With data communication being a vital element of a seamless downstream supply chain, partnering companies must agree upon common processes and standards. To discuss this topic further, key players of the German petroleum industry gathered at the 15th IFLEXX meeting in Bochum on Thursday 24 October. All in all, 14 companies followed the invitation of the international software and consulting firm Implico. The participants came from the refinery, tank terminal, service station, software, consulting and trade sectors.
After a welcome speech and a review of the 11 years that passed since IFLEXX’s introduction in 2008, the attendees turned their eyes towards the future. A central topic: innovative process integration options that go beyond the established standards IFLEXX (International File Exchange XML) and PIDX (Petroleum Industry Data Exchange), such as cloud services. Here, the attendees discussed the option of expanding the IFLEXX community’s topical focus in the future. They showed a keen interest in the idea of making the annual gathering a suitable forum for companies and solution providers within the downstream supply chain to discuss requirements and exchange views.
The representatives of the German petroleum industry agreed that enhanced process integration is a key piece of digital transformation. They quickly came to terms that the IFLEXX community had to open up and embrace cloud solutions, too. The pursued goal: to broaden the range of interests and provide a forum for participants to learn about and discuss the latest innovations. Furthermore, they favoured the idea of inviting external experts to provide additional impulses on certain topics. The outlined reorientation of the IFLEXX community received very positive feedback from the assembled members.
Thomas Fahland of Cloud specialist Implico also welcomes the new course: “Such a forum would give industry representatives the chance to discuss their requirements for future services directly with the providers.”