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This Week in IDEA | January 16, 2008

Our eNewsletter, This Week in IDEA, keeps you informed with the latest news and education about IDEA, our solutions and services, and our customers and partners. IDEA’s knowledgeable staff and other contributing writers share insights, resources and special offers to help you Unleash the power of e. Subscribe now to receive This Week in IDEA in your email inbox every other Thursday and add our RSS feed to your reader.


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New IDEA and IDEA Industry Retail Database (IRD) Customers

IDEA announces three new customers and five new IDEA Industry Retail Database (IRD) customers. Read more about these companies and how you can begin trading with them electronically to expand your business.

New IDEA Customers

United States Electrical Services, Inc.
United States Electrical Services, a distributor from Hartford, CT, became an IDEA customer on January 4, 2008. US Electrical Services is a wholesale distributor of electrical products and related services with 45 locations throughout the US. They will be relying on the Industry Data Warehouse (IDW) to receive their suppliers’ product and pricing information. Welcome aboard!

Electrical Wholesalers  
Electrical Wholesalers (EW), a distributor from Hartford, CT, became an IDEA customer on January 4, 2008. EW is a wholesale distributor specializing in electrical and data communication supplies. They will be relying on the Industry Data Warehouse (IDW) to receive their suppliers’ product and pricing information. Welcome aboard!

Air King
Air King, a manufacturer from West Chester, PA, became an IDEA customer on January 9, 2008. Air King is a leading manufacturer of ventilation products. They will be taking advantage of the cost savings and reliability of the Industry Data Exchange (IDX) to exchange business information and relying on the Industry Data Warehouse (IDW) to receive their suppliers’ product and pricing information. Welcome aboard!

New IDEA Industry Retail Database (IRD) Customers

IDEA, a 1SYNC Data Pool On-Board Solution (OBS) partner, implements suppliers that subscribe to the 1SYNC data pool using IDEA's IRD CERICOMX® application. IDEA was recently assigned five suppliers:

Big Time Toys 
Dana Classic Fragrances, Inc. 
Whitley’s Ice Cream 
Mayport Wholesale Seafood, Inc.

These companies will be trained to use IRD CERICOMX®, an IDEA branded product for supporting and uploading supplier product information into the GS1 Registry® and GDSN via the 1SYNC Data Pool.

If you would like to learn more about the CERICOMX® product, please contact , IRD Product & Customer Support Manager, at .

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IDEA Launches Customer Portal

IDEA recently launched a customer portal ( to provide customers with one stop access to product resources online.

The customer portal is a password protected site providing secure and direct access to Industry Data Warehouse (IDW), Industry Data Exchange (IDX) and Industry Retail Database (IRD). The site also features IDEA Live Chat, public and private access to product support and training materials, Standards knowledge base and the ability to create support cases. The portal endured additional enhancements after it underwent beta testing from October to December 2007.

IDEA is currently setting up customers on the portal in groups of 50 so that all account managers have ample time to train users and answer the expected questions. Upon set-up, customers will receive a welcome email with their new user names and passwords for private access to the portal. The estimated set-up completion date is February 1, 2008.

The portal will eventually be the main source to access IDW, IDX and IRD and submit support cases. Consequently, the individual product URLs that customers currently use will be deemed obsolete in mid-2008.

If you have any questions about the customer portal or login process, please contact your account managers at or call .

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IDEA’s President on 2008 and Beyond

IDEA’s new President, Robert E. (Bob) Gaylord has been busy meeting numerous industry leaders and influencers since he assumed his position on December 3, 2007. These meetings have influenced his primary objectives and action plan for 2008 to progress IDEA and the electrical channel to greater levels of success.


Fresh off of his first IDEA Board of Directors meeting, Gaylord has a clear vision of what the strengths of the company and the industry are. His main objective for 2008 and beyond is to make “100 percent of our customers 100 percent happy.”


Gaylord is eager to get involved with a team that cares so much about providing great services and are highly motivated to do so. “I am blessed with a passionate and talented staff. And as for our Board, it was so pleasant to see them set aside any differences to decide what’s best for the industry. Our owners play a very important role within our company as well. Their support is phenomenal,” said Gaylord.


And what is best for the industry?


“We need to perfect the way we build relationships between trading partners. The ways that IDEA can help with this are through the data governance programs we’ve established, getting back to basics, and focusing on the electrical channel,” said Gaylord.


Gaylord plans on making at least 25 on-site customer visits this year and has already met with key staff at Dakota Electric Supply and Border States Electric Supply. Much of 2008 will be focused on helping customers and getting to the crux of any problems they may have.


“Personally, I need to know what customers want and need. There is a widespread mindset out there when it comes to adopting eCommerce. I’d want to know why and what can we do to help with that,” said Gaylord. “We will continue to focus on data governance and improving the data quality that is transferred between partners.”


“Distributors haven’t reached the industry’s ultimate vision of receiving seamless data yet. We plan on working closely with the manufacturers to get this right for everyone. Adoption of standards would benefit a mass number of companies. If you don’t have standards, you don’t know if you have good data,” said Gaylord.

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Wally Adamchik Selected to Speak at The E-Biz Forum 2008

IDEA is pleased to announce that Wally Adamchick, President and Owner of Firestarter Speaking and Consulting (, has been selected as a general session speaker for the IDEA E-Biz Forum 2008.

Wally Adamchik began his leadership at the University of Notre Dame, where he was the mascot and led 65,000 people on every football Saturday.

As an Officer of Marines, Adamchik deployed throughout the world in training, peace-keeping, and combat operations. First, in a tank battalion and then, as the pilot of AH-1W Super Cobra attack helicopters.

