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EDI + APIs: 3 Ways to Create Greater Value Together

By Michael Cardillo | Wed, Sep 30, 2020

My colleague, Jim Cantin, recently wrote an excellent article on “Why APIs and EDI Are More Complementary Than Competitive.”

This is an interesting topic and we get many inquiries from clients who want to explore how they can integrate these two platforms and improve the synergy from both a business and IT perspective.   I would like to take this discussion to the next level and offer concrete steps that outline how you can look for opportunities in this space.

Let’s start with a simple view of where to look for synergies.   I’ll focus on three areas:

  • Where can you supplement your EDI with APIs and give your trading partners access to a suite of transactions and capabilities?
  • Where can you improve your EDI success rates by utilizing APIs to add supplemental data to inbound or outbound transactions?
  • Where can you combine support processes to both save money and improve the trading partner experience?

Now let’s look at how you can answer these questions to enhance your capabilities.

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Navigating Change and Disruption with Enterprise Architecture

By Michael Cardillo | Thu, May 21, 2020

As I work from my home amid the COVID-19 crisis, I can’t help but think that the need for Enterprise Architecture is greater than ever. Now is a time when organizations need to be thinking about the changes they need to make in order to survive and eventually to prosper in this new world. 

Many business leaders may overlook the role of Enterprise Architecture in these changes, believing it to be mainly a technical concern.   

In reality, Enterprise Architecture is about alignmentaligning people, processes, and technologies to achieve business goals. It's also about aligning to navigate significant change and disruption successfully.

Unfortunately, as I shared in my "What is Enterprise Architecture?" post, this is broken in most organizations, and they'll struggle to leverage EA effectively—even during the times they need it most.

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Why Now is the Time to INVEST in Your Strategy

By Michael Cardillo | Thu, Apr 02, 2020

I just listened to a podcast about an automobile parts company that was facing significant challenges in the current COVID-19 crisis.  With auto plants all over the world shut down, they were facing an unprecedented crash of all orders and sales. 

To their credit, rather than laying people off and contracting, they looked for new opportunities.  It turns out that one component they manufacture is pistons for various automobile applications. It just so happens that ventilators use pistons—ventilators that are now in unprecedented demand.

This company was able to shift its production to producing ventilator-sized pistons quickly.  They already have partnerships with several manufacturers and a huge backlog of orders.  That’s a pivot of a business model that will enable the company to not only survive this crisis, but to actually grow their revenue in 2020.  

I’ve noticed that many organizations are taking the opposite approach.  They are canceling projects and investments to create a surplus of cash.  That isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but the question is, do you sit on that cash…or do you re-think your strategy—and thus your investments?

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What is Enterprise Architecture and What are its Benefits?

By Michael Cardillo | Mon, Mar 23, 2020

Understanding Enterprise Architecture (EA)

Welcome to the first post in our Enterprise Architecture blog and video series. In this series, we'll explore the importance of EA in achieving business goals, highlight best practices, discuss pitfalls to avoid, and examine how organizations are leveraging EA to maximize value from their technology investments.  Check out the video or read the transcript below. 

My name is Mike Cardillo, and I run the Enterprise Architecture practice for Lightwell. I've been in IT for about 30-35 years, and I've been doing Enterprise Architecture for about 20-25 years.

I've spent the last 10 years in consulting in Enterprise Architecture and have helped companies with creating and running EA programs, as well as building strategies such as digital strategies, transformation strategies—and how we use Enterprise Architecture to drive the business.


Enterprise Architecture is about how you align your business investments—your projects essentially—with your business goals and objectives, and that is broken in most organizations.

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B2B integration: 4 pitfalls to avoid

By Lightwell | Wed, May 28, 2014

B2B integration can be a game-changing force for many companies, but that doesn't mean implementation will be painless. There are a variety of problems that can complicate the efficiency and effectiveness of a B2B integration initiative. If they are not adequately addressed in deployment plans, minor issues can morph into major roadblocks to a high ROI. They can complicate B2B efforts to the degree that an enterprise can be worse off than before it tried to implement B2B integration at all.

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Like a layer cake: A guide to the levels of B2B managed services

By Lightwell | Mon, May 05, 2014

Many B2B companies today struggle with some manifestation of the old proverb "you can't have your cake and eat it, too." With business moving faster than ever and so many options for enterprise improvement available, it can be easy for a company to feel like it's taken on more than it can handle. When that competitive spirit kicks in, though, it's hard not to look at another organization and wonder how it does it. Today's top companies seem to easily integrate new innovations and reap the benefits of disruptive technologies without any of the negative interruptions.

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How the Internet of Things will reshape supply chain management

By Lightwell | Wed, Apr 30, 2014

The Internet of Things is poised to dramatically reshape supply chain management. The phenomenon, which represents the addition of Internet connectivity to previously unconnected electronics, has been heralded as a means to create "smart" versions of objects, from toothbrushes to buildings, by turning them into data-capturing devices.

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CFOs: Get involved in supply chain management

By Lightwell | Thu, Feb 06, 2014

Many organizational roles have had to undergo transformations to address new employee and customer demands. As businesses face greater pressure to more reliably and quickly deliver products and services, they must find ways of doing so without creating excessive risk - as any disruptions in normal operations could have productivity and reputational consequences. This evolution of responsibility has even been felt in the C-suite: according to a recent Ernst & Young report, the CFO must now think beyond the scope of corporate financial resources and risk. 

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Business managers: Who's overseeing your data security IT services?

By Lightwell | Tue, Jul 16, 2013

Few business or IT leaders would question the importance of protecting data if asked directly, and the threat of a privacy or security breach has been made a real prospect in light of recent events. Whether the risk stems from the organization's own system administrators (as it did in the case of Edward Snowden) or from cybercriminals, such incidents can be costly for companies and their customers. In fact, even a single incident may leave a trail of billions of dollars in expenses if data such as payment card numbers is compromised. Most companies are likely aware of the risk, but the problem is that many do not have appropriate oversight of their own data security practices.

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