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5/27/2005
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More Moves To Services Platform

Manhattan Associates' Web-based supply-chain applications are designed to give customers easier access to information

Manhattan Associates Inc. has become the latest supply-chain software vendor to move its offerings to a services-oriented architecture as a means to provide customers with easier, more flexible access to their information.

At its recent Momentum user conference, Manhattan Associates unveiled Web-based supply-chain applications based on what it calls the Logistics Event Management Architecture platform. The platform is built on J2EE, C++, and Microsoft .Net. "The world will move to open source, open systems with services-orientated architectures that help companies lower the cost for technology and accelerate business success," says Peter Sinisgalli, president and CEO of Manhattan Associates.

The world is moving to open systems, Manhattan Associates' Sinisgalli says.

The world is moving to open systems, Manhattan Associates' Sinisgalli says.
Large enterprise-resource-planning software vendors began moving to services-oriented architectures a couple of years ago to mod- ernize their offerings. Midmarket ERP vendor Lawson Software Inc. earlier this month revealed a domain-specific language, called Landmark, based on an architecture that generates application-specific Java code.

The moves are driven by customer needs, vendors say. Businesses depend on software to collaborate and perform supply-chain functions with suppliers and customers, and a services-oriented architecture simplifies those processes for business partners by eliminating problems created when different or proprietary technologies are used.

But there are some missing elements to the vendor's retooling. "Certain features in the portals and business processes aren't as detailed and don't go as deep into the application as they should, for example," says Jeff Woods, VP of enterprise and supply-chain systems at research firm Gartner. "But they will eventually."

Applications that Manhattan Associates has moved to the Logistics Event Management Architecture platform include transportation planning and execution, transportation procurement, trading partner management for open systems, fleet management, and distributed order management. Forthcoming features in the Logistics Event Management Architecture platform include an integrated security module with single-sign-on and alerting capabilities.

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