PunchOut Terms Explained

In this second article on PunchOut we look at some terms used and what they mean:

Level II PunchOut is a PunchOut-enabled website with the special ability to allow the buyer to punch-out directly to an item from within a procurement system.

OCI (Open Catalog Interface) is the standard format used by SAP Supplier Relationship Management and Microsoft Dynamics AX when connecting to external punch-out catalogs.

The OCI format is used to define the field mapping between the supplier’s catalog and the SAP SRM shopping cart, to ensure that the data is transferred accurately and completely between source and receiver. This standard is used instead of XML or cXML

cXML (commerce eXtensible Markup Language) is a protocol, created by Ariba, intended for the communication of business documents between procurement applications, e-commerce hubs and suppliers.

cXML is based on XML and provides formal XML schemas for standard business transactions, allowing programs to modify and validate documents without prior knowledge of their form.

The protocol does not include the full breadth of interactions some parties may wish to communicate. However, it can be expanded through the use of extrinsic elements and newly-defined domains for various identifiers.

Roundtrip (Punch-out) functionality allows suppliers to maintain branded content on their own web site but provide buyers with the ability to automatically login by clicking a link from within their eprocurement software program. During the automatic login process the buyers eprocurement software passes the supplier site credentials which authenticate the buyer and allow the supplier to display buyer / account specific items and pricing.

After products are selected by the buyer, the Roundtrip service automatically brings the required item details back into the buyer’s eprocurement program for purchasing. At this point, the order is routed through the normal requisition and approval processes and eventually converted into a purchase order that is sent back to the supplier for order fulfillment.

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