It comes as no surprise that modern businesses running QAD are looking to increase their mobile capabilities.
Many of our conversations focused around Mobile Enterprise Integration (MEI), which is our integration platform and business process management tool. MEI makes it possible for you to run your business systems (i.e. Salesforce.com®, .Net®, Oracle®, SQL Server®, Sharepoint®, QAD, Progress/OpenEdge®) on any device, and on any browser. Sound good for business? Find out more about MEI.
Last week in the Big Easy, we also talked to a lot of folks about TailorPro, our non-invasive customization tool for QAD. As part of our commitment to continuous improvement of our products, now with version 8.1, you get MEI functionality *included*. For years, we've seen companies getting started with an investment in TailorPro, and getting the benefits "Easier than doing nothing". So, if your team has TailorPro already and would like to go mobile, has a customization need, are on an aging version of QAD, or are just curious how we can help you get better at what matters, we're here for you.
Why? Simple - it's QAD's recommended solution for payment card processing for any company running QAD that needs to take credit card payments. Does your company take credit card payments, but you missed us or didn't make it to Explore this year? We'll be happy to give you a demo of our CCI solution in action.
We look forward to continuing all these conversations, and will be doing outreach this week to follow up. If there are any questions we can answer in the meantime just let us know!
Thanks so much to all the participants and organizers whose input and support made for a successful trade show.
We are very pleased to welcome Jeff Leinwand to the blog this week, in an interview as ProStar Software's new CTO. We've asked a few questions and had a great conversation that is definitely worth sharing, so, here's introducing Jeff in his own words:
ProStar: We'll get to work in a bit, but let's start with how you like to relax. I'm curious, for example after a long week, what's your favorite thing to do on a Saturday afternoon?
Jeff: Saturday is for outdoor activities. In my younger days it was team sports changing to golf and tennis as I got older. Once kids came along it moved on to their soccer and little league baseball with an occasional basketball league thrown in. Now that kids are grown it is back to outdoor activities, with the grandkids when possible.
ProStar: That sounds like a great way to spend the weekend. With your many years in the enterprise software business I imagine you've done a fair share of traveling. Is there anything you absolutely don't leave home without?
Jeff: Yes, just a few things. I never leave home on a long trip without smart phone and computer. Everything else can be replaced (except my wife, so if not on business I never leave without her but computer and phone are also brought along).
ProStar: That seems very reasonable! I wonder, on a more philosophical note, if you can describe for our readers a lesson or insight that informs your work?
Jeff: Consider the end user when building software. Too often brilliant technical solutions are wasted because the target audience doesn't understand how to use the solution. Not only don't we know what we don't know, we don't know what the end user doesn't know. Success for a system, no matter how complex it is, lies in the simplicity of its use. As software engineers we need to learn from auto manufacturers. Cars are very complex machines but the general user interface to drive a car is very simple even though the user doesn't understand the systems that make up the car. If you look at the biggest complaint of car owners it seems to be with the new technology for entertainment, navigation and syncing up phones, none of which has anything to do with the driving the car. The software guys still haven't learned from the hardware guys.
ProStar: That reminds me of KISS - Keep It Simple Stupid! Our users are definitely lucky to have your down to earth perspective on that. I imagine that's something you've learned alongside a host of other useful knowledge, but maybe you can you give us just a brief list of some professional skills you've found most useful in your career?
ProStar: And how did you aquire all those skills? Which of your career moves have been most important setting you up for the CTO role here with us?
Jeff: As an accounting major (MBA) with a computer science technical option I started my career developing a commercial General Ledger system for Burroughs Corporation (now Unisys). Went to work for a major accounting firm doing consulting and EDP audits. Spent several years at a manufacturing company, first as a Systems and Programming Manger, then as IT Manager, finally moving into manufacturing where I ran the new product line (purchasing, manufacturing engineering, production and quality). Moving on to QAD, my role in charge of the Strategic Consultants, Custom Programming Group and Technical Support Group was very informative. As VP of Product Development with Strategic Information Group I did LEAN Manufacturing as well as QAD consulting. And then, I founded Sabino Creek with another former QAD/SIG person, and that really paved the way, we did custom software and international ERP partnerships.
