Oct 21 2013
New Software Maintenance rates effective January 1st, 2014
I wanted to start off this Blog announcing that there are new Software Maintenance rates which go into effect January 1st, 2014.
We've reduced or eliminated certain software maintenance costs, but have also made the costs more strictly dependant on the number of workstations that you are licensed for. The new rates break down to be $30/month per user.
The last time we increased the rates was 8 years ago, and only for a few categories. The time before that was 7 years ago. So for many customers, you haven't had a rate increase in 15 years (unless you expanded your system). So we were well overdue for an increase to allow us to cover our costs to support you and to continue to improve our software.
One noticable change we are putting into effect is a $100/user "re-connect" fee (plus any past due balance) when you cancel your Software Maintenance, and then go back on again in the future. We are putting this into effect to discourage customers from going off Software Maintenance, only to sign back up again when you have questions, problems or want a new feature contained in an update. We've designed our rates so that you continunally stay on Software Maintenance, and can no longer tolerate those customers who "play ping pong" with going on and off maintenance.
If you are not currently on Software Maintenance, you can sign back up before 12/31/13 without the "re-connect" fee. After 12/31/13, the "re-connect" fee will be strictly enforced.
As we are not making our Software Maintnenance Agreement public, you'll need to log in with your NECS username/password to view the agreement here: http://necs.com/support/
It is not necessary for you to sign and re-submit the new Software Maintenance Agreement, however if you do it would be appreciated.
Your support regarding our new rates is appreciated. We view each of our customers as a "partner", with our goal being to bring you great software and eliminate your need and expense of an IT department, as we fulfull that role for you. We are in this together, and when you are successful, we are successful.
New V4 Inventory File Maintenance features
There are some recent enhancements to the V4 Inventory File Maintenance (IFM) which I wanted to bring to your attention.
The first involves a "30-Day Order Breakdown" section and another involves the ability to click on an "Allocated" or "On Order" field and have a window pop-up showing the details.
In the IFM screenshot below, I've circled in red the new "30-Day Order Breakdown" section:
Here is a close up of the "30-Day Order Breakdown":
First notice that there is a slider bar at the bottom of this section. You can advance 30 days into the future by sliding the bar to the right. This provides you with a great snap shot to help you understand your inventory status and availability for this item for the upcoming 30 days.
Next notice that for each date, you can see the following:
On Order: The total amount of that item due to come in that day from outstanding purchase orders.
Allocated: The total amount of that item which has been committed to customers for that day from either invoices or sales orders.
Available: The total amount of that item which is available to sell for that day.
Each of the On Order and Allocated amounts is displayed in blue with an underline. This is your visual cue that you can click on that field.
We plan on incorporating this 30-Day view at key areas throughout entrée, most importantly during the purchase order creation process, as this is something your buyers can greatly benefit from.
When you click on an "On Order" amount field, the following "On Order Detail" window for that day will appear:
When you click on an "Allocated" amount field, the following window will appear:
You can also click on the main Allocated and On Order fields of that item (also colored in blue with an underline) to see the Allocation or On Order window showing the total breakdown for that item:
Here is an example showing the total Allocated amount for an item:
Lastly I wanted to point out some new graphical elements that have been added related to "Temperature Zone" and an items "On Hand Status".
Regarding "Temperature Zone", we now display one of three different colored thermometers depending on the zone.
Dry: Frozen: Refrigerated / Cooler:
For the On Hand Status, we show an inventory cubes icon with one of three different colors to represent the status.
In Stock: Below Order Point: Out of Stock:
Daily Summary Dashboards
For many of you, the Daily Summary screen is where you go to get a live snapshot of either orders placed or deliveries made for a specific day, usually the current day.
In V4, we've kept the existing Daily Summary screen (now named the "Legacy Daily Summary") that so many of you are used to, but have also added three new summary dashboards based on the new V4 dashboards.
The new Order Summary Dashboard (showing the Items drilldown option at the bottom):
The new Delivery Summary Dashboard (showing the Summary Chart option at the bottom):
The new Payment Summary Dashboard (showing the Items drilldown at the bottom):
The Payment Summary Dashboard is a completely new feature in V4. It provides you with a view of your payments and credits received, how they were applied, drilldown details of the line items on the paid invoices, etc. We feel that this will become another important tool for your food distribution operation.
As most of you know by now from watching my preview video, our new Dashboards / Business Intelligence are an interactive control, permitting you to easily reorganize the layout using drag-and-drop. As a result, your data will be re-summarized according to the new layout of the column and row fields, so you can easily alter a report to display the information you need in the way they need it. Custom dashboard configurations can be saved and loaded for sharing with other users in your company.
The dashboards include full reporting capabilities, so you can easily print to paper or export to Excel or HTML. Advanced data filtering is also provided for more sophisticated users.
Extending the Dashboards to the Daily Summary was a natural progression. You can expect many more Dashboards to be added to V4. As I write this, we are wrapping our new "Top" Dashboards for your items, customers, salespeople, brands, classes, routes, vendors and order takers. You will be able to view the "Top 50", "Top 25", "Top 10" and "Top 5" for each of those categories, along with the different criteria to classify the rankings, such as sales volume, gross profit, etc.
Next we are working on the new "Buyers Stock Status" Dashboards which are based on the existing "Buyers Stock Status" reports you can currently generate in entrée. But they take this to a whole new level which your buyers will love.
Now that entrée is based on SQL, there is so much that can be done to quickly provide you with key information, that simply was not possible before. The future is bright! And intelligent!