Case study

Go Outdoors

Go Outdoors is the UK’s leading adventure clothing retailer with over 50 stores nationwide.

Up until 2014, systems integration was processed through bespoke .Net applications, managing interactions between ERP, Warehouse and Retail systems. With a major PoS integration project to deliver in the following year however, it was time to invest in a dedicated middleware platform.

We built the new solution around BizTalk Server 2013 r2, leveraging BAM and a custom ASP .Net MVC portal to provide a near real-time view of messages processed. A screen grab of a page from the portal is available here. The ESB Exceptions Framework was employed to give a robust and consistent method of dealing with system exceptions, with details emailed to support staff and available in the custom portal.

The message bodies of all messages processed are streamed to a dedicated SQL Server database using a custom pipeline component. This is linked to message data selected by the BAM processing, allowing users to easily click from a record in the custom BAM portal, to be presented with a copy of the message before or after it was processed. This traceability has proved invaluable in helping troubleshoot issues with any messages in exchange with 3rd party systems.

The support team also have the option to re-submit message via dedicated pages of the custom portal, with access restricted through Windows Authentication.

Since a successful launch of the new integration platform in 2015, BizTalkers have continued to provide on-call support as well as pro-active monitoring and tuning. This service is most re-assuring for Paul Haigh, their Head of Software Development:

“Our in-house team administer the BizTalk group on a day to day basis, but we don’t have the expertise for development of significant additions, or experience to cover all live issues. BizTalkers really know the product inside-out, so being able to call on them to help resolve any BizTalk related problem is very reassuring.”
Paul Haigh
Go Outdoors, Head of Software Development