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Big Data and What It Means for Your Business

Posted by on 12:51 pm in Blog, Uncategorized | 0 comments

You may or may not have heard about Big Data, a concept often confused as one thing as opposed to another. Like the concept of cloud computing, which didn’t find a place in popular parlance until 2010 with the popularization of remotely-hosted backup storage, Big Data wasn’t well-known among the industry as a whole. Even so, it has been an essential feature of many large retail-oriented businesses like Amazon for close to a decade. However, there is a difference between Big Data and every other form of “data.” It is not what it is so much as what you do with it as a business: to gain value from it. You can use large files, including videos, to show your sensitivity to your customer’s needs and desires. Other types of data are seldom touched because they are merely static objects kept in the books for compliance and reference (e.g. credit card information). Any data, therefore, that can serve a purpose aside from being kept in storage can become Big Data, and hence valuable for your bottom line. As an example, you get an email from amazon.com confirming a completed order. On that email, you’ll find several other items that Amazon wants you to consider for your next purchase. In the instant you bought the item, Amazon analyzed it, compared it with similar merchandise, and sent the names and pictures of those items to you. By taking this extra humanizing step, they’ve indicated that your item is as valuable to them as it is to you, and they are willing to do more fast and easy business with you, the customer. Another example is something we don’t really surf the Internet for: advertisements. (Unless you missed Super Bowl commercials, though they’re not the sort of advertisement we need to consider for our intents and purposes.) On any given Google search results page, they sit at the top or some distance away from the right side. Why? Any terms and combinations of terms that you enter into the search box are indexed and compared with pre-assigned terms — usually those supplied by the advertisement author — in a database somewhere. Along with other data that can be determined outside of the search box, such as the user’s IP address and physical location, these terms then get matched to a set of terms corresponding to the advertisement, which is fetched for your eyes to see (or avert). Data in general is just stored somewhere, but whether the data can be transformed into something bigger than itself — thereby creating more value for your business — is determined by ingenuity and applicability. How do you think you can turn your manufacturing and distribution data into something greater than itself? Let us know in the...

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3 Top Manufacturing Trends in 2014

Posted by on 12:29 pm in Blog, High Technology | 0 comments

2014 promises to be a year of great change and opportunity for the manufacturing world.  Several new technologies and trends are emerging that can transform and boost the industry, improving manufacturing communication, efficiency and economy.  Here are three trends that can revolutionize the manufacturing world. 1. More ERP functionality will be moved to the cloud. As smartphone technology improves, it will become easier to synchronize various parts of the ERP suite between smartphones and desktop workstations. They are all connected to the same foundational databases, and they enable users to respond to issues more readily and with increased flexibility. With cloud storage space at a relative premium, preference should be given to high-priority functionality that can be upgraded quickly and accessed easily. That way, all the essentials will be available on-demand—anytime, anywhere—while confidential data remains secure on the premises. 2. Supply chains are more connected than ever. Thanks to the rapid improvement and expansion of mobile technology, today’s supply chain has the potential to accomplish goals faster and more efficiently than ever before. With the help of cloud-based ERP systems, all staff involved in the supply chain can stay in the loop about any issues or blockers that surface during the production phase. For example, if a part isn’t available, one employee can note it in the system, alerting everyone in the supply chain so that the necessary production adjustments can be made. In general, mobile technology in concert with ERP systems will improve business productivity and efficiency.  Less time will be spent hunting outdated spreadsheets for important data, or manually entering changes as they happen. Instead, staff working with specific data will see the change as it happens. Managers will be able to easily and efficiently generate reports to track and maintain essential business information. For the manufacturer, all of this translates to a positive ROI and even a gain on resources. 3. 3D printing will become more widespread, sophisticated and affordable. That means even the plastic and metal used to constitute 3D-printed structures will become cheaper, stronger, and safer to use.  The ability to produce plastic-model prototypes will lend a strong hand to the creative process that backs up the manufacturing process.  In fact, 3D printing is its own class of manufacturing that, at the moment, is fairly limited to producing  simple tools and models that can assist in the existing manufacturing process. A few businesses are capitalizing on downloadable “blueprints” for 3D printing, which simple manufacturers can draft and submit for listing. Your business can stand to benefit from at least two of these trends. Get in touch with us to learn more about how you can advance your manufacturing operations in a matter of weeks with xTuple. If you have an xTuple system in place, take a look at iTuple for an easy way to stay connected to your xTuple...

