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A revolution in product data processing

Delve into the world of automotive data solutions with Frank Leschonski, Product Owner for Data Solutions-Instant Data Processing (IDP) at TecAlliance.

In this interview, Frank Leschonski shares insights into the cutting-edge IDP technology and its implications for the automotive aftermarket industry. From market analysis to future developments, join us as we explore the forefront of automotive data integration with one of our leading experts.

Frank, thank you for joining us today. Could you tell us how you came to your current role at as Product Owner for Data Solutions-Instant Data Processing (IDP)?

I joined TecDoc as an expert in data clearing centre platforms and master data management. With experience in various sectors such as public transport and fast-moving consumer goods, I found my way to the data world of TecDoc. Here I have taken on the responsibility for driving and managing the further development of the core TecDoc platform. I do this in collaboration with data suppliers and users.

In my day-to-day work, I am focused on providing a fundamentally new option for TecDoc Data Suppliers who want to connect their own PIMs or data maintenance systems directly to TecDoc. The idea is to eliminate unnecessary detours and delays.

 
What insights have you gained from analysing the market and understanding customer needs in the context of IDP?

“Time to Market” has been one of the most important topics for a long time. Speed has become increasingly important when it comes to the delivery of correct and reliable data to customers. Any process that forces the part industry to run time-consuming data delivery chains will not survive. Instant data processing is a requirement that our IDP fulfils.

Looking at IDP technology, how does it differ from standard functionalities available on the market? What specific problems or challenges does it aim to address?

The TecDoc Data Distribution IDP backend is unique in the automotive aftermarket. It combines the benefits of a data and information standard with the speed of immediate data publication. Customers can continue to rely on the globally recognised standard while they can update their data at any time and to any extent. In the medium and long term, this helps our customers to significantly streamline their internal processes, save time and money, and enable staff to focus on their core businesses, as opposed to managing TecDoc data upload procedures.

Could you tell us more about the particular solutions where IDP technology is applied such as IDP Data Supplier API, and TecDoc ONE?

IDP technology is at the heart of it all.

As a data supplier, you can choose to use TecDoc ONE as a powerful PIM system to manage your product information for the TecDoc distribution chain.

If you still want to use your own PIM system or another system to maintain the data for TecDoc, you can use the same backend directly through the IDP Data Supplier API without using TecDoc ONE. Once connected, your team can continue working in their familiar environment– now with full control over data delivery to the TecDoc data supply chain.

Any update of information to TecDoc can be done from within your systems and is published immediately. There is no need for additional hardware, software, training, or special effort. Of course, this does require initial development, which our well-trained team of technical consultants will be happy to help you with.

And if a customer needs more time for a project to connect their PIM directly to the IDP API – what could be the solution meanwhile?

If you need more time for such a project and therefore need to continue uploading complete packages of TAF-formatted data to TecDoc Data Distribution, in that case, we offer a new product: TecDoc Data Wave that you can use while you are investigating and preparing a direct connection to the IDP Data Supplier API.

With TecDoc Data Wava, you can upload TAF packages, review validation reports, and decide to publish the full package. It will then–as today–replace your brand data in the TecDoc database.

For a data user, we offer a similar approach that allows you to simply retrieve updated information based on a connection to a similar outbound API (IDP Data Receiver API). You can directly integrate just-in-time updates of business objects such as articles, linkages, and assets into your data processing tools and business processes. This brings clear benefits.

Focusing on the IDP Data Supplier API, can you explain how it works? Who benefits most from this solution?

The IDP Data Supplier API is an interface that allows a software development team to connect any information system directly to the distribution system. It is based on a standard architecture, uses cloud technology, and offers a completely different view of the formatting of TecDoc data. Instead of sending tables where information for single articles or linkages must be collected from several different tables, the IDP interface processes individual business objects such as articles, linkages or assets (images).

Any company with its own PIM or data maintenance system should, in my opinion, benefit from introducing the IDP API. It is closer to the real business objects and opens the possibility of upgrading existing systems and business processes.

For companies considering implementing a Product Information Management (PIM) system for the first time, we recommend that they choose TecDoc ONE as their new PIM system. This brings access to a new PIM and the IDP. You would be killing two birds with one stone.

What has been the experience of customers using the IDP API solution?

Here we believe that no news is good news. Once our customers have implemented the API, there is no extensive feedback. We see continuous data updates, but we are not hearing any questions or complaints. We are glad to receive recommendations for further optimisation of the onboarding process and documentation. This shows that our approach is a good one. Using standard technology reduces the work for both software developers and those on the business side.

How do you see the future development of IDP technology?

IDP technology will be one of the core enablers to ensure that TecDoc remains the leading solution for the international automotive aftermarket. All aftermarket trading partners will find it difficult not to use IDP technology. Our immediate goal is to maintain the IDP backend as a stable, reliable, and scalable solution for all TecDoc customers.

We have two additional areas of action for the foreseeable future:

Adding more content and providing tools to lower the entry-level and reduce the cost of directly using the IDP Data Supplier API. And–this is enabling technology–using IDP technology to support your business by providing a standard channel to publish your data.

When Instant Data Processing is so common that nobody talks about it anymore, we will know that we have fulfilled our mission.

Frank, thank you very much for this interview!

TecAlliance GmbH
Steinheilstraße 10
85737 Ismaning
Tyskland
VAT nummer: DE212306071

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