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Maximo and Dynamics Ax 2009 integration

Posted on 2011-02-23
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Have any of you done integration between maximo and dynamics ax 2009 ? Was this a simple integration ?

I 'm currently looking for a plant maintenance solution to replace maximo . Our ERP system is AX 2009. What are your recommendations ?

I have the option of going with a add on designed for MS Dynamics AX 2009 or
I have the option of integrating/upgrading my current maximo install and integrating it with Dynamics AX.

All comments, suggestions and links are welcome

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Question by:smjaleel
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Steve Endow earned 250 total points
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Hi,

Although not quite the same as AX, I have done an integration between Maximo and Dynamics GP.  I can't speak to the value of the Maximo solution, only to the process of integrating with it.

My client wanted to send all vendor information from Dynamics GP to Maximo, so I developed an export of any new or changed vendors to CSV files that Maximo then imported.

They also wanted to send journal entries from Maximo to GP, so the Maximo consultant exported CSV files for journal entries that I imported into GP.

Last, they wanted to sent inventory transactions from Maximo to GP, so I imported CSV files into GP to adjust inventory.

For my project, all of the interface / integration work was custom.  I believe Maximo has some type of integration tool / workbench that is used to import and export data, and that seemed to be pretty flexible, but it took quite a few tweaks and tricks to get the data in a format that would work for GP.  And on the GP side, I used a custom .NET eConnect integration to import all transactions, and a simple query and CSV export to send vendor data.  I had full flexibility of .NET to do whatever I needed on the import--I'm not sure what your options are for AX.

It took a while to design the integrations with the Maximo consultant, as Maximo has a completely different design than GP.  i.e. a transaction in Maximo is structured completely differently than a similar transaction in GP.  So we worked together to figure out how to convert the data so that GP could understand it.

Overall, it was a relatively smooth integration.  The Maximo consultant I worked with was very knowledgeable and we worked very well together.  

The one thing that I would caution you about is estimating and budgeting the integration project.  The development went pretty smoothly, but testing the integrations was much more time consuming than we anticipated.  Specific transactions had to be created in Maximo by the consultant or end users, then exported, then imported to GP, then reviewed.  If we needed to make a change, we had to do another full round of testing.   If you have one person that knows how to process the transactions in Maximo and then run the import and then review the data in GP, that will save alot of time--but that may not be realistic.

In case you are evaluating Maximo vendors, the Maximo consultant I worked with was originally with Stearns & Wheeler GHD (ghd.com), but is now with Barton & Loguidice (http://bartonandloguidice.com).  

Thanks,

Steve Endow
Dynamics GP Certified Trainer
Dynamics GP Certified Professional
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by:quale-kaizen
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I am not acquainted with Maximo, but AX has plenty of options for integration.  
You can start with a less sophisticated approach, and than upgrade your process through continuous integration. For example you can start with data import from CSV files. This will give you a taste for the data you need to export and import. Then you can design a custom solution to do all these things automatically.

It's up to you to choose the tools that fit best your needs. Below you will find a brief description of the different tools for integration that AX has to offer.


1) AIF

The Application Integration Framework works well, but could be an overkill for simple things.
AIF has 3 adapters for Web Services, file-system files, and BizTalk.


2)  Business Connector

You can use the Microsoft Dynamics AX Business Connector to write a .Net application to do CRUD operations inside AX. Although, the entire application will be written in a .Net language like C# or VB, the developer implementing this should have sound knowledge of AX and its DB scheme.


3) Batch jobs

In AX you can use batch jobs to periodically import/export data. You can create AX batch jobs in the  X++  language, and then use the AX UI to schedule the execution times and intervals. The benefit of this is that the batch jobs can be scheduled to run during the night and no operator (or user session) is required.


4) Standard import/export of flat files.

You can use the standard import/export functionality in AX to import/export flat files, CSV, and .xls files. AX also provides data conversion options for data mapping, but this may require X++ code for the mapping. With small modifications the standard data import groups can be used for the import the different production journals.


5) Custom solution

You can use custom X++ code to read the new transactions from Maximo's DB and automatically import them into a journal inside AX. In order to avoid glitches it is good idea to have a human to verify and post the journal.


BR,
QK
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by:mlmcc
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This question has been classified as abandoned and is being closed as part of the Cleanup Program. See my comment at the end of the question for more details.
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