Presence of iDempiere in Slovakia

iDempiere is a modern ERP (enterprise resource planning) and very complex software system that can manage all accounting, process documentation, manufacturing, warehousing, logistics, service and various other operations and processes of enterprises and firms simultaneously in several accounting reports (simultaneously be a company that has, for example, a mother in Germany and a branch in the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary accounted for all four accounting reports …).

iDempiere works is that it is installed on the server (internally or externally) as a standalone system or can run as an extension of the current / parent / corporate-supported comprehensive ERP software / computer program (e.g. SAP, Oracle, Navision, SAGE, ABRA …) what is common in Slovak branches of foreign parent companies that corporate / international use some of these ERP systems. This may be interesting if the foreign mother to her Slovakian production branch with several warehouses (with material, parts, components and finished products), which is expanding corporate SAP introduced, but for process control between production and warehouse here in Slovakia (especially if you need the system to quickly add something new, something tweak or fix) is the iT support from abroad often very rigid.

Here comes the series iDempiere as an extension of a large parent control system, for example, only processes within the superstructure of production operations between production and new stores, Slovak software provided by local partner who knows if any need to respond immediately compared with the IT department for example. in Germany and Sweden, where the reaction time in some cases may take several days. A positive element in this case is sufficient confidence parent company towards the delegation of responsibilities to local Logistics / Warehouse Manager, which is in demand for IT partner is free to opt for smaller local Slovak company.

iDempiere is however a complex system that can manage corporate / business processes ranging from customer relationship management (Customer Relationship Management), including all manufacturing, warehousing, logistics (including management of material flows), financial and accounting operations, document management, archiving after service operations and property management, fleet management (corporate fleet management), internal company logistics ranging from automation to driver Assistant Systems, visitor registration and attendance of employees, delegation of rights and responsibilities of employees and partners, the recording of usage data, failure, repair or mined assets, tools and equipment, and other operations and processes that can be in the system to create, add and adjust according to the needs of a particular company and the areas in which it operates …
MULTIMAGE Ltd. is the development of iDempiere historically specialised in particular for use in improving the comprehensive management of warehousing and material flow management (Warehouse Management System – WMS). Within it is the task of analyzing the system, manage, design flow of all data, information and goods and for the entire process chain, whether in one or more establishments or different sectors or areas at one time.

The system iDempiere all hardware and software modular connected by no mutually compatible and variable.

The advantage iDempiere the implementation of the warehouse management is already mentioned seamless integration of other systems and applications software or specialised storage equipment e.g. specialised scanners, readers, terminals, displays, tablets and mobile devices, printers …
The system allows continuously updated overview of materials and supplies to a specific place of deposit A complete records of all movements in the warehouse, including immediate support of spot analyzes, inspections and inventories.
This course follows the effective management of movements in storage and use of their premises and vehicles really optimal.
A suitable extension can thus be, for example, the possibility of linking the systems to assist various specialized workers, drivers and optimizing shelf vehicle assignment of vehicles, equipment and staff on specific projects, tasks or contracts under process, labor and material flow.

The iDempiere is fully flexible and adaptable for independent use of its different modules for individual use eg. only production processes, rental, warehousing, logistics and transportation, or even individual process activities such as training or picking as a completely separate area.
It provides a wide range of statistics on stocks and movements, including the management and monitoring of complex warehouse operations (receiving, unloading, picking, picking of, routing, tracking phybu / path / tracking /, loading, removal etc.) in one integrated point.

Additional options include iDempiere system through standardized interfaces and modern system architecture, allowing for future updates and versions, light and easy integration and compatibility within the possibilities of interconnection with existing client systems, respectively. other software systems / computer software, shopping cart software, connectivity and active use of the latest hadrverových components and technologies of mobile phones, tablets, laser scanners, proximity and touch terminals, scanners and mobile printers, with the support of RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) and devices for wireless communication GPS etc.

Why should a company or business use iDempiere?

