Often, the most complicated part about integrating your content management platform with your ERP is the precarious combination of custom scripts, scheduled server tasks, and imports/exports of flat data files and images. These integrations create multiple points of failure and provide poor auditing and tracking for individual records.
That’s why RPI has developed Yoga Connect, an API based connector for Kofax, OnBase, or Perceptive Content to exchange data programmatically with some of the largest ERP vendors, including Lawson and Microsoft Dynamics.
In this webinar, RPI Senior Solution Architect Alex Lindsey and Project Coordinator Bailey Bettis will provide a detailed overview of Yoga Connect and give a few examples of how you can replace your current integration solutions.
Hello, everyone, and thank you for joining another Webinar Wednesday. Today we’re going to be talking about Yoga Connect by RPI Consultants. It’s a product that we developed to help you integrate directly into your ERPs. A few housekeeping items to keep track of first, this recording, or this presentation will be recorded. The actual presentation itself, PowerPoint will be distributed to everyone on this call at a later date, by the end of the week, or next week.
This video will also be posted to YouTube at a later date as well. You can always reference this in the future. If you have any questions, feel free to put those in the go-to webinar chat window at any point. We’ll take questions at the end. If you have any ideas for any additional webinars that you’d like cover in the future, please feel free to put that in the window as well. We’d be happy to present on that as well.
One of the things to call out to people who have already done this webinar today, due to some technical difficulties earlier today. We are having another webinar Wednesday December fifth. We’re gonna be covering AP automation with Kofax TotalAgility and Lawson APIA and how those, kind of integrate. It’s content management with Infor Lawson. We’ve also got some past webinars that you can check out as well.
If you’re interested in the Infor practice, we have a ton of webinars that are going on as part of that winter series. My name is Alex Lindsey. I am a senior solution architect with RPI Consultants. I have a focus on basically AP automation, some other non-standard solutions and creative ways to automate things. I’m also a novice ax thrower.
Hi. My name is Bailey Bettis. I’m a senior project coordinator here at RPI. The main things I focus on, is during all projects, I make sure everything runs smoothly, things are on time, on budget. I also…Alex decided to help me out with my [PowerPoint] slide, am a rock kicking master, which means I like to rock climb and kick box in my spare time.
On the agenda for today…first of all, we’ll just tell you a little, bit more about us, here at RPI. And then, we’ll dive right into Yoga Connect, and give you guys an overview of the software we’ve created. And then, we’ll show you guys some use cases and examples so you can see how Yoga Connect can benefit your specific solution and business practices. Then, we’ll go over some of, the technical stuff, specifications needed for Yoga Connect as well as our future roadmap. And then, we will kind of summarize the whole presentation and open up the forums to any questions you guys might have.
A little, bit more about RPI. Here at RPI we have over 80 employees and that’s full-time consultants, project managers, as well as technical architects. We have three different offices. Our headquarters is in Baltimore, but we are also located in Tampa and then all of us here in Kansas City. We focus on a variety of things to help clients’ technical strategy, architecture, expert installation and upgrades. We focus mainly on specific tech software, mostly Kofax, Hyland, and Infor products. We can do a variety of solutions, and support and do managed services. In those support and managed services, we can do business process analysis, workflow design, solution product enhancements, basically a one-stop-shop for all content process automation.
Before we jump into what Yoga Connect is, what is yoga in general? Yoga is basically a flexible software suite that we’ve developed here, at RPI. It really essentially fills the gaps, when it comes to workflow processes and your ECM base. If you have perceptive content for instance, you can basically layer Yoga on top of that. That includes Yoga Docs and dashboard. That is essentially a web browser, HTML 5 web browser that allows you to process your documents, do eForm processing, look at a specific dashboard, snapshot of your workflow at any given time, historical reports, anything like that.
There’s Yoga Forms for basically a nice integrative method to do form submission, SMS which is basically to do approvals through your phone. And then, there’s Yoga capture as well. That allows you to import documents via email and other methods. There’s also Yoga Link, which is basically a screen technology that allows you to pull values from other web based ERPs and index documents.
And then, there’s of course, Yoga Connect, which we’ll jump into right now. Essentially, Yoga Connect is a connector method that we’ve developed to basically bring in data from your ERP or workflow system. If you are doing workflow processing within Kofax, OnBase, or Brainware, ReadSoft Online, Perceptive Content, any other front end technology whether it’s strictly OCR or optical character recognition, for those that may not know that term. Any other front end workflow, where you have data that needs to get push into your ERP, this could be accounting data, this could be human resources data, related to employees, student records.
Anything like that, basically this connector was developed to push data in through basically COM or rest-based calls. COM is most commonly used for the Infor practice to basically call those jobs and those modules to basically push data in. If you’re an Infor client, that looks something like the MA540, or the AP520. It’s basically get that data into your system for invoice posting. Another APIs as well, that basically any kind of rest based call, that we can communicate with, the Yoga Connect tool can facilitate that. It’s also easy to maintain and easy to install. It’s multifaceted, and product and solution agnostic, meaning that, it’s not just for AP.
We talk about accounts payable here a lot at RPI Consultants. We do it really well. We know the products really well. We understand accounting procedures really well. It’s not just for that. It can be for any kind of system. Any third party application that you need to facilitate data transfer between these systems, into another system, Yoga Connect can handle that. It’s also right now, Infor Lawson ready, meaning that you could just essentially lay this down if you’re a Lawson customer. If you’re, front ending it with one of these other applications, you can lay down Yoga Connect pretty easily and have that pushed in.
Alex already kind of hit on some of, the benefits. We do wanna dive in a little further. Some of the main takeaways you wanna learn about Yoga Connect, is it does standardize integrations across multiple platforms like Alex was saying. It’s solution agnostic, so you can use it as a translation method for multiple systems. That way you have the same standard integration translation tool for all of your softwares.