Always seeking a new challenge, Adamchik entered the hyper-competitive private sector. He was recognized for superior performance and award-winning leadership at two national restaurant companies. At the same time he earned his Master of Business Administration from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

He is currently the President of FireStarter Speaking and Consulting and serves as a consultant, speaker, and author. His new book, NO YELLING -The Nine Secrets of Marine Corps Leadership, was named as one of the best business reads for summer 2007 by Adamchik also consults with the Marine Corps as a Non-Resident Fellow working with the Corps to define and refine leadership doctrine for the 21st century.

Buy Wally Adamchik’s book on leadership

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Understanding GS1, GS1 US and IDEA’s Role in Standards Creation and Implementation: Part One


GS1, formerly known as EAN, is the leading global organization dedicated to the design and implementation of standards and solutions to improve the efficiency and visibility of supply and demand chains globally and across sectors. The organization’s goal is to simplify global commerce by connecting the flow of information with the flow of goods.

GS1's main activity is the development of the GS1 System, formerly know as the EAN.UCC System, which is a series of standards designed to improve supply chain management. This system is the most widely used supply chain standards system in the world.

A management board composed of key leaders and drivers from multi-nationals, retailers, manufacturers and GS1 Member Organizations governs GS1. As a result, the GS1 management board has a global, multi-sectorial make-up. GS1 represents its interests at meetings with official bodies (i.e. United Nations, NATO, and the European Commission), international associations, and other institutions. EPCglobal, leader of the industry initiatives for Electronic Product Code™ Standards, and Global Data Synchronization Network (GDSN) are GS1 initiatives that have separate management boards.

GS1 System

The GS1 System enables companies of any size, industry, or geography to communicate in The Global Language of Business™ in over 140 countries worldwide. Collectively, over one million member companies around the world utilize these business tools to drive costs out of the supply chain and improve business productivity and efficiency.



The GS1 System is composed of four key areas:


  • BarCodes: Numbering and bar coding
    • Global data and application standards for bar codes that use the globally recognized GS1 Identification Keys to automatically identify things such as trade items, locations, logistic units, and assets.
  • eCom - EDI (Electronic Data Interchange)
    • Global standards for electronic business messaging that allow rapid, efficient and accurate automatic electronic transmission of agreed business data between trading partners.
  • Global Data Synchronization Network (GDSN) - data synchronization
    • The Global Data Synchronization Network™ (GDSN™) is an automated, standards-based, global environment that enables secure and continuous data synchronization, allowing all partners to have consistent item data in their systems at the same time. Global Product Classification (GPC) is a key component of GDSN, enabling effective category management.
  • EPCglobal - RFID (Radio Frequency Identification)
    • A new global standards system that combines RFID technology, existing communications network infrastructure and the Electronic Product Code (a number for uniquely identifying an item) to enable immediate and automatic identification and tracking of an item through the whole supply chain globally, resulting in improved efficiency and visibility of the supply chain.

GS1 Member Organizations

The standard development and management of the GS1 System is facilitated by GS1’s Member Organizations (MOs). MOs are usually national associations, which provide tools and support that enable their own member companies to manage their supply chains and trade processes far more efficiently. Specifically, the main responsibilities of MOs are:


  • The allocation of unique numbers, which is the basis for the complete range of standards
  • Providing training and support on numbering, bar coding, Electronic Data Interchange (EDI), data synchronization and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID)
  • Supplying information on the standards and the continuing evolution of the GS1 System


The Member Organizations for the United States and Canada are GS1 US (, formerly UCC, and GS1 Canada ( Companies wishing to use the GS1 System apply for membership to a Member Organization. Companies in countries where there is no MO obtain their membership directly from the GS1 Head Office.


GS1 US, formerly the Uniform Code Council (UCC), functions as a primary resource for the development of worldwide standards for identification codes, data carriers, and electronic commerce. More than 250,000 member companies doing business in 25 major industries use open, global standards to optimize their supply chain and business processes.

For more than three decades, GS1 US has championed business standards, new technologies, and global cooperation in order to bring the world's supply chains together. The mission of GS1 US remains focused on leading the establishment and implementation of global standards to drive improvement of the supply and demand chains. GS1 US connects companies in the global supply chain with standards-based solutions that are open, consensus-based, and universally endorsed.

As a member organization of GS1, GS1 US is part of a fully integrated global organization representing over a million companies doing business across 145 countries using the GS1 system.

IDEA’s Role in Standards Creation and Implementation


As a member of GS1 US, IDEA is the official standards-creating body for the electrical industry, serving as such throughout the eCommerce revolution and solving challenges along the way. Our passion and dedication for data standardization are well respected and we are partnered with GS1 US in developing United Nations Standard Products and Services Codes (UNSPSC) for a new era of global eCommerce.

Many of the standards we've created address eCommerce, EDI, XML, and product identification challenges that are common to most industries. As a result, the standards-based infrastructure upon which our products and services are built helps deliver the same time- and money-saving benefits to countless industries that rely on clean data and efficient practices to drive costs out of the supply network.

Stay tuned for Part Two which will address IDEA’s unique role within the Global Data Synchronization Network (GDSN).


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Did You Know? IDW Hot Facts

Over $34 Billion* worth of electrical wholesale distributor purchasing power depends on the Industry Data Warehouse (IDW) for their product and pricing information.


This fact proves IDW as a tremendous value to manufacturers. By providing and maintaining accurate and complete commodity and enriched data to IDW, manufacturers have the opportunity to expand their business and differentiate their products in the marketplace.


*This number makes up over 65% of the top 200 electrical wholesale distributors’ revenue (Jim Lucy, Doug Chandler, Dale Funk. “The Top 200.” Electrical Wholesaling June 2007: 33-36).


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