Blog

25 March, 2014

Is it barcode or bar-code?

Michael Burnham

Barcode or Bar Code

It amuses me that Panatrack has been in the business of developing barcode-enabled solutions for many years, yet still often debate internally over how to spell “bar-code”. In a recent update to our PanatrackerGP WMS Inventory whitepaper, we even found a few inconsistencies in the same document.

Thinking as a software guy for a moment: let’s temporarily go with barXcode, and postulate that “X” can be null.  Plus, it is fun to say barXcode, as it makes me think of labeling yappy little dogs.

Aren’t we all trained as schoolchildren to “look it up”? Well, the Oxford dictionary definition of barcode states that it is one word. Solved. It’s Craft Brew time.

Hmmm…except the Merriam-Webster dictionary claims it is “bar code”.  Well, that “authoritative dictionary plan” unravels faster than a cheap sweater.

Surely, the authoritative GS1 Organization, known as the “world’s official provider of bar code numbers for retail”, can help us. Looking on their  Need A Barcode page, I notice their inconsistent usage of “bar code“, “barcode“, and “BarCodes“. Seriously? That last one is just cheating.  

I make the following case for a single word spelling:

        • As a verb, as in “let’s barcode that Chihuahua”, it is much less confusing than “to bar <slight pause> code something”.
        • As a noun, as in “slap a barcode on that Chihuahua”, it is also less confusing without the space.
        • As an adjective, as in “that zebra looks kinda barcodey”, it just plain works.

People drive “pickup trucks”, they don’t drive “pick up trucks”. It’s a weak argument, but it seems to support my case.

The reality is that as long as people might do a web search for barcode or bar code, it’s best if we go either way. If you landed on this page because you were also confused, then it worked. Welcome to Panatrack. We create solutions to track inventory and assets using technologies such as barcoding. Or is that bar coding?

10 March, 2014

Another great Convergence show in Atlanta

Michael Burnham

Panatrack Convergence 2014We’d like to thank everyone that stopped to visit with us during the Microsoft Dynamics Convergence expo in Atlanta last week. It’s always great to visit with our partners and customers, as well as meet some new friends. 

This year’s event was held at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta. For those of us that attend the show regularly, we have been to this hall a few times before. Atlanta is a great venue for the event and the get-togethers in the evening hours. There were great keynotes and seminars, and the expo hall was as amazing as it always is.

We were delighted to receive so many positive comments on our new booth design. To quote the “A-Team” television series, I love it when a plan comes together.

See everyone in Chicago next year!

 

2 February, 2014

Panatrack participates in ISV Summit

Michael Burnham

Panatrack was delighted to participate in the annual Independent Software Vendors (ISV) Leadership Summit was held in San Juan, Puerto Rico January 26th-28th. As you likely know, an independent software vendor is a company specializing in developing software that is designed for a specific horizontal or vertical market. Microsoft Dynamics has a comprehensive ISV program and includes software for manufacturing, human resources, payroll, barcode scanning, fixed asset tracking, business intelligence and more.

The ISV Leadership Summit is a round-table gathering of leading Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) in the Microsoft Dynamics Channel. Its attendees share their business strategies ranging from leadership, sales, marketing, and business development. The goal: learn from each other and enrich each participating business.

The event was founded by Mark Rockwell of Rockton Software, who crafts solutions to make Microsoft Dynamics GP work simpler and easier. Mark explains the genesis of the ISV Leadership Summit by saying, “I wanted to get like-minded business owners together to discuss the hard realities of running businesses. Talking together, we’ve inspired one another to do things differently and shared ideas that have helped each other work differently and better. Ideas we’ve shared have even launched whole lines of business for some of us. Because we all do the same thing, we get to share how to make processes more efficient, commiserate about the challenges of business management, swap great vendor recommendations, and being a part of the Microsoft channel.”

The event involves networking between partners, sharing and creating new ideas through discussions facilitated by the summit. New this year, attendees were invited to participate in the Microsoft ISV Showcase, at Microsoft Headquarters in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The ISV Showcase gave each member of the ISV Summit the opportunity to give a brief presentation of their products and services with businesses and Microsoft partners in Puerto Rico and neighboring islands.

