision Repair

BroadVision Inc. says the next generation version of Grainger.com, a business-to-business provider of maintenance, repair, and operating (MRO) supplies, has gone live on BroadVision applications. BroadVision and Grainger joined forces to complete the transition from the old site, which went live in 1996 and provides online access to more than 220,000 MRO products.

Grainger is using BroadVision’s Business Commerce and One-To-One Publishing, which are used for order processing, contract administration, and customer service. One-To-One creates user profiles features for individuals involved in corporate purchasing and procurement. The BroadVision packages are also being integrated with Grainger’s inventory systems.

The systems include customer order histories and order status.

Bits and Bytes

  • i2 Technologies and Intel Corp. announced a marketing alliance to combine i2’s E-marketplace and supply chain management applications on Intel Xeon and Itanium servers. The agreement covers joint sales and marketing programs, product development, and on-site Intel engineering services and support. i2’s products include TradeMatrix for large corporations and Pronto for small- to medium-sized businesses.
  • Intel’s server business can probably use the endorsement from i2. Trade publication eWeek reported that Intel will enter its Developers Forum next week hobbled by the softening economy and the weight of recent misfires. Intel is being criticized for its recent buying spree – – in which it acquired more than two dozen companies for more than $7 billion in a bid to broaden its revenue base — but has yet to produce significant results.
  • Infinium formed a marketing partnership with Richer Systems Group Inc., the developer of Enrich, a real-time fleet management system for the transportation industry. Enrich addresses the peculiarities of the for-hire segment of the transportation industry. Infinium’s human resources and financial enterprise systems are widely used by transportation companies.
  • Reuters reported that IBM is setting up a software partner program to encourage more companies to integrate their applications with its servers and mainframes. Big Blue wants to sign about 50 partners under the new initiative, known as Alliance Lite, and generate at least $10 million in joint annual revenue from each deal.
  • Market research firm the Yankee Group says the developer network Intuit launched earlier this month should strengthen its position in vertical markets. Under the program, the company will open its application programming interfaces to third-party developers. The APIs are currently available for the company’s Site Solutions Web- site creation tool and QuickBase collaborative database service. But a full release of the API specifications for the QuickBooks accounting program will be made available with the next release of the system.
  • EDS and F5 Networks also entered the marketing alliance sweepstakes by agreeing to develop and market products to provide security and backup support for Web sites. F5 will provide its Internet traffic and content management products, while EDS will contribute its business process management services and hosting facilities. The alliance’s first product is Global Web Assurance, a subscription-based managed service that will give clients 24-hours-a-day, seven-days-a-week Web site availability.

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