The client is one of North America’s largest private companies and is an established leader in the petroleum marketing and fuel supply industries. Founded in 1957, the client provides comprehensive fuel supply, distribution, delivery, and dispensing solutions to customers through an integrated network of refiners, terminals, carriers, and retailers throughout North America delivering more than two billion gallons of fuel every year to clients throughout the continental United States.
The client aimed at simplifying the fuel supply and logistics. They were acknowledged as a trusted partner for the organizations in overcoming their challenges of energy procurement, logistics and supply.
To maintain their leadership in providing innovative solution for energy procurement, supply and logistics challenges they were seeking an IT services partner to keep them consistent and competent in market.
JK Technosoft revolutionized their IT landscape and simplifying their fuel supply and logistics across North America by improving services, quality and cost-efficiency in the past 10 years and has been successfully providing flexible and agile solutions that are aligned with disruptions in technology.
I have found JKT to be a professional and flexible partner in providing reliable, strong technical consultants and the associated resourcing processes which retain domain and application knowledge. JKT have proved to be a true partner who understands our business and our changing business circumstances. JKT have always been there and willing to share the risk to overcome each business challenge.
– The client
The client’ legacy systems and manual means to implement business processes were inefficient and occasionally faulty to address the ever-changing demand of fuel supply and logistics with the changing times. Improvising customer satisfaction and offering real-time visibility of mission critical information was desired for proactive decision-making.
The entire IT landscape demanded a revamp. The challenges faced across different technological areas:
1. Dot Net
Earlier, the client was using third-party Transportation Management System (TMS) to optimize freight cost and making route/shipment, which did not allow to track changes with accuracy which was affecting freight, supply and operations. In addition, there was no control over the master/transactional data update in the current system.
The authorization and authentication were scattered across multiple systems and hence a single change would affect all the applications and made the process more cumbersome. The performance and scalability of the legacy desktop-based progress application needed improvement in order to fulfil entire business need for all their trading partners of purchase and sell fuel.
2. eFuel-Cutoff Migration
Client used an another system called eFuel that ran on legacy technologies and has several drawbacks e.g. Implementation of new business model was hard on top of existing application, slow performance and bugs.
Since the existing platform had too many business applications, the migration was planned in segments so as to not affect the whole business and keep running old and new applications side by side.
It gave rise to another issue as invoicing and transaction processing spanned over multiple apps between old and new model. This was time consuming for business as they had to do setups in both old and new system and both the system required data and application maintenance.
The complex IT systems were based on a number of bespoke applications and enterprise technologies to run their various lines of service. They desired an interface with customers, vendors, partners and suppliers for seamless order processing and fulfilment through integration with all external applications, with ERP systems of customers, vendors and suppliers.
4. MSBI-SSRS Reporting
Single Reporting Portal was desired to ensure that all orders are visible and report categorization can be performed based on user’s preference such as accounting, sales etc while handling cross reference of same master available in legacy systems.
5. MSBI-ETL, Data Warehouse
Mapping and migrating legacy data to Entinuum system, B2B network created to handle vast amounts of transactional and operational data shared daily throughout the energy sector.
There was a huge volume of data in the legacy system and reports were generated based on the schema of new system. Therefore, the legacy transactional and master data have to be transferred into that system so that data analysis can be carried out from single source of data. Database Schema was different for both the systems so it was a big challenge to pull data from legacy system and fit into the schema of current system.
MOC was looking for a collaborative platform where files and documents can be exchanged between various users of department and their respective customers. In addition, client was looking for a rich look and feel for their SharePoint onPrem portal with responsive design, to offer their customer mobile and tablet view.
Another requirement was to access all their Reports, dot Net and Progress applications from a single location (SharePoint onPrem portal) with single sign on feature. MOC also sought for a cloud-based solution with minimal development effort to support multiple database (online and onPrem) for their few processes such as Order placement automation system, Onboarding system etc.
The below solutions were provided for different technological areas for overcoming the challenges:
1. Legacy Modernization
- Modernization of legacy Progress application (Fuel All) to web based .Net application with single sign on (SSO), Authorization, Authentication (AnA framework) and service-based framework called Entinuum to fulfil DEF (Diesel Exhaust Fluid), LTL (Less than a Truckload or Tank Wagon) and FTL (Full Truck Load) business requirement.
- Entinuum provided unified authentication, order entry, invoicing/billing interface for all their business models e.g. DEF LTL etc.
- Developed an own web based .net solution ‘Route builder’ to optimize freight cost and making route/shipment with the help of Microsoft bing map API. It helped operations team to plan, schedule and dispatch the deliveries which are part of the shipments.
- Developed “MOTS” a web based .net generic solution to track changes which can be integrated to any application across the Entinuum.
- Developed “Governance/Workflow” a web based .net generic solution for effective governance and control over the Master data objects and transactional objects. It can be integrated with any process with minor tweaks.
- Deployments of new feature is smooth using CI/CD integration. Code base is organised and maintained in source version control which was not the case with the legacy system.
2. eFuel-Cutoff Migration
- Entinuum was initially designed for their new business Model called “DEF”. Later, LTL was migrated on this new system to take advantage of new functionality and smooth processing of transactions and invoices. Entinuum was built on latest .net technologies and has an easy path for upgradation to latest technology.
- All the new features which were needed for the FTL business were not feasible on the old platform and were planned in Entinuum along with migration so as to keep one single system across the organisation for better performance, manageability and productivity.
- FTL is the biggest part of the business model which is being migrated to Entinuum. Once all the apps were migrated, eFuel was cut-off and all their transaction processing would be using the new platform.
3. Service Oriented Architecture Based on BizTalk
JK Technosoft developed a SOA based BizTalk Scheduling engine called Entinuum information pipeline (EIP) to integrate different type of invoices/fuel order documents format with diverse platform which was fully configurable by business users.
4. MSBI-SSRS Reporting
We developed a SSRS based reporting portal to migrate the Legacy Crystal Report and create new SSRS Report and Dashboards, charts and visualization.
5. MSBI-ETL, Data Warehouse
- A solution was provided as an extended arm with MOC SQL team.
- SSIS packages were created to read master data from Legacy into the new system for creating cross references.
- ETL was implemented for data flow logic to fit the legacy transactional data into the new system and eventually move it to the data warehouse.
- Build cubes and power pivots on top of the data warehouse to cater the data analytics to business users.
6. SharePoint Online Portal
- JKT designed a responsive SharePoint onPrem portal with SharePoint 2019 multi-tier architecture, in order to develop a collaborative platform, with no configuration error including transfer of all old data and records without data loss and with zero downtime.
- We introduced a security token based on Single Sign On process using iframe in SharePoint 2019 portal to access all MOC reports, dot Net and Progress applications from a single location.
- SharePoint online portal was configured for MOC for their internal processes such as on-boarding process, data sharing among company users etc.
- With the support of Power Automation and various connectors, gateways and graph APIs, we had used Power Apps to connect with various DBs and Office 365 users for cloud based automation process.
- We have also integrated few external applications like Google Analytics, Chat bot etc. for site usage reporting purpose and to provide real time support to MOC customer.
Fig: Solution Architecture for Entinuum
- Automate Order Processing and fulfilment process.
- Integration with all third party applications.
- Modernized the legacy platform.
- Reduction in backlogs.
- Improved operational efficiency of the business by 40%.
- Improved customer satisfaction and user experience.
- Significant improvement in value for money by utilizing JKT global delivery model.
- The solution provided met all the quality standards.
- The Solution provided a strong and secure IT and network infrastructure in a highly modern ODC.
- There were significant improvement in software development processes and overall software quality.