Modernized Applications Can Help Build Agility into Your Data Exchange Environments

4 min read

IBM Sterling Data Exchange offers modernized capabilities that build agility into B2B integration and managed file transfer environments.

The past few years have provided a new understanding of just how interconnected the world is right now. Global supply chains have been disrupted, impacting people and companies that manufacture goods and deliver them to warehouses, shops or directly to customers. While most focus on rising costs of living, it also affects the types and amounts of goods available and how quickly they reach shop shelves.

As supply chains recover and prepare to deal with these challenges, data volumes and complexities are growing multifold. The recent IDC report on Worldwide B2B and MFT forecast indicates that agility is displacing productivity as a top business objective, driving companies to an external focus that requires better integration and data exchange across ecosystems.

The importance of modern applications for exchanging data

If your organization is like most, your B2B integration and managed file transfer environment is a mix of legacy and modern applications deployed across traditional and hybrid infrastructure that you have skillfully architected to support your business needs. How you govern these business-critical applications and provide visibility to the underlying data exchanges and the flow of file-based information becomes increasingly important. As important as it is for these files to be transferred reliably and securely, it is also crucial for the enterprise to strictly govern their file transfer within and across organizational boundaries.

As an integration lead or file transmissions services owner, imagine you get a call asking about the status of a critical file that didn’t arrive on time. Chances are, you don’t have the visibility you need to provide quick and accurate answers. You drop whatever high-priority task you’re working on and try to piece together information to respond since your business depends on it. Your business relies on you to track such information because they might not have self-serve capabilities. This can be challenging and inefficient, but there is a better way.

How IBM Sterling Control Center provides visibility of critical file transfers

A solution that can centrally track the status of the data exchanges (including failures) while enabling broader teams to monitor their specific data flows independently would be a lifesaver. IBM Sterling Control Center Monitor is the solution to help your organization track critical file transfers and events across your data exchange environments for enhanced B2B governance. It helps you to implement business policies and, in turn, alert your personnel when a policy is violated to ensure that your SLA’s and overall security posture aren’t hampered.

The IBM Sterling Control Center Monitor solution has helped thousands of enterprises worldwide gain complete control and visibility into the transfer of sensitive corporate data across networks. Data that is orchestrated through IBM Sterling Data exchange solutions like B2B integrator, File Gateway, Connect:Direct and Transformation Extender Advanced can be governed via Control Center, but it’s not just limited to these applications. Control Center Monitor can also monitor third-party file transfer solutions, including FTP servers. This truly makes it one-stop-shop for all your visibility and governance needs.

Beginning in 2019, we also expanded Control Center capabilities to include advanced configuration and deployment management for large Connect:Direct footprint in the form of a separate product called Sterling Control Center Director (CCD). With CCD, you can simplify and automate lifecycle management of Connect:Direct installations, saving significant time and money while reducing security exposures.

New releases for the IBM Sterling solutions build agility into your data exchange environment

On November 8, 2022, we announced our new releases for IBM Sterling Control Center Monitor and Director 6.3.  Version 6.3 delivers a modernized Web UI experience that unifies product capabilities and delivers improvements in usability, efficiency and security. We also released another Sterling solution component: the Sterling External Authentication Server (SEAS) 6.1 release with modernized web user interface (see the announcement here). SEAS is a critical component for the IBM Sterling Data Exchange portfolio, providing advanced authentication options, often deployed alongside Sterling Secure Proxy. Key functionalities like multifactor authentication and third-party identity provider integration are powered by SEAS.

Both these releases are radically different from their predecessors, delivering high value to your enterprise by enabling independent access that promotes a self-service approach. With a centralized, modern web console, existing and new users of Control Center and SEAS are empowered to do more with less administrative hand-holding. It will lead to wider adoption and proactiveness in terms of how operations are managed today. Modern web user interfaces running on latest browsers are more secure than traditional thick consoles while also being much more user friendly. These enhancements accelerate time to value with a high degree of adoption and automation built in, saving tons of time in troubleshooting issues, especially by catching failures proactively.

Learn more

IBM Sterling Control Center 6.3 and SEAS 6.1 releases are a testament to IBM’s continued investment to accelerate modernization of our data exchange portfolio. In addition to modernization investments to web user interfaces, we’re also improving support for modern, container-based hybrid cloud deployments and API-driven integrations.

Sterling Data Exchange applications are trusted by thousands of enterprises worldwide. Our solutions are leveraged to power the critical data exchanges across industry verticals, including Banking, Federal, Manufacturing, Retail, Healthcare and Insurance.

IBM Sterling Data Exchange is here to help accelerate your business successes as we all journey towards a new normal. See the websites for IBM Sterling Control Center Monitor and IBM Sterling Control Center Director to learn more.

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