ProcessPro has announced the latest release of their batch manufacturing ERP solution, Premier version 10.7. This version delivers enhancements to aid manufacturers R&D teams. The company also announced improvements to the ProcessPro analytics software. This release comes less than 6 months after version 10.6 was release in March earlier this year. The previous version update was a year before that in March 2015. Customers will hope this indicates a change to update cycles. Unlike ECi Software Solutions, ProcessPro has not revealed if this is part of a new strategy.
Come and play in the sandbox
The new release features a comprehensive set of tools for a new sandbox environment. In launching the new release Daniel Erickson, Manager, Product Strategy, ProcessPro claims: “ProcessPro’s latest release provides excellent benefits to our end-users of Research & Development and Advanced Analytics in overall functionality, ease-of-use, and reporting. We’re excited for customers to experience the features of this release.”
What has Erickson so excited? The new sandbox is completely separate from the live environment. This does not mean that it is merely a copy of the live environment as there is functionality to integrate the two at appropriate points. For example, key data that is always going to remain static only needs maintaining once, in the live version. Synchronization between the live system and the R&D sandbox occurs automatically. There is also a cost update routine that allows the R&D system to work using the current costs from the live system rather than historic ones. The solution also allows costs to be altered within the R&D sandbox. For example a new prototype may have more common parts and therefore attract a discount over and above the current live system cost.
The sandbox also allows the easy creation of new and experimental R&D items, formulas recipes and BOM’s. Once the R&D process has been completed successfully this work can be copied across to the live system for further amendment. The data integration removes much of the duplication that may have been necessary before. The user can also specify which elements to transfer across.
Other enhancements to Premier 10.7
The R&D feature is not the only improvement. One improvements allows users to customise both internal and external quote forms. There is also the addition of pilot batch tracking functionality. Finally Premier 10.7 also includes an increased visibility into costing, though the details of this are not available.
ProcessPro Advanced Analytics improvements
ProcessPro Advanced Analytics has also received improvements. The latest release adds functionality for mobile reporting, complex analytical reports, enhanced metrics, and KPIs. The software includes additional templated reports and more options for managing change.
ProcessPro targets four manufacturing verticals with its software: Food and Beverage, Nutraceutical & Pharmaceutical, Cosmetics and Personal Care and Specialty Chemical. All of them will welcome the new sandbox functionality. How quickly the new functionality is adopted will determine its success. It will also give the company the ability to compete more effectively in the market. The sandbox is also going to be a welcome functional improvement for the sales team as they compete in the mid market.
Recently ProcessPro announced that had joined the Microsoft Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) program. Moving customers onto an Azure hosted environment will lower its cost base. It will be interesting to see whether this does indicate an increase in release schedules.