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Integrating an Automated Fax Solution with SAP ERP


The Company:

Headquartered in Franklin Park, Illinois, Sloan Valve Company is the world’s leading manufacturer of commercial plumbing systems. The company provides public restroom solutions such as flush valves, electronic faucets, and soap dispensing systems. With more than 100 years of experience, Sloan Valve is still pioneering the plumbing industry through its innovative, environmentally-responsible business practices from fixture design to plant operations.

The Problem:

The inconsistent performance of Sloan Valve’s existing automated fax solution caused many obstacles and inefficiency. According to Michael Buff, IT Data Center Supervisor, fax servers went down so often that customers often called Sloan Valve to see if their purchase orders were received. If purchase orders were missing, a Sloan user would submit a help desk ticket, then technicians would check servers and troubleshoot the errors. The majority of the problems were resolved by resetting all the devices, reestablishing fax queues, and re-queueing the failed jobs back through the system. “There were times when I would manually refill the queue and resend the faxes back out, and that was a nightmare” says Buff. The IT team even created a maintenance schedule to monitor the servers every Sunday to make sure the fax queues were clear for the upcoming work week. “We’d have to make sure that everything went through properly, and it was basically a waiting game.”

It became clear that Sloan Valve needed a reliable solution, but they had strict requirements: the faxing solution had to integrate with SAP, offer the ability to batch fax documents, and receive acknowledgements directly into the system. Business users also needed the solution to work with Microsoft Exchange, integrate with existing Canon multifunction printers, and offer the ability to support fax over internet protocol (FoIP). In addition, Sloan placed a high priority on excellent product support.

The Solution:

Identifying an opportunity to solve Sloan Valve’s business need, STR Software performed a thorough proof-of-concept demonstrating AventX Connector for SAP ERP in Sloan Valve’s environment. The trial was a success, and Sloan fully implemented the new automated faxing solution shortly thereafter. In the years since their original purchase, Sloan has maintained their investment in AventX with multiple upgrades as it continues to bring value to their operations.

Not only has Sloan Valve seen a significant decrease in help desk tickets for failed faxes, their users are also happy with the flexibility to avoid physical fax machines and fax right from their desktop – saving ample time. Buff claims there have been no complaints from users since the AventX implementation, “It’s been bulletproof! We’ve had no issues other than the occasional faxes that don’t go through, but we find those are from an issue on the other end.”

Sloan Valve leverages STR Software’s guidance and support to ensure AventX Connector for SAP ERP remains a dependable, optimized solution. To date, Sloan Valve has experienced flawless faxing capabilities with AventX. “This is by far the best one available in the market!” says Buff. “The thing I like about AventX is that once it’s set in stone, you don’t have to touch it – one less thing I have to worry about on the weekends.”

STR Software specializes in document delivery solutions for email, fax, internet fax, and print. The AventX Product Suite integrates with ERP applications including Oracle EBS, SAP, PeopleSoft, JD Edwards, SunGard and internally-developed solutions in UNIX, Linux and MPE environments.


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