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A common problem I am facing is to connect a Magento shop to an Enterprise Resource Planning system (ERP). For almost every ERP I encounter there is no ready to use extension. So I would have to write an extension doing standard data exchange like:

  • export to ERP: incoming orders, costumers and product quantity
  • cronjob update product quantity from ERP query

Of course the ERP API is always different but the Magento part is always the same; Register to events, query shop data, create cronjob, ...

I know about tutorials on how to write an extension in general, but how can I get started and which are the basic options for this specific task?

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Well, this can be solved from either direction, or both.

It comes down to which API is the better to solve your immediate requirements. Thus the ERP system can be extended to talk to magento's API to pull/push data, or magento can push/pull to/from the ERP API. (or both if needed)

It all comes down to your requirements, and what is the best solution to solve your immediate needs.

There are many tutorials available on how to use the magento API.

  • I have seen many tutorials about the magento API but since I am not at the ERP end this is no use to me. I would need tutorials/examples about a magento extension that connects to the ERP. Can't find anything useful for current magento version... – PiTheNumber Aug 12 '13 at 15:43
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    You say this is a custom ERP. If it is custom, and not a commercial entity, no magento extension will exist, as no one else will be using your custom ERP. It is, well, custom. The ERP will need to have some kind of API to 'talk' to. Since you say you are not at the ERP end, then magento will need to talk to it via it's API. Not knowing what your ERP capabilities are, this question could not really be answered in another way. (my opinion anyways) – ProxiBlue Aug 12 '13 at 15:54
  • Going to be pretty involved, how are your programming and integration skills. Get started: magentocommerce.com/api/soap/introduction.html Custom ERP isn't a good enough description to even begin to help. What is this ERP based on or is it totally hand built from scratch. Guaranteed mismatch between how Magento stores stuff and it stores stuff from the beginning. You'll need access from both ends. – Fiasco Labs Aug 12 '13 at 17:44
  • Well, it is a commercial ERP: pvs-ff.com and it does have an API I can connect to. But I don't want this question to be focused on the ERP. It is a general problem on how to connect any ERP. In 5 month I encountered 4 ERPs with no magento connection. How the heck do I create a connection? Let me rewrite my question. Looks like no one understands me... – PiTheNumber Aug 13 '13 at 7:14
  • Ok, your original question clearly stated it is a custom ERP. Why say that, if it is not? How to connect any ERP? Well, there is no 'magic pill' here. Each ERP would have a different API. You would need to create a magento module that interfaces with that API, be it using REST endpoint calls, or CURL, or POST etc etc. Why do a lot of ERP's have no magento connectivity? Well because no one has written it yet, or made it available to the masses, if they had. Generally this requires custom code. – ProxiBlue Aug 14 '13 at 14:52
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You are experiencing the standard problem and enterprise companies solve this with ETL or ESB. Most small businesses uses point-to-point which is a direct app-app connection via custom code. The problem here is that it is not generic, it needs to be coded for each application pair, and regression tested with each and every change.

For the ETL/ESB side the open-source and mid-range tools are very technical and need Java or simlar code to do anything with them, which is very time consuming so really you are in the same situation as with point-to-point.

The high-end tools used by the top companies are the best as these are business focused and can do 95-99% of the work without code, however are out of reach for most small businesses. Therein lies the problem, the lower your budget the less reuse and more code you have to write, it really is that simple. We can put you in contact with a company which uses the high-end tools connecting Magento to anything including ERP, CRM, Accounting, Inventory, MDM, PIM, otherwise it will be finding the best balance between technical coding and business functionality for your environment, only the high-end tools balance both.

  • This doesn't answer the question at all. – choco-loo Oct 11 '14 at 19:46

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