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The most important enhancements of Patch 2 | 2018

Classic Line General: inspect data integrity feature

Data quality affects the entire ecosystem of a publisher using Klopotek standard software and interfaces to support their business. Experience shows that poor data quality causes unnecessary disruption and can even result in lost revenue. In addition, the analysis and correction of data quality issues may require significant effort and cause dissatisfaction in the affected business units.

High-quality data must be both accurate (data accuracy) and valid (data integrity). For example, if you identify that an MDT configuration used in the operational tables has no reference in the master MDT configuration, this is a data integrity issue. If you release products to the market without a given industry classification like BISAC or ‘Thema’, this is a data accuracy problem.

The ‘Data integrity and validation check’ batch procedure (available as of Version 10.8) focuses on the fundamental task of identifying data inconsistencies and issues with data integrity. There are various causes for data inconsistencies and integrity problems in your database, including software bugs, migration issues, and direct data manipulations. These points may result in disruptions to the Klopotek software, to import/export procedures, and to update/upgrade processes.

Our batch procedure checks the referential integrity of the Klopotek databases based on a pre-configured set of rules defining parent-child relationships. A database package performs the check on the Oracle server and provides the results – including the underlying detailed SQL check script – in a log table. The log entries and SQL check scripts can be used to analyze and resolve the inconsistency.

The initial set of approximately 1,600 rules provides comprehensive coverage of the TEP, CR&R, IAP, and O2C domains. The rule set can and will be enhanced based on customer feedback. Individual rules can also be defined easily. Are you interested in this opportunity? Please contact your consultant, so we can send you an offer to support your analyzing procedures.

Classic Line General: Automation Engine version 12.2

In order to control batch processing within the standard Klopotek software, you use the supplemental software Automation Engine from CA Technologies (formerly Automic Software). The latest version (12.2) is supported. Upgrading to this version enables, among other things, secure connections between the ServiceManager and its clients using TLS 1.2 (Transport Layer Security) encryption as well as zero downtime upgrades.

Switching to this version is optional and possible as of Klopotek Version 10.8, Patch 2 | 2018. Please note that end of maintenance for version 11.2 of the Automation Engine was October of this year.

Classic Line General: enhanced integration and jump out options

Our integration capabilities have been strengthened: As of Version 11.0, it is now possible to directly jump out to third-party systems from a results list on search forms. This is possible for the ‘Contracts’, ‘Business Partners’, ‘Products’ and ‘Online Subscriptions’ search form.

Jump out features also ensure a direct integration of our STREAM apps and the Classic Line. There is no loss of information or time when switching between STREAM apps and the Classic Line modules.

If your publishing house uses the Intercompany Publishing Deals STREAM web app to transact business between affiliated companies, you create business partners that represent a company group as an affiliated company. The Classic Line (as of Version 11.0) indicates which business partners are affiliated companies.

You open the STREAM web app Royalty Accounting Manager from the Royalty Recipient module of the Classic Line (as of Version 11.0) to view the data for a particular royalty account. Royalty Accounting Manager opens directly to the ‘Account Detail View’ form if the royalty recipient only has one royalty account and the associated sub-accounts all belong to the same company group. Otherwise, Royalty Accounting Manager opens to the ‘Royalty Accounts’ form and the ‘Account No.’ field is prepopulated with the royalty account number. The system automatically displays the results of this search is the results list.

IAP: country table – automated updates

The ‘Country Table’ is the basic table for checking address data for postal accuracy in the user interface and controls label generation for various batch procedures. It is subject to continuous modifications caused by changes in postal norms and by political events (new countries). As of Version 10.8, Klopotek offers country table updates on a regular basis and in the case of special events as a service to support you. (The country table is updated if your system administrator has configured your system settings accordingly.)

Enhancements of the Classic Line in patch 1 - 2018

IAP – anonymize business partner GDPR-relevant

The amount of data that is generated, transferred and stored around the world every day is on the increase. More than ever, people are conscious of the personal information that is collected about them, and there is a growing desire to have such data deleted from a system, for example, after an order has been fulfilled. You should, and in many cases must, comply with such requests – not least due to changes in data privacy and protection legislation.

