Aurora EDI Alliance Press ~ Volume 5 Issue 3 ~ December 5, 2016

Welcome Note

Welcome to the fall/winter newsletter of 2016. In case this is your first newsletter, if you'd like to read previous issues, you can find them on our website here.  The Aurora EDI Alliance Press is a quarterly newsletter dedicated to current issues, events, education and newsworthy items surrounding both EDI technology and the Aurora EDI Alliance. We would welcome any feedback from our readers on how to improve it. The Aurora EDI Alliance is a tightly knit group of U.S. companies specializing in the implementation and maintenance of Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) in a variety of industries.  We are recognized experts in EDI, and can provide consulting, system analysis, design, development and training services as well as software implementation services.

Support Procedures

Just a quick reminder of our support procedures.  In the event that you need support, please e-mail or call us using the contact information below based on the nature of your problem.  In your e-mail or phone message, provide us with your name and contact information, the Severity Level, and a brief description of the problem,  Provided you use the proper communication channels as provided below we will respond as follows during our normal support hours:

Severity Level One (production down) issues will be responded to within one hour
Severity Level Two (critical) issues will be responded to within 4 hours
Severity Level Three (minor) issues will be responded to within one business day

We will determine if support is billable or non-billable in accordance with your Software Maintenance Agreement, if applicable.

Support Hours:

Monday through Friday

8 am eastern to 5 pm pacific


Software 800-404-9182 x41

VAN 800-404-9182 x40

Athena 800-404-9182 x40

Easy Trade 800-404-9182 x40

Customer Spotlight

Founded in 2011 in Somerville, MA, Cambridge Select has quickly become a top Amazon Marketplace seller, receiving the Amazon Holiday Top Seller award in 2012.  Started by MIT graduates and together, with a strong buying and marketing team, they offer a unique assortment of footwear and apparel, competitive prices and unprecedented quality.  Cambridge Select takes pride in the unique demographic of their customer and offers an assortment that reflects their unique, individual style and fuels their variety of passions.  Whether it be a night out on the town or an outdoor adventure, their customer embodies a diversified, well rounded lifestyle.  Combining the utilization of machine learning algorithms, analytics and with their knowledge up of to the minute trends, they truly have fashion down to a science.  The company has experienced significant growth over its lifetime. They ranked #97 in the Inc. 500 fastest growing private companies in the US in their 2016 list released this August  Learn more about them on their website or follow them on Facebook and alternatively, you can contact them via email at

ECS 8 Has Been Released

This last summer, Liaison Technologies quietly released ECS 8.  The last major release was back in 2013 so this is overdue.  We had the privilege of viewing a demo and we are super excited about the latest features Liaison has added.  Just a few of the many new features include...

  • API and UI have been opened up for Lite installations of ECS
  • AS2 restart setting have been added to the HTTP Output Channel
  • SHA384 and SHA512 have been added to HTTP Path Input and SMTP Input
  • FTP Client Input will now properly initialize the Custom IP setting
  • Data View will now include the batch size (in bytes)
  • Data Viewing is now queryable
  • FTP and SFTP channel parallelism settings, as well as the tracking panel will now properly display in Chrome

Who is the Aurora EDI Alliance?

For next few newsletters, we will be doing short bios on each Aurora EDI Alliance team member. For this one, we are featuring Shandra Locken, Aurora's Sales & Marketing Manager.

linkedin2.jpgUp next in the Aurora Team Biography Series is Aurora's Sales and Marketing Manager, Shandra Locken.  Shandra first arrived in the EDI world in the spring of 2008, not knowing how to spell EDI.  With the help of her colleagues, she was quoting VAN services and Liaison's Athena web-based EDI solution within a few weeks.  Had you asked her 20 years ago if she thought she would be selling EDI services someday, she would have said, "What is EDI?"  That is always the first question as you may have learned from our blog.  It's our most viewed blog article ever.

Shandra was approached by Aurora while managing school fundraisers for the American Heart Association.  Although it was a great cause and she loved working with children, having recently married and about to start a family, she ultimately decided that the required traveling was no longer feasible for her.  Learning the EDI industry was at times very overwhelming and scary, but with the help of her manager and colleagues, she eventually settled in.  As the Sales and Marketing Manager, Shandra is primarily responsible for sales, managing our relationship with Liaison Technologies, as we are one of their biggest resellers, and maintaining our marketing content and automation including our website, blog, newsletters and social media.  All these years later, she notes that she cannot imagine doing anything else and feels fortunate to work with this incredible team of people.  

On a personal note, she is the mother of five year old twin girls and just celebrated nine years of marriage.  In her free time (which isn't much), she is active in her twin club, Paradise Valley Mothers of Multiples, sells jewelry on Etsy and writes emergency medical grant success stories for the Ian Somerhalder Foundation (ISF) website.  ISF's mission is to "...empower, educate and collaborate with people and projects to positively impact the planet and its creatures."  Since the emergency medical grant program was launched in February of 2014, ISF has given grants to 581 agencies and has helped 1,236 animals in need of emergency medical care.  Being an animal lover, the grant program is a cause near and dear to her heart.  When asked how she wants to be remembered, she says, "A good mother, a good wife, a good person - someone who stood up for what was right and advocated for others when necessary."

Blog Highlight - Purchase Order Confirmation Rates: Navigating Amazon's New Chargebacks

Amazon recently announced a new type of chargeback that will initially impact Hardlines’ Vendor Central suppliers. While this might not seem to apply to you or your other trading relationships today, Amazon more and more (like Walmart in the past) is a bellwether when it comes to making demands on suppliers. The never ceasing effort to bring customers robust selection at competitive prices in a hurry puts the responsibility squarely on distributors and manufacturers to fill orders and maintain proper levels of inventory to support demand.

Your purchase order confirmation rate is the rate at which you accept or backorder the units ordered. Amazon is looking for your PO Acknowledgement (POA or EDI 855) to accept or backorder at least 80% of the quantity for each item they order. Failure to do so will result... Read more

Technical Terminology Time

B2B, B2C, B2G - These are fairly common terms in the EDI industry and in supply chain in general.  They refer to who your customer is primarily.  A B2B is a company that sells to other companies.  The Aurora EDI Alliance is a good example of a B2B.  A B2C is a company is that sells to the consumer.  Any retail store such as Walmart or Nordstrom is a good example of a B2C.  In some cases a company could be a B2B AND a B2C, such as Costco or Sam's Club.  Lastly, a B2G is a company that sells to government entities.  B2G companies will often use centralized websites to sell to the government.  Pricing and/or contracts are pre-negotiated when dealing with the government in most cases.  And again, many companies can be both B2G AND B2B at the same time, and even all three, depending on the type of company.

Winter Fun Facts

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Photo appears courtesy of David Sorich.

  • According to The Weather Channel, pumpkin is the most craved food in the fall, hence the pumpkin spice craze we start seeing on September 1st.
  • Catching falling leaves is supposed to bring good luck - each leaf caught translates to one month of good fortune.
  • Contrary to prevailing logic, the earth is actually closest to the sun in the winter.
  • Reindeer that live in the Artic Circle have evolutionarily adapted to see better in the dark due to a small area of tissue behind their retina.