Siebel COM-Based Interface

An Innovative Alternative to EIM
Siebel eBusiness Application provides an inbuilt solution to enable bi-directional batch data integration using the Siebel Enterprise Integration Manager (EIM). It interfaces with Siebel’s Data Objects layer reading and writing bulk data in and out of the Siebel database via the Siebel interface tables. With some amount of administration and additional interface tables Siebel EIM offers a popular out-of-thebox solution. This paper explores an alternative method of secure data loading which leverages the flexibility and maintainability of using Siebel VB COM objects.

Siebel COM Based Interface – An Innovative Alternative to EIM



Sridhar has been leading various Siebel projects for key clients. He holds a Masters degree in Business Administration. Siebel COM Based Interface – An Innovative Alternative to EIM 1 TATA CONSULTANCY SERVICES .About the Author P Sridhar Sridhar has been working as a CRM consultant with TCS for more than 4 years.

An Alternative Approach to EIM 4. Implementation Steps 6. Introduction 2. Required Setup for Implementing Scenario 5. Conclusion 3 3 4 5 6 7 7 Siebel COM Based Interface – An Innovative Alternative to EIM 2 TATA CONSULTANCY SERVICES .Table of Contents 1. Siebel EIM 3. Other Alternatives 7.

Data flow in EIM is shown in the figure below. Siebel eBusiness Application provides an inbuilt solution to enable bi-directional batch data integration using the Siebel Enterprise Integration Manager (EIM) to interface with Siebel’s Data Objects layer. Siebel EIM Siebel EIM manages the bidirectional exchange of data between the Siebel databases and other corporate databases. This enables reading and writing bulk data in and out of the Siebel database via the Siebel interface tables. Direct modification of Siebel base tables is not supported because there is a high risk of corrupting the data integrity since the logical relationships that exist within the Siebel base tables are many and complex. Siebel VB provides for in-built methods and functions to invoke Siebel objects through the COM interface and act much like the data entry via the user interface. While EIM offers an out of the box solution to the batch data integration needs. it demands overheads in terms of administering and maintaining additional interface tables. EIM transports the data between the interface tables and the base tables. Siebel COM Based Interface – An Innovative Alternative to EIM 3 TATA CONSULTANCY SERVICES . This exchange of information is accomplished through intermediary (interface) tables called EIM tables. there is still a need for rich data integration with the back-office systems.Introduction One of the greatest information management challenges facing any organization is to maintain a consistent 360-degree view of the customer. The Siebel database contains Siebel interface tables and Siebel base tables. These invocations are achieved through a program external to the Siebel application. Even though there are several applications for managing customer relationships or a CRM suite like Siebel eBusiness Applications. The EIM tables act as a staging area between the Siebel application database and other databases. Any SQL ancillary program utility can be used to transport the data to/from the interface tables from/to a non-Siebel database. The focus of this paper is to explore Siebel VB Scripting using COM Interface as an alternative approach for secure data loading into the Siebel Database.

An Alternative Approach To EIM Siebel COM Data Control interface allows external applications to access remote Siebel Business objects. Receiving data from multiple sources through a standard automated process for data consolidation is a very common requirement for many organizations. This can be loaded onto the Siebel database after applying all the necessary validations and business rules. campaign questionnaires. It also provides bi-directional access to Siebel Business Object Layer through Siebel COM methods. The figure below shows how external applications use Siebel COM Data Control to communicate with the Siebel application. Hence it ensures uniform data interactions through User Interface and data load. third party feed. Consider a scenario where an organization has multiple sources of data (such as external purchased lists. Siebel COM Based Interface – An Innovative Alternative to EIM 4 TATA CONSULTANCY SERVICES . It refers the Siebel database through the Siebel Business Layer just like the Siebel User Interface layer. The format of data varies with the source.) to be loaded in to Siebel. A sample implementation scenario is considered for explaining this alternate (usage of Siebel VB) approach. Siebel VB can act as a bidirectional application interface because Siebel supports the usage of Siebel VB to carry out Data manipulation. web forms etc.

Map the data feed columns to Siebel Business Component Fields in the Standard format. flexible and sustainable design. The VB program scans through these tables to determine the entities to be processed. The target Business Objects. ftp site and database should be defined in an external text file (. This provides a reusable. Login parameters for Siebel application. Design a Standard format (for example. if any.Required Setup for Implementing Scenario 1. Enhancements to include additional entities and fields can be done without any code change. Designate a secured ftp site with separate folders for different sources to receive the data files. Business Components and field mappings are defined here. 5. Create database tables to store Siebel Business Object/Siebel Business Component entity mappings (BO Table) and the Siebel Business Component/Business Component field entity mappings (BC Table).ini file) or in the registry or in a database table. Apply Business Rules. Siebel COM Based Interface – An Innovative Alternative to EIM 5 TATA CONSULTANCY SERVICES . Hence the same generic program can be used for different applications or instances by changing the parameters externally. 4. As the data/entity mappings are stored in the database. the super user (instead of a developer) can take care of future changes in the business requirements. Write a VB program using COM Data control technique for loading data from the standard format data file to Siebel database using the mappings defined in the above tables. These tables will be the driving force for the complete loading process. All input parameters such as cfg file name. an MS Excel file) as superset of columns and data from all data sources. 2. and schedule the VB program as required. 6. 3.

Siebel COM Based Interface – An Innovative Alternative to EIM 6 TATA CONSULTANCY SERVICES .Implementation Steps The flow diagram given below explains the program flow using a single record example.

6. 3.Program Flow for Single Record 1. 8. 7. updating an existing record or creating a new record for the BC.The list of mandatory fields is retrieved for each of the Business Components and the data feed records with not null values in all the mandatory columns will undergo duplication check with the Siebel DB before it is processed further. Load Report would be generated from the Load Log and Error Log table or file. 4.The list of business components for the first BO is retrieved from the BC Table. would be entered into the Load Log Table or the Load log file. etc. Note: Records from the data feed having null valued mandatory columns will be rejected and entered in the Error log table or the error log file. using the mapping defined in the BC Table. Siebel COM Based Interface – An Innovative Alternative to EIM 7 TATA CONSULTANCY SERVICES . The program obtains the set of parameters from the parameters file/database table. 2.Details of loading such as total count of records. Data feed files are downloaded from the pre-defined ftp location and are converted into a pre-defined standard format. 5.Processing starts with retrieving the list of Business Objects to be invoked from the BO Table in the order of the sequence number. Data is read from the standard format file and stored in an array (for example. For example. Data Array). count of rejected records.

Data loading is direct (that is. from a flat or . Workflows and EAI. eScripts have their own methods to invoke Siebel objects to do data validation and manipulation. variety and velocity of data loading is high. eScripting is not recommended when the volume. However. Conclusion EIM offers an innovative. secure.Comparison Between Siebel VB And EIM Other Alternatives Other than Siebel VB. scalable and robust method to import or export bulk data. optimizes cross platform business processes by adhering to a standards-based architecture that needs to be factored in before any given choice is made. Siebel COM Based Interface – An Innovative Alternative to EIM 8 TATA CONSULTANCY SERVICES .XML file) without going through intermediate staging tables. Implementation teams need to weigh the advantages and disadvantages on a case-by-case basis before arriving at the final decision. ensures ease of deployment. data imports can also be handled through custom eScripts using Business Services. Siebel VB reduces complexity.

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