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Mobile ERP Solutions: A Top Trend in 2014

Posted by on 12:32 pm in Blog | 0 comments

Gone are the days of locally-hosted ERP databases. The year of the mobile ERP is at hand. Locally-hosted databases held their own in the pre-smartphone era, when the cloud was just a nascent creation serving little else than email services. As smartphones have become an essential business tool for executives and business managers, more data has moved to the cloud for easier access. These are not the only facts that indicate the natural, organic movement toward the adoption of mobile ERP technologies. As Dan Roberts of Cambashi asserts, mobile ERP’s potential usefulness stands to change the way we operate with our ERP databases. In the realm of human capital management, mobile ERP allows employees to “submit expense claims remotely, allowing them to claim when they have the receipt in hand, rather than having to search for it later; they can also manage their holidays and personal development remotely, often in their own time.” Manufacturers can also benefit from mobile ERP immediately: “production and operations managers can receive alerts whenever there are potential problems – such as raw materials stuck in transit, or machine breakdowns.” Managers will no longer be shackled to the enterprise workstation; they can see when any problem occurs, even while on the road. Ruth Raistrick further describes the benefits for manufacturing employees: “Tasks like inspection, production reporting, material handling, quality control and more will all benefit from [employees] working on a portable tablet or mobile device.” In addition, sales representatives have more lines of communication with more departments, including the manufacturing warehouse, so their order statuses are always up to date. In the end, she believes that the gap between companies willing to embrace mobile ERP technology and those that wish to stay behind will widen significantly. “Those who are reluctant to adjust to ERP or who are too invested in old, outdated legacy systems which struggle to adapt to supply chain growth will find themselves in danger of losing pace with the competition.” Mobile ERP is going places.  It’s also here to...

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Welcome to Paladin Logic

Posted by on 3:00 pm in Blog | 0 comments

Welcome to Paladin Logic’s new website! Paladin’s Logical Blog is named for us, but it is really about you. It is about how Paladin Logic can make a difference for you – to improve your business, your profits, maybe even a little bit about how to improve your quality of life. To do that I’ll take a little bit of space to introduce Paladin Logic and talk about our plans for 2014. Paladin Logic, founded just before the economy decided to take a high dive into the Swamps of Despair, has dedicated itself to providing the best possible service to our customers by providing the best possible work environment for our team. Our plans for 2014, keeping the admonition of Robert Burns firmly in mind: But, Mousie, thou art no thy lane In proving foresight may be vain: The best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men Gang aft a-gley, An’ lea’e us nought but grief an’ pain, For promised joy. The core of our business is the unparalleled commercial/open-source ERP solution known as xTuple. We’ve led the way in improving small-to-mid-size manufacturers and distributors’ day-to-day operations with our implementations, customizations, and world-class support. As a Gold Partner, we are proud to continue our services and are honored to customize your implementation for your needs. Between our employee-owners, we share over 35 years of experience in solving operational and logistical problems (as well as other kinds of problems), so you can be sure you’re getting what you need when you tap our knowledge and expertise. In addition, Paladin Logic has developed a complimentary mobility offering known as iTuple, which is a read-only version of the CRM module within your xTuple database. It synchronizes between itself and the PostgreSQL-powered xTuple database to display all of your users, contacts, and ToDo tasks in three separate, easy-to-access areas. When you’re on the go, it helps to have even those pieces of valuable information on hand. So you can call customers you’re doing business with, pull up on a map the location of a site’s address, and check off tasks as you finish them. We’re also able to customize iTuple, opening up a much broader horizon in the realm of its capabilities.  Get in touch with us to learn more about how you can do much more with your xTuple data on the...

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