  • iDempiere is used around the whole world and the iDempiere community works hard every day for everyone´s satisfaction. Anyone can be a friend of the community.
  • Myself and my company MULTIMAGE s.r.o. has several years experience with system and we closely cooperate with the very founders and core people of iDempiere. I personally belong to the most active members of the iDempiere community in the world.
  • iDempiere operates great either on-site or in cloud, on a small or big capacity servers. Among its advantages are easy instalation, implementation, deployment, development, testing and adaptation.
  • While it uses common technologies available and used world-wide, it is higly interoperable and connectible with other software systems and hardware.
  • iDempiere provides high-end quality accounting system to any enterprise and is ready also for multiple international accounting (common within big companies operating within more countries or even worldwide).
  • iDempiere provides improved code in comparision to ADempiere (previous generation).

IDempiere strength is not only the most advanced technology, the overall benefit and importance for every company lies in a thorough analysis of business processes, leading to their long-term optimization and identify all vulnerabilities and the resulting savings, leading to maximum and sustainable control leading to a reduction costs.

Among current projects within the framework of continuous development and improvement of our company iDempiere MULTIMAGE Ltd. implements for its clients include integration project 30 different shopping cart software integration and financial and economic system including a complete document management, business process management, service process, the storage and rental, logistics and fleet management into one integrated central system.

Of course, in the near or distant future developing other projects and we are open to any partner cooperation for the development and improvement of iDempiere Slovakia, leading to the satisfaction of all parties and to the continuous improvement and optimization of business and working conditions and processes. We look forward to communicating, meeting and possible cooperation also with you.

Why I am interested in cloudempiere?

When I met with the fact that HansaWorld Enterprise ERP/CRM software did not have sufficient WMS (warehouse management system) module and was just too expensive for our potential client I started to browse google as I always do J (but still less and less… JOKE!)

And suddenly it happened! I found something called open source ERP what I understood as „free“ ERP. „Wait a moment, Norbert!“, I told myself. The software system was ADempiere which evolved from  Compiere and when I studied it more deep, I understood that I can download the source code, customise it for clients needs or develop freely something new. I understood, that with good skilled people we can develop even our own WMS module, tailored exactly to the particular customer´s need.

So I hired such people, we worked hard, presented our solution to client and won the job!

3000 square metres warehouse with 2000 pallet positions managed by our new software! Wow!

That time, we firstly cooperated with freelance developer from Mexico, Victor Pérez, what was also another scope on the thing, because I, as the Project Manager and the key person responsible for the whole project realised, that if you have a real professional a skilled member of your team whose skilles and experiences you can rely on, you can cooperate and manage even important international projects online.

Finally, the client was so satisfied with the price of the solution and the goals we reached together, including warehouse usage optimisation, many different monitoring and reporting functions and finally, labor force costs decrease, that we joined a logistics show to present our successful cooperation together.

From that time ADempiere evolved to iDempiere using more sophisticated technologies (e.g. OSGi framework) and the challenges of high cost into the hardware, when installing the system within the client´s premises (on his own servers) motivated us to switch to cloud based SaaS solution based on Amazon cloud servers.

That is how cloudempiere was found…

Vocabulary – ERP Content Classification and tags

This post describes a concept called VOCABULARY. It helps iDempiere admins to categorise records from simple classification to  awesome multi-perspective catalogisation  or  modern  CMS tagging solution.

Background

After I analyzed our customers´ requirements about implementing multiple stores into Magento and iDempiere, the first important question was how should we categorise our products in a modern way. I’ve also asked some other people about their experiences on iDempiere´s forum thread. The top contributor Deepak from Logilite has recommended us to use Product Category for Accounting and Legacy categorization and  implement another solution for better categorisation. For better understanding: Product Category has one perspective to categorise products and it also has a Parent Category, which means that it is able  to implement a tree structure, but we can only define one structure. To make a long story short – we can´t implement multiple stores in this way.

Our requirements about the project

We´ve  made a requirement analysis and the following tools were classified as “must have”.

