July 2019 Newsletter

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Welcome to PSSI’s Update Newsletter

From your enterprise software experts at
Performance Software Solutions, Inc.

July, 2019

UpdateJuly Edition

Summer’s here and the time is right for… Camping?  Swimming?  Vacationing?  How about a newsletter?  As providers of business software and consulting help, we’re out to inform our clients, partners and prospective customers year-round about the tools, people and software we utilize to make you more profitable and efficient.

We welcome your feedback at any time.  You can call us at 877.273.2444, or drop us an email at info@pssiusa.com.

The Great Robot Takeover: Fact or Fiction?

We don’t have enough plant technicians to take care of automation being put into manufacturing in the United States.”  So says Juergen von Hollen, president of Universal Robots.  The world of manufacturing is quickly moving to one of robots — often dubbed “cobots” — intermingled with humans to perform repetitive and often boring or dangerous plant tasks.  Ford Motor uses them across 16 lines already today.

And even small companies today can afford efficient robots that are flexible, safe and can be placed virtually anywhere.  These cobots — robots as a tool, essentially — are projected to be one-third of the entire robotics market by 2025.

The question isn’t whether robots will replace humans on the line — they already have in factories and warehouses worldwide.  The real issue is how to create the skilled workers to install, run and maintain these robots, and how to responsibly transition the people replaced by automation to new jobs.  And unfortunately there’s still a disconnect between the level of robotics knowledge the next generation has versus what it needs.  That’ according to John Hitch in an article recently published at Industry Week titled The Great Robot Takeover: Fact or Fiction?

If you’re in manufacturing or distribution, it’s something you should be thinking about today.  To help your thought process, we’re providing the link to Hitch’s full article here.  Keep your eye on the future.

TIW Adds Content Management System to ALERE

PSSI has been implementing ALERE manufacturing and accounting software now for over 25 years, and we still think it’s one of the best-priced, best-functioning manufacturing software products you can buy anywhere.  Users appreciate ALERE’s flexibility over many other systems.

The upcoming ver. 15 of their “InTouch” module will see a considerable list of improvements and significant added features…

First and foremost is the introduction of the sophisticated Content Management System. When the InTouch module is present, a Documents tab is automatically added to:

  • The InTouch Company Profile and Prospect Profile screens
  • The Inventory Master screen
  • The Sales Orders screens
  • The Purchase Orders screens
  • The Service module  Site Information screen

New Quotes and Items tabs were added to the Prospect Profile screen to list the quotes and items quoted for each prospect.  (The screenshot above shows an example.)

Taken together, it’s a great way to consolidate views of all related customer information in a single convenient location, including quotes, prints, attachments or whatever else you may want to attach or see.

Want to Learn More About ALERE?

TIW has a 7 minute Manufacturing Overview Video on YouTube that will give you a nice overview of what manufacturing software can do for you.  Click the link above to see why ALERE may be a great fit for your manufacturing operations.

To learn more, call us any time at 877.273.2444, or visit us on the web.

Click HERE to read our popular white paper “Software That Matters” on the ins and outs of purchasing an ERP System.

In this issue of Update

  • The Great Robot Takeover: Fact or Fiction?
  • Who Is PSSI?
  • Tips & Best Practices
  • New Document Management Features Added to ALERE – PLUS7-Minute ALERE Manufacturing Software Overview VIDEO 
  • New License Pricing for Transitioning from NAV to Business Central
  • Free White Paper: Software That Matters
  • CASE STUDY: SEAL Analytical, Inc.

Who Are We?

Performance Software Solutions, Inc. is a northern Indiana-based reseller of enterprise accounting, manufacturing and distribution solutions from leading brands including Microsoft, TIW Technology and Sage Software.  We have been serving the small to midsize manufacturer and distributor, mostly across the Midwest, for over 30 years with a team of business consulting and software experts that is second to none.

PSSI specializes in helping manufacturing and distribution firms solve some of their most difficult process and technology problems.  Though we implement software solutions, we are most tightly focused on people, workflow and process improvement.  We’ve helped hundreds of companies like yours over the past 30 years improve their operations, process flows, automation strategies and their bottom lines.

