ZSL Inc.

IBM WebSphere Cast Iron Cloud integration cuts 24-hour reporting delay to near-real time

Published on 26-Apr-2012

"WebSphere Cast IronCloud integration integrates data in near-real time, savingthe staff 4 - 6 hours aweek, and turning a 24-hourdelay in reporting into near-realtime visibility, for moreinformed decisions." - Bharath Yadla, head of social commerce and cloud integration, ZSL Inc.

ZSL Inc.


Deployment country:
United Kingdom

IBM Business Partner:
ZSL, Inc.


This iconic luxury lifestyle brand is defined by an empowered sense of glamour and a confident sense of style. It began with the designer himself, a custom London shoemaker who catered to the global jet set. The brand has grown to 140 stores in 32 countries.

Business need:
A high-end shoe retailer needed to integrate three cloud service databasesto get a unified view of its customers and their orders.

IBM Premier Business Partner ZSL Inc.used IBM WebSphere Cast Iron Cloud integration to integrate the three databases with a simple, “no-coding”approach.

Sixty percent less time to integrate databases compared to manual integration; 4 - 6 hours saved per week of IT stafftime spent synchronizing databases;Near-real time visibility on customers andtheir orders, reduced from 24 hours.

Case Study

It’s been said that you can’t manage what you can’t see. And if you can’t see a unified picture of your customers and their orders, it’s going to be hard to deliver great service. That was the challenge facing a high-end shoe retailer. The iconic luxury lifestyle brand is defined by an empowered sense of glamour and a confident sense of style. It began with the designer himself, a custom London shoemaker who catered to the global jet set. The brand has grown to 140 stores in 32 countries.

Women’s shoes remain at the core of products offered, alongside handbags, small leather goods, scarves, sunglasses, eyewear, belts, fragrance and men’s shoes. One look at 15 years of the company’s advertising and you can see that the brand represents art that people can wear. And customers are passionate about having it and wearing it. “Customers love to come into stores and pick up the products, or order products online—they are very loyal,”says Bharath Yadla, head of social commerce and cloud integration at ZSL Inc., an IBM Premier Business Partner that works with the retailer.“But the company didn’t have visibility into what each customer was buying. That made great service more difficult.”

Show me everything
At the core of the challenge was a classic IT problem: Helpful information was present but siloed in different applications. Orders were captured using Venda, an e-commerce system. They were fulfilled and shipped and inventory was managed using Net-a-Porter (NAP), another system developed by the online luxury fashion retailer with that name. The luxury shoe retailer wanted to have end-to-end order visibility, from placement to fulfillment. It wanted to be able to profile customers, roll out its United Kingdom online store to the United States and consolidate all activity from all countries. It also wanted to increase salesperson productivity by providing better information.

It chose Salesforce.com as its CRM and sales reporting solution.“Data needed to flow between the three systems,” Yadla explains. “In deciding to go with Salesforce.com, the company wanted to integrate the company’s data globally and have Salesforce.com be the one place fo rsales reporting, and a unified view of customers.”A 360-degree view would give managers and salespeople the ability to spot trends more easily, track orders and inventory, and give customers better, more personalized service and lead to faster adoption by sales people. To get there, however, the problem was how to move data between Venda, NAP and Salesforce.com—all cloud services. When the company signed up for Salesforce.com, it received a recommendation to use IBM WebSphere®Cast Iron®Cloud integration. Zylog Systems Ltd (ZSL) is a leading independent software vendor (ISV),global systems integrator and business solutions provider based in Edison,New Jersey with more than 4,500 employees worldwide. The company is focused on developing and delivering enterprise IT solutions and services using emerging technology platforms to keep the TCO low and ROI high.

Cutting database integration time by 60 percent
ZSL’s integration work went quickly. In its prior environment, the luxury shoe store’s database programmers had worked out manual integration of Venda and NAP by writing code to synchronize fields—a project that had taken 10 weeks of work by three to five people. Says ZSL’s Yadla: “Using IBM WebSphere Cast Iron Cloud integration, it took two people from ZSL just 27 days to integrate three databases. That’s 60 percent less time than the earlier manual integration of two of the customer’s databases.” ZSL implemented a simple “no coding” approach to integration: “From the moment a new customer record is created on the shoe company’s website, it’s automatically pulled into Salesforce, given an ID number, and replicated back to Venda and NAP as well, so that Salesforce data becomes a master,” Yadla observes. “The biggest benefit that the company gets is order visibility in near-real time.”The solution also saves staff time.

“Before deploying WebSphere CastIron Cloud integration, the company’s IT staff had to manually transfer data between the Venda and NAP databases to synchronize them in order to run reports,” Yadla notes. “That took about 4 - 6 hours a week of staff time and caused at least a 24-hour delay in reporting. Now, WebSphere Cast Iron Cloud integration integrates data in near-real time, saving the staff 4 - 6 hours a week, and turning a 24-hour delay in reporting into near-real time visibility, for more informed decisions.”Near real-time order visibility also results in a faster order-to-shipment process, speeding fulfillment by a day. Looking ahead, the retailer’s team plans to integrate other custom databases and other countries into the solution. “They can be brought in very easily,” Yadla says.

The luxury shoe company will also be able to get new products to market faster, manage its supply chain more efficiently and respond to trends with greater agility, Yadla notes. “They can profile a customer and see every order attached to that customer. It will be easier for them to roll out their online store out into other regions, and to take more advantage of social commerce opportunities such as Facebook. It will be easier to deliver results that can look as great as their products.”

For more information
To learn more about IBM WebSphere Cast Iron Cloud integration, contact your IBM sales representative or IBM Business Partner, or visit the following website:


For more information on ZSL, Inc., visit: www.zsl.com

Products and services used

IBM products and services that were used in this case study.

WebSphere Cast Iron Hypervisor Edition Standard

Legal Information

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