  • For eCommerce usage – each webstore should have its own tree category – so 1 product must be categorised into multiple trees
  • The solution should be implemented for feature usage by creating a so called “independent product”, which has to support any further database table.
  • Users want to assign products in batches – like “Mass Update”

Collect motivations

Some years ago my company implemented Alfresco (an open platform for business software) and Liferay (a free and open source enterprise portal software product). We also use WordPress, which works very well. My experiences from the world of CMS gave me a good starting point. However, there are the standards  – with the similar concept – where the content can be assigned to categories, which are organised into the tree structure.

The proof about the efficiency of the concept

We´ve designed 3 main new objects: Vocabulary and Classification and Classification Instance. Vocabulary defines new classification perspective  and then creates the root and the tree structure.

vocabulary-list

vocabulary-details

classification-detail

Example structure

Website Catalog 2015 Website Catalog 2016
  • cat11
    • cat 11A
    • cat 11B
  • cat12
  • cat13
  • cat 21
    • cat 21A
    • cat 21B
  • cat 22
  • cat 23

How to improve the usage of the Vocabulary by iDempiere

The application can be used in any possible way,  because it was designed for common usage. Common usage means: Simply create a new vocabulary, select the table you want, define classification entries and organise them into the tree.

Price Schema – to create a new price list schema, you just have to add a new line, enter sequence and select between Product Category, Vocabulary and the tree.

New Module tree for DMS – We are working on a DMS plugin (with Deepak from Logilite) – Yesterday we had a review about our concept and – in context of massive content classification –  we´ve found out that it could be applied with a high potential. Of course we need to some other requirement Analysis as well. It´s quite plausible that we don’t need to implement other new features here.

Mass Update Classifications –  hundreds or thousands of products can be classified and later searched by only a few clicks.

produc-mass-update

Select Classification Tree – As Vocabulary included hundreds of records we have made an another improvement – with custom field type – available here. To the users:  if you are searching a product then first select vocabulary named “Product Catalog 2015”,  then select the value and the exact category you want.

tree-fieldtype

When will it be available for the community?

The project is on its good way to publish it to the public, but it needs time and work.  By sponsorship/supported development we are able to make it available as a plugin or to apply further development. If you have got any questions about the commercial availability of the project, feel free to check my website www.cloudempiere.com

Use Mandrill BCC emails from iDempiere

Introduction

This week i was responsible for for supervising/designing  on an ongoing project dealing  with the iDempiere Dunning Process. Our customers required a software which is able to send e-mails quickly and without planning them too carefully (shooting emails).

Workaround

We did all necessary iDempiere Dunning settings (levels, formats..), and were ready to start sending emails. Customers use a 3th party local SMTP provider to send emails. I´d suggest to use a high transactional mailing system instead of the mentioned SMTP provider. My previous experiences have showed out that SMTP servers using for end user emailing time-to-time stay blacklisted.

Of course there are a lot of tools like mxtoolbox where the customers with admin rights are able to check their IP addresses, and remove their IP from the blacklist but this task is rather time consuming and the result of dunning can be pretty unpredictable.

To achieve the best email-shooting experience possible, I´d recommend to use Mandrill. This is a service, which is absolutely compatible with the iDempiere Mailing system.

What is mandrill ?


Mandrill ActivitiesMandrill is a transactional mail system provided by the popular Mailchimp authors. Mailchimp gives their customers solutions, which can solve both easier and more complex mailing problems. Mandrill supports SMTP or/and Mandrill API interfaces and it really works like a charm: You can quickly setup SMTP servers by including API keys.

Mandrill is free service to store 2000 mails. Of course the size of the storage can be upgraded for some extra charge (cca. 10 USD/month). See more details about pricing.