Need help with your systems?  Learn more at www.pssiusa.com or call any us any time at 877.273.2444

Looking for some prudent advice before investing in software? Check out our Knowledge Bank.

Click any of our links BELOW for tips and best practices on planning for software…

The Difference Between “Reporting” and “Business Intelligence (BI)” Solutions
What Are The Key Drivers of ERP Cost, Time and Risk?
The Town With the Most Robots Per Capita in the U.S.A.? Elkhart, Indiana!

WHAT’S NEW? Updates on Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central (formerly “Dynamics NAV”)…

How Device Licensing Works When Transitioning from Dynamics NAV to Dynamics 365 Business Central

As time goes by, all users of the product known as NAV (Microsoft Dynamics NAV, or formerly, “Navision”) will have to cross the inevitable bridge to the new Business Central, NAV’s replacement.  Today we’ll highlight the comments from longtime NAV blogger Jason Gumpert in a May article about licensing costs and transitioning, specifically for “devices.”

New device license is coming, priced at $40 per month. Use cases will include POS, manufacturing, and shop floor scenarios.  This, according to a Microsoft Marketing staff member.

For Dynamics GP and NAV customers transitioning to Business Central, Microsoft has increased the user ratio from 1:2 to 1:3, meaning for every concurrent GP or NAV user license, the customer gets 3 named on-premises Business Central user licenses. This is a permanent change, not a limited time offer, and it applies to licenses purchased before May 1, 2019. Customers that have already transitioned to Business Central were to receive their additional users via a license adjustment in May 2019.

As part of this policy, according to Mr. Gumpert, “Microsoft has addressed the problem of external access to Business Central by two key roles: a partner representative and an accountant. Microsoft will now grant all on-premise Business Central customers two additional user licenses (CALs) specific to those roles. For existing customers, there may be some extra work required to claim the new licenses.”

Thinking about integrating Dynamics 365 into your business?  Or just have questions about the process, or need advice and recommendations?  Call us any time at 877.273.2444, or visit us on the web.

We’re here to help!

Case Study

Since 1987, PSSI has helped hundreds of companies implement software and improve their workflows through a very personal, hands-on, consultative partnership approach with our clients.

This month we’ll take a brief look at SEAL Analytical, the Wisconsin-based division of an international manufacturer of water and wastewater analytical equipment.

PSSI was first called in to implement an upgrade to SEAL’s old version of their Dynamics NAV accounting system.  But upon performing our usual on-site due diligence and analysis, we discovered some possibly even more important initiatives where our consultants felt they could help SEAL save time, effort and money.

During discussions with SEAL’s materials team we found that the current materials planning system was taking a lot of time and effort to manage, and was becoming more challenging as sales continued to grow.  This had the additional adverse effect of increasing production lead times as well.

PSSI’s consultants worked with the SEAL team to improve the system throughput and efficiencies by first reorganizing the inventory database around common purchase/replenishment criteria, such as commodities and lead times.

Next, the teams defined new ordering policies based on ABC-ranked inventory valuations that would enable improved inventory turns without increasing out-of-stock situations.  Then, we helped them move away from traditional reorder point replenishment towards a more forecast-driven planning methodology that would identify, analyze and project appropriate demand for their most valuable and popular inventory items.

Finally, the team learned to run MRP by any combination of commodity code, vendor or ABC classification that would make reordering simpler, faster and easier for all.  All these improvements had the combined benefit of improving visibility on projected inventory availability while suggesting purchase orders over a longer time horizon, which allowed SEAL to consolidate them and improve purchasing efficiencies.

Now with their new system in place, operators are enjoying the ability to make better inventory decisions, reduce purchase review times and place vendor POs with just a few mouse clicks, saving time, frustration and money.

To learn more about the details of this case study — or to learn how PSSI can help solve your purchasing or other process challenges — just contact Larry Lukasik here at PSSI any time.  We’re here to help!

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