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SAP to route work via Exchange

SAP plans to combine its business applications with Microsoft's Exchange message server for routing work throughout a company.

SAP America plans to integrate its R/3 business applications with Microsoft's Exchange as part of a larger effort to quickly develop workflow applications.

Introduced in March, Exchange is an enterprise messaging system that offers email, group discussion, and the underlying messaging backbone for other business applications.

SAP is the leading vendor of high-end business applications that manage accounting, human resources, manufacturing, and other companywide or departmental kinds of applications.

The company wants to tie these applications in with messaging servers so that work can be automatically routed throughout a company, similar to the way an expense report would be routed through one department to another. This kind of routing mechanism--called workflow--is being tied more often to a company's messaging system, such as Exchange or Lotus Notes.

SAP already offers a version of R/3 for use with Notes. But now with Exchange out on the market for six months, SAP wants to account for the leading contender to Notes' crown.

SAP officials would not confirm availability or pricing.

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