The records in the Klopotek system – particularly business partners and addresses – can only be deleted when there are no references to another sub-system, e.g. student, end consumer, royalty recipient, customer, teacher, supplier, licensee, publicity contact, reward product supplier, rights buyer, school, representative or promoter. In these cases, the deletion of individuals would cause unwanted inconsistencies.

As an alternative to deletion, you can now (as of version 10.8) render anonymous the personal information relating to an individual, insofar as this is required by law. In the ‘Business Partner’ module, you select the ‘Anonymize Business Partner’ option for individuals to render their data anonymous so that they can no longer be identified.

The anonymized individuals can still be edited and can be used manually and by batch procedures, web services, and external systems.


IAP: ‘My Tasks’: delete multiple tasks

The ‘My Tasks’ feature allows you to quickly find tasks which are incomplete or which you have delegated. The current tasks are visible to all staff members. Starting with an object (e.g. business partner), you can make an entry in your own personal ‘My Tasks’ list or in another user’s list. You can enter a comment and a due date for each task.

As part of managing tasks, you delete individual tasks or all the tasks that are older than a defined number of days (as of version 11.0). The system displays how many tasks are older than the defined value and, upon confirmation, deletes them from the system. In this way, you can conveniently delete old tasks, without needing to delete each task individually.

Example: If today is the 30 January 2018 and you enter 20 as the number of days, the system calculates the data 10 January 2018 and deletes all the tasks whose due date is prior to this.


Message-Based Services: Change Data Capture as of Oracle 12.2

Klopotek offers a flexible interface structure for communication between different systems: the Message-Based Services (MBS). Their primary task is to send and receive modified data in real-time, with the support of intelligent trigger and processing mechanisms.

For the Message-Based Services, the relevant modifications to data in a database table (Insert, Update, and Delete operations) are captured as follows: up to Oracle version 12.1, the modifications are captured using the Oracle ‘Change Data Capture’ (CDC) feature. This feature is no longer available as of version 12.2. As of Oracle version 12.2, the job of capturing data modifications for the MBS procedures is taken over by the ‘Flashback Data Archive’ (FDA) feature and by additional database functionality (as of version 11.0). This eliminates the extra licensing fees for Oracle’s replacement functionality (Oracle Golden Gate).

Flashback Data Archives don't just provide effective mechanisms for versioning data rec ords, they also protect these versions from modification and, ultimately, delete them after a configurable retention period. Based on the data that is retained in the archives, the additional functionality provided by Klopotek ensures that data modifications are passed to the Message-Based Services.

If you are planning an Oracle upgrade, your System Administrator configures the Flashback Data Archives accordingly. The Klopotek system automatically recognizes which Oracle version you use and captures data modifications for the Message-Based Services using the appropriate method – either CDC or FDA and the Klopotek-specific database functionality.


Web Services: logging of SOAP calls using Log4j

The Klopotek Web Services are used extensively in, for example, the integration of webshops. The Simple Object Access Protocol (SOAP) is used as the network protocol for internal communication. With its help, data is exchanged between the systems and functions are called.

If an error occurs, the requests and responses that are exchanged at the level of the SOAP protocol are critical for the timely, effective analysis of the error. In order to make this information easily accessible, the SOAP calls can now, as of version 10.8, be written to the database as well as to a file. This helps to avoid delays in analyzing issues.

SOAP logging is carried out via Log4j and enabled and disabled dynamically by your System Administrator.


O2C/one-off: additional information regarding the processing status of order lines

Sometimes, when orders for one-off products are processed in the Klopotek Order to Cash (O2C) system, certain order or credit note lines cannot be completely processed by the invoicing procedure. There are numerous reasons for this.

To support your staff in the relevant departments, we provide (as of version 11.0) additional information regarding the processing status which they can access in the ‘Customer Info’ tool. Among other things, this information includes messages that were previously only output to the invoicing log and not displayed in the user interface. (The invoicing log continues to be available as a PDF file.)

In this way, the ‘Customer Info’ tool provides you with a comprehensive overview of the messages that were generated when a customer's order lines were processed and, if necessary, you can take action.


O2C/one-off: electronic dispatch notification per shipping unit

If the Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) process is used, customer orders are imported and the system generates and exports various messages in the form of electronic responses (e.g. credit notes, invoices, and delivery notes).