 

 

Requirement List


To give the best solution to this mailing problem, we also have to focus on our customers questions related to the topic:

  1. How will I know that the e-mail was sent to my customer ?
  2. After I send my mail, where can I find the copy of it ?
  3. Do I get a kind of notification if the e-mail was properly sent or it was returned?
  4. Customers want to send MULTIPLE E-MAILS but they also want to have a copy of those mails in their mailboxes

Customers, using CRM systems have got the same issues, so our solution could be universal…

Components & Setup


  1. Setup iDempiere ERP  – iDempiere has wide range of functionalities according to mass dunning process requirements. We need make some setups. First, we need setup two System Configurator. A. BCC emails to Sender (MAIL_SEND_BCC_TO_ADDRESS=Y) B. Use client level SMTP settings instead user level (MAIL_SEND_CREDENTIALS=C). C.)Next we need setup SMTP server details in Client window.
    As last we can make some mail templates users can select
  2. Setup Mandrill – STMP – as i mentioned above, i like this service because simplicity and good reporting options. When your account is done, then simple create a SMTP token, and for best deliverability you need to setup DKIM and SPF records make entitled and trusted to send emails from customer domain.
  3. Thunderbird as end-user Email Client – de-facto standard, people like it, I prefer it on my projects. Official guide is here. To achieve our goal is setup Apply filter when,

 

The Process


All emails created or generated by iDempiere be delivered by mandrill service to original recipient (customer) and BCC’d to sender email server. E-mails will be stored and are traceable on mandrill activity page. User copies will received in Thunderbird and routed by filter and  stored in Sent Messages Mailbox. 

Future Improvements and Vision

I’m thinking about develop a iDempiere Mandrill plugin, extend iDempiere email setup by features using Mandrill API and sending more detailed informations about emails to make it better filterable.

 

Why I write this blog?

During my studies of Sound Composition in Budapest, Hungary, I was fascinated by the laws of music composing and the rules of making the composition of tones to sound right. Although, we had been using some simple software systems for sound arrangements and production (cut, dramatics, effects…) in the university, it was millions of miles far from anything called business management or enterprise resource planning software.

However, when I started to think about opening my own business (that time a sound engineering studio) I started to look for and test various different, mostly CRM software systems (for managing my own clients) in combination with accounting for a small business.
The world of software was growing significantly day by day and while I was experiencing very often that many companies around me were failing to manage their operations, processes and documents, I started to think to focus rather on software consultacy services to help them out.

Marginally, I had also a chance to see presentations of the top notch CRM systems as Salesforce, SugarCRM, and DMS systems – e.g.Alfresco… and, of course, I first heared about big ERP players like SAP and Oracle.

Maybe it sounds little bit strange to someone, but the complexity and harmony of all the processes operating in one time within these software systems trully impressed me…

And then, back in 2004 I met with the Swedish ERP software system (HansaWorld Enterprise) Sales Representative, who presented me this flagship system of their company and showed me what it worth. „The nordic simplicity“ seemed really reasonably to me! So I decided to cooperate with HansaWorld Enterprise as a partner, supplier of their services, implementor and consultant and I did it for whole 10 years. Firstly, we operated in Budapest, Hungary and then we opened our premisses also in Czech Republic and Slovakia were I come from. I was lucky to work within international team of Hansa World Enterprise, to join them first time in Grand Canaria, Spain.

Before Apple won the world with his iMac in 2001…

One important thing I also appreciated with HansaWorld Enterprise was that it operates well on Apple computers.

You know, already in early 90´s I became a total fan of the Macintosh world and Steve Jobs. My personal experience with using Macintosh technologies started in 1995 when I started to use Apple Performa 5200. I started to study more and more and gone to the very botom spheres of software consultacy and implementation, having long and deep discussions with professionals throughout the world. The more deep and wide I got, the more active I was meeting people from the wide open source community.

I spoke with developers, implementators, software testers, users… And I was fascinated increasingly by the way these people think and work.
I met the fact that the freedom is the most important value for me and although great experience with stable proprietary business system I decided to bring something and participate for the open source community, I met lot of new friends ….Well, today, 9 years later, it is just natural for me to say, I am one of the evangelists of open source life style and that with open source I simply found my way… And,all the experience I gained and which I write about, are commercially used by company based by me and successfully sold to our customers .

And thanks to many great people from the open source community around the world and my company team members´enjoyment from saving resources, process optimization and putting things into the right order flows from me to everyone…