The Software Corner

Apr 18, 2007 7:33 PM  By

The director of Ventnor, NJ-based consultancy Marketing Systems Analysis, Ernie Schell takes a quarterly look around the changing software landscape for MULTICHANNEL MERCHANT/OPERATIONS + FULFILLMENT.

Jagged Peak Offers Appliance Option
The first generation of order management and fulfillment solutions (OMFS) were installed on proprietary minicomputers that the software vendor took responsibility for specifying, as it did for the installation of the system on the hardware. Coming full circle, we are about to see the advent of an “appliance” approach to OMFS, in which licensed applications are installed on open microcomputer-based hardware that the vendor installs and manages at the user’s site. Tampa-based Jagged Peak is on the leading edge of this appliance strategy. While it offers its EDGE enterprise order management system in both licensed and software-as-a-service (SaaS) versions, the soon-to-be-released appliance version provides a rapid implementation path for companies that prefer a licensed systems option and want the flexibility of opting for a bundled e-commerce platform or of integrating with a third-party e-commerce solution. As an intensively rules-based order management and fulfillment suite of applications, EDGE is well positioned for third-party fulfillment service bureaus, which have to ramp up specific functionality for new clients within tight timeframes. Based on open standards, the versatile EDGE solution can also serve as an enterprise integration platform for managing data among supply chain management, warehouse management system (WMS), enterprise resource planning (ERP), customer relationship management (CRM), and other applications; as a consolidated Web portal management platform; and as a business process management application.

Fry Acquires Pinnacle Rock
E-commerce design, development, and managed-services provider Fry has acquired San Francisco-based Pinnacle Rock Associates (PRA), which provides a multichannel order management and fulfillment system along with business and technology consulting services. PRA, which has 35 employees, will operate as a division within Fry.

Datamann Acquires The Computer Connection
Datamann, the Wilder, VT-based vendor of the MOSP order management system, acquired White River Junction, VT-based The Computer Connection. The Computer Connection will operate as a new division of Datamann, offering CounterPoint POS solutions plus software training and network support.

Dydacomp Releases MOM Version 6.0
Dydacomp has released version 6.0 of its Mail Order Manager (MOM) application. After years of providing one of the most widely installed “entry level” direct commerce order management solutions, from all reports Dydacomp has turned a corner with this new version (available on a SQL/Server version). The update has nearly 200 enhancements and many new fields and features, including a new manager’s dashboard, improved size/color management, quick-click exchange processing, and line-item sequencing controls. Item management has been enhanced, with landed cost tracking, returns management, and improved data importing tools. The system includes an address correction and verification service that applies USPS standards in real-time, with delivery-point validation updated six times a year, reducing or eliminating costly corrections from expedited shippers. Version 6.0 also boasts a new pick/pack ticket from Software Forms that provides a fully barcoded peel-off package label on top of an annotated and detailed picking section.

CommercialWare Adds More Than 30 Users
Datavantage/CommercialWare, a wholly owned subsidiary of MICROS Systems, has announced that the company has added more than 30 new clients and upgraded or extended many existing clients during the past six months, both domestically and internationally across multiple retail categories. Clients implemented or extended their investment in several solutions including Xstore Java POS, XBR Store Analytics, Balance Sales Audit, CWDirect, CWSerenade, CWStore, CWValueCard, Relate Retail CRM, Store21 Specialty Retail POS, and Tradewind Retail POS. Among the new and upgraded Datavantage/CommercialWare clients are Athleta, Bare Escentuals, Gamestop, Garnet Hill, Guitar Center, Jos. A. Bank Clothiers, King Arthur Flour, Sundance Catalog, and Vera Bradley.

Sigma Opens Second Office in India
Sigma Micro, developer of the SigmaCommerce integrated order management and fulfillment solution for catalog, online, call center, and point-of-sale direct marketers, has announced it has opened a software development center in Chandigarh, India, its second in that country. Sigma Micro opened its first development facility in India in Kochi and has been operational there since January 2005.

ProfitCenter Software Update
ProfitCenter Software has just formed a strategic alliance with service provider Inktel Direct, which will use ProfitCenter’s comprehensive Profitability Software Suite to manage all warehouse, fulfillment, and call center operations and customer relationships for its clients as a single service provider with a completely hosted and outsourced business model. Miami-based Inktel Direct services Fortune 500 companies and leading brands, providing fulfillment, call center, direct mail, and e-commerce solutions.