If electronic responses are transmitted to your customers, they may receive an electronic delivery note with all the products and quantities that have actually been shipped prior to the arrival of the goods (dispatch notification).

Now, as of version 10.8, your customers can also receive this electronic dispatch notification for each shipping unit, allowing them to match it to the shipping unit once it arrives. If, for example, a customer receives multiple shipping units in relation to multiple delivery notes, each shipping unit may contain goods from different delivery notes. With a dispatch notification for each shipping unit, you avoid the additional time and effort required to check the goods delivered against the dispatch notification for the entire shipment.


O2C/One-off: System setting to override price basis in ‘Customer (BSD)’ module with specification in order

In your day-to-day business, it may be necessary to not modify a price defined in an order, although a different price is defined for the customer. For example, an order entered via a web shop should be invoiced for the gross price, even though you have specified that net prices should always be used for the customer (i.e. the sales tax should be subtracted from the gross price when determining price) in the Klopotek O2C – One-off system (‘Customer [BSD]’).  

For each contractor, your system administrator can now, as of version 11.0, specify that a gross price defined in an order should be retained. If this setting is active, the price specification in the order overrides the specification for the customer.


O2C/One-off: delete order import interfaces

The ‘Delete Order Import Interfaces’ batch procedure deletes (as of version 11.0) all the data from the order import interfaces. You use the procedure together with the ‘BSD Order Import from Interface’ batch procedure to empty the interface tables before or after importing new order data (e.g. deletion of imported or erroneous records).


O2C/ASM: show notes on order processing upon offer/order creation

In the advertising business, it is not uncommon for your customers to have special requirements or wishes regarding the processing of their advertising orders. You record information regarding the specifics of order processing for particular customers in the ‘Customer (ASM)’ module. This information is critical to the creation and processing of orders in the Klopotek Advertising Sales and Management system (ASM).

Via the system settings, your system administrator now (as of version 10.8) specifies whether this information is brought to your attention whenever you create an offer or order for an advertiser and/or agency with special requirements. This ensures that you always have all the information you require to create and process orders correctly in accordance with your customers' requirements.


TEP/Products: copy data from the current edition

When creating new edition in the ‘Products’ module, you specify the edition-specific data areas (e.g. specifications) that will be copied from the current edition to the new edition in the ‘New Edition’ window.

In the same manner as when you create a new version, your system administrator specifies now, as of version 11.0, for each checkbox in the ‘Copy’ group box whether it is active by default and whether users can modify it.

This reduces the amount of input required from users, because, as a rule, the default settings do not need to be modified. In addition, it prevents changes to the default settings for data areas that should always or never be copied to the new edition.


TEP/Production: ownership – determination of the tax model and tax country

In the Klopotek system, ‘ownership’ supports the organization of companies in a matrix. Matrix organizational structures operate with legal entities on the one hand and organizational entities on the other.

While a legal entity (ownership) has a standard currency and a company code, an organizational entity serves to define general processes and organizational structures.

In the ‘Production’ module, ownership defines the standard currency for cost calculations, invoices, and supplier orders.

If ownership mode is active, the system determines the tax model and the tax country to be used for tax calculation in the extended calculation (‘Production’ module) based on the ownership instead of the company-group-dependent fiscal data (as of version 11.0 and if you have a license for the ‘Multi Operating Company Capability’).


Selection: selection results – manually add/remove addresses

The ‘Selection’ module assists you in preparing and realizing marketing activities and campaigns. On the basis of target group attributes, individual marketing profiles provide lists of addresses that you want to contact as part of your marketing activity. Each profile provides an address list for further processing, for example, for use in serial letters or an email promotion.

You can view the address list for a profile at any time and, if you wish (as of version 10.8), manually add addresses or remove addresses. As a result, you can freely define your final target group. First, you select all the available addresses with certain attributes, and then you can edit this set of addresses manually.


Selection: selection results – enrichment via data sources

In addition to the addresses that you have identified via a marketing selection, other information from the Klopotek system is of great value for your reporting or marketing activities.

Based on the selected addresses, the system retrieves information regarding advertising orders placed with your company or your competitors, and the classifications assigned to the selected business partners. Using the processing type ‘Data source’, you can now, as of version 10.8, export this information for external downstream processing.