ProStar: So, Jeff, to the heart of the matter. What are you most looking forward to in your work here?
Jeff: There is nothing more rewarding than creating product. Having spent a great deal of time on the production floor I know first hand how many employees take pride in their work and become frustrated when they have ideas to improve the product but management won't listen. I have also seen workers who were detached from their product and observed the resulting lack of quality. I have seen too many managers operating without the proper information and/or training to create the efficiencies required to compete in today's world. Finally, I have been both a provider of systems and information and a consumer of those systems and information. so I am well positioned to understand the technology required to deliver information and understand the needs of the person receiving and using the information.
I want to enable organizations, that is, ProStar as well as our customers, to use tools that will help achieve goals, improve products, improve work environment, quality, and bottom line.
ProStar: Jeff, this was wonderful. Thank you very much, and welcome on board!
As a Progress Application Partner, ProStar Software is very pleased to be presenting this year on benefits and uses of our Mobile Enterprise Integration (MEI). MEI is an Integration Platform as a Service (IPaaS); MEI automates coordination of your essential business systems and functions, from any browser and any mobile device.
What does MEI mean?
MEI means, seamless connection of all the steps from all the people in the right order at the right time. For example, in a purchasing scenario, from quote to request to approval to order, no more emails are needed.
MEI means, no more awkward transfer between your sales lead pipeline in Salesforce.com to orders in QAD to your customer service interface, you can take care of it all on your phone and information is automatically sent to the people who need it.
MEI means, your ERP specific rules are easily applied and integrated with your current systems and functions.
MEI means, simply, improved productivity.
What does MEI include?
MEI is currently integrated with: Progress/OpenEdge applications, Salesforce.com, SAP, Oracle, SQL Server, Sharepoint, QAD, .NET and we are happy to do customized integrations specific to your business and on additional systems.
Connect all participants in your business processes, from customers to employees to suppliers. Our workflow functions meet the industry standard: BPMN v2.0.
Complex Event Processors:
Our context-sensitive rules use your existing business logic to define notification, timing, and relevance as appropriate for your company.
Your current applications and business systems can now be accessed on any mobile device, and on any browser.
For any company that wasn't at Exchange 2013, or if you didn't get your free demo in Boston, contact us to find out how MEI can mobilize your business.
What is Business Process Management?
by Bruce LeBel, CEO, ProStar Software, on 2012.12.17
Business Process Management, or BPM, begins with the definition of business processes. A business process encompasses a set of distinct tasks or activities performed by individuals in different roles. In the end, the business process achieves a defined business objective, which required each of the various participants’ completion of their steps. One simple example would be: Add a New Customer, requiring inputs from Customer Service, from Sales Management, from the Credit Manager, and from Accounts Receivable.
Every organization has essential business processes that require interdepartmental and interdisciplinary activities, often including individuals who use different computer applications, such as engineers, and sometimes including individuals outside of the organization, such as vendors.
BPM is an organizational paradigm, as well as a technology, that values the defined business processes of an organization as the model for operational success. With BPM, the business processes can be automatically coordinated, tracked, measured, analyzed and improved.
BPM draws guidance from other Total Quality Management or Continuous Improvement Process methodologies. BPM goes further by providing technology to enable the automated systems. In fact, BPM generates a new category of data, business event data, that supports both the operational tools for control of active processes, as well as the analysis of completed processes for visibility of opportunities for continuous improvement.
Contact ProStar Software for more information on ProStar’s cloud or server based BPM applications, WorkFlowGPS for companies running applications on any platform, and Business Process Control for companies running Progress OpenEdge applications.