It also has real time interface, which means, it can reduce breaking points. That way you’re not dealing with scheduled tasks, you know, pushing data at specific times every day, usually at the end of the night. It’s a resting API. It can happen in real time, and happen quicker and so you can make sure your data is pushed in correctly. It can also integrate with cloud-based applications. Something like ReadSoft Online, can also work with Yoga Connect, as well as being highly customizable for all solutions.
Right. It eliminates that flat file exchange essentially. Some of, the older AP solutions for instance or older solutions leverage flat file exchange and that can get kind of cumbersome to maintain. It is customizable like Bailey said, to where if you need to do additional things along with that reference, maybe a static table somewhere that needs to pull additional information before you push it in there, or massage it in a certain way. It can be done that way.
How does it really work? The architecture’s essentially, like I mentioned before, if you have these products in place right now, you can basically leverage Yoga Connect. If you have an invoice document, or a student transcript that’s been OCR’d from Brainware by Hyland, you push this information into Yoga Connect. This is where it really, at its basis form is a translation engine, right? We take the data in any format that it comes from. From Perceptive Content for instance, we can export data on a number of different methods and whatever format you need.
Yoga Connect will take whatever information that’s coming from these systems, translate it into something that’s pertinent to your ERP, so that it directly ingests, all through, basically the API that exists. I’ll get into API versus other things as well. At its core, that’s what it does. It takes the data from one system, massages it and pushes it in all through an API, so you don’t have to worry about these break points.
A few examples that we’ll cover here to kind of give you an idea of how you could use this. Obviously, invoice posting, is a big one. We use it a lot for Lawson, that COM object, that we basically used to push data into Lawson. That would include Header and GL Coding. You can get very dynamic with the data that you’re pushing over into other systems. Obviously, if you you’re doing non-PO invoices, and you have a ton of PO lines, you could code up to 100 lines for instance and a lot of, AP eForm solutions.
All of that can be translated and managed through the Yoga Connect. Approver metadata is another one, as well as check and payment information, if that needs to be pushed in, it can be used for that. Not only that, but if you have a vendor setup process in place, let’s say for instance, you have a vendor set up form in one of those other product suites, you could basically use that information, have it go through any kind of, a review process that it needs to in that workflow engine, push the Yoga Connect into your ERP to create that vendor, if you’d like.
Like Alex said, there are other examples, not just more geared towards the AP. Another one is, if you have an HR solution, all employee records can be used through Yoga Connect. Things like benefits, employee transfer requests, termination data, we can take anything off those forms, use Yoga Connect to translate it properly and configure it in a way that makes sense to your ERP. As well as, we can do healthcare solutions as well. Claims posting, patient billing, or release of information, all of that can be used in Yoga Connect and stored appropriately.
Right. These are just standard examples. You as a client and you as a user, are using tons of different systems across your entire enterprise. Don’t feel like it’s got to be limited to just one specific thing. If you are health system for instance, and you have accounting, you have people software, accounting, you have an HRIS system, you have an EMR system, you can basically integrate with all of those.
What are some of, the technical requirements around this? Obviously, for Infor is a Microsoft COM object that’s great for direct development that we can do to basically call those modules to have that data pushed in. ASP.NET for rest-based services. Really, an ERP with any open APIs. If you have an ERP right now, that has open APIs, we can talk to it, we can translate, we can push what we need to into those, basically calls and get a response back if we need to as well, to basically make sure that, that’s done.
It is important to know here, that it doesn’t have to be an open API. Yoga Connect can be leveraged to push data in directly into a sequel Oracle database if needed as well. If you have an application, that doesn’t have open APIs, Yoga Connect can still be leveraged without those break points. We just basically do a sequel insert, instead of basically a web-based call.
Yep. The next thing is our product roadmap. Like Alex mentioned before, we do have functionality laid down for out of the box Lawson configuration. We do have some other big ERPs on our future roadmaps. Yoga Connect will be ready to go for those in the future. Some of them include Infor Cloud Suite, SAP, PeopleSoft, Oracle, and Workday. And then, another thing that we think is really important for a roadmap is GUI configuration. That way the users have an interface to actually work with Yoga Connect themselves and be able to configure it and update it later on, after it’s already laid out themselves.
Or to deploy it to another system if you like. In general, that is Yoga Connect. It’s a very, very high level without getting too technical into the weeds, but should explain kind of, that prospect and how it can integrate with your ERPs and kind of maybe take some of the administrative stress that might be going on in your organization. If you have any questions now’s the time to ask.
All right guys. The first question we have is, can Yoga Connect be used in existing implementations if we’re already using flat files?
Sure. You can basically take your existing solution. This is where we would come in and have a look at your existing integrations when we’re pushing data in. It could be a flat file like you said. We will basically replace that. We’d gather requirements, around what’s required, lay down Yoga Connect and basically configure it to basically get the data that you’re currently pushing over, translate it and then directly insert it or leverage an open API that you might have.
All right. Second question. What other requirements would you need from us?
We would definitely need, in that instance, we would definitely wanna know what the format – the JSON response – what we need to push over the XML tags. Basically, how we would map it out and what’s open on your ERP side that we could take the data, line it up and then just push it over. We want samples for instance. Sample calls, sample response. That way, then when we configure Yoga Connect, we know how to handle that information without any errors going forward.
All right. If, there are no other questions. Thank you guys so much for joining. We do have some additional resources. Please check out our knowledge base. If you want to learn more about some of the other Yoga products, or if you’d like to see a demo, please reach out to us. We’ve also got other recorded webinars as well, if you’d like to see those as well. Thank you guys very much.