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Multiple E-Commerce sites supported by a

By cnathan ·
I am in the anlysis/study phase of designing a database for 4 different Eduation companies(institutions) for their E-commerce.

We have initially been considering 4 different database and thereby applications to support these. That would be thequickest way to produce some kind of data model (with the time frames they expect to see the site up and running). Now we have some requirements only from 1 of these companies. So our initial design has to go with these. But now there has been a strong opposition to this approach from the management. They want a single database repository(Oracle 8i) and a single application to support these 4 Sci Ed companies. These 4 companies will of-course have a diffent customized look and feel for thier Web sites, but the functioanlity, will be very much the same.
The companies will have different product sets and therefore different product attributes to begin with.
Could you kindly shed intelligence as to what approach I could take.

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Multiple E-Commerce sites supported by a

by anrao In reply to Multiple E-Commerce sites ...

Have you evaluated IBM's net.commerce suite of tools?

You can have one or more repositories at the back end (Oracle or DB2 - both are supported)and have a common look at feel front end, if you want. It is your choice really.

Also, you can set-up like an online mall kind of environemnt where you have a common place to look for all Sci Ed companies, from where customers can choose the specific company they want.

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Multiple E-Commerce sites supported by a

by cnathan In reply to Multiple E-Commerce sites ...

Thanks for the insight to the IBM product.

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Multiple E-Commerce sites supported by a

by lee_s_young In reply to Multiple E-Commerce sites ...

This sounds more like a people problem, rather than a technical question?

There appear to be multiple perspectives at play here. Your management would like to minimize the licensing, maintenance and long-term cost of ownership issues, which is why they have opted for a very flexible and scaleable repository; Oracle 8i.

Its understandable that the individual companies want THEIR processes, running THEIR way. Although all 4 companies are fundamentally similar, they won't see it that way, and will resent any attempt to "standardize" them into one repository model... unless they can see the value of such an approach.

In this circumstance, I would advise actively engaging all 4 companies in a high level requirements-gathering exercise. You need to understand the differences in all 4 value models before you can start picking the technology solution. I'm concerned that only one company has so far supplied requirements, as this sounds like a lack of buy-in from three of the sponsors?

You have to get all four sponsors "singing from the same hymn sheet", even if there are differences of opinion at the detailed design level. It's OK for them to want to retain some differences, as both Oracle and the IBM product set mentioned provide a lot of support for meta-modeling and information repository process partitioning.

If you can get broad agreement from all four sponsors to a meta-model of the key e-business processes, then you can pick and choose between costs and benefits for one repository, 4 linked DBs, or whatever.

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Multiple E-Commerce sites supported by a

by cnathan In reply to Multiple E-Commerce sites ...

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Multiple E-Commerce sites supported by a

by cnathan In reply to Multiple E-Commerce sites ...

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