This year, partners participating in the event included Rockton Software, Solver, Inc., Panatrack, Horizon’s International, Olympic Systems, Integrity Data, Vicinity Manufacturing, Njevity, and GPC Systems. We gained a lot of value spending time with these other companies. We also got to spend a week where the temperature was almost 100 degrees higher than it was at home in Wisconsin. That’s a win.

 

26 November, 2013

Obtain a Team of Experts with the ISV Solution Network

Pam Burnham

Dynamics GP is a great core ERP solution. As many know, there are A LOT of add-on solutions available in the market to enhance that core solution investment .Some companies invest in a few of these solutions and for others, the investment is larger to build an enterprise solution.

One of the perceived drawbacks for a core ERP system is the number of independent solutions that a company may need to invest in to create their ideal solution. However, there is another point of view to consider. If you were to build a house, you would hire a general contractor. Consider your Dynamics GP partner the general contractor.  The general contractor would then coordinate and contract the skills to complete specific work… the electrician, the plumber, etc.  Each of these independent contractors has the specific knowledge and skills in their specialized area to get the work done right and to the current code.

Another analogy would be medical care. You may have a general family practitioner (again correlate to your Dynamics GP Partner), but if you had a specific issue, you would be referred to a specialist. There is a network of specialists that work together to provide you the specific care needed.

These analogies can be applied to the various solutions that you add to GP. By investing in companies with solutions that specialize in specific areas, you are investing in a team of experts; each with their specialized knowledge and skill. Panatrack for example, specializes in inventory and asset tracking. We can offer the extensive knowledge in that area starting with the inventory functionality available within GP, the specific mobile and barcode technology, and overall best practices. If you have complex sales tax requirements, you would want to invest in an organization with solutions specializing in tax. Need credit card processing? Wouldn’t you want to work with a company that understands the compliance and security requirements?

Working with several vendors can also seem counter-productive. However, the ISV network of solution providers can offer you a team of experts. This team is in a position not just offer you tools to make your job easier, but best practices to make your business run smoothly and efficiently. Many of the solutions use Dynamics as the host database which resulting in maintaining a seamlessly integrated system. For example, if you use requisitioning software, the end result will be the creation of the purchase order in GP. From there, you can use our PanatrackerGP Receiving transaction to label and  create the receiving transaction back to GP without the overhead of additional integration requirements. The systems are natively integrated with Dynamics as the host database.

The ISV network for Dynamics GP not only serves as an extension of the partners, but also work well with each other to deliver a unified solution. Our PanatrackerGP solution has integrations with WennSoft for tracking inventory against a job or service activity; V-Technologies StarShip, Binary Stream’s Multi-Entity Management solution; and Vicinity Manufacturing for capturing inventory issued and produced.  Even if an integration doesn’t currently exist, you will find this network of solution vendors is willing to pull together to deliver a tightly integrated solution experience to the users.

14 November, 2013

Visit us at the Arizona GPUG Regional Chapter Meeting

Michael Burnham

Join us in Phoenix for the next Regional Chapter meeting of GPUG on November 19th. Panatrack is delighted to sponsor the meeting and lunch.

All Dynamics GP users and prospects are welcome and encouraged to attend. Regional Chapters enhance your membership in GPUG by offering face-to-face interaction and knowledge-sharing with other Microsoft Dynamics GP users in your region. Join us so you can optimize the functionality, flexibility, performance and return on investment offered by GP and get better results from your GP implementation back home. Feel free to invite GP colleagues and other users within the region.

Agenda:

  • - 12:30: Lunch, Introductions – Lunch Sponsored by Panatrack
  • - 1:00: Member Showcase – I/O
  • - 1:20: Panatrack Fixed Asset and Inventory Tracking Solution
  • - 2:20: Break
  • - 2:30: Summit Review & Highlights (Roundtable Discussion)
  • - 2:45: Year-End Tips & Tricks*
  • - 3:45: Planning for February Meeting: Tentative Date, February 19
  • - 4:00: End of Meeting

Thanks to the kind organizers of this event for asking that we be part of their meeting. A bigger thanks for the weather you are providing in Arizona, which makes this trip VERY attractive for those of us in Wisconsin during November.

Sign up here: Arizona GPUG Regional Chapter Meeting

20 September, 2013

Dynamics GP partner events happening now

Michael Burnham

Wow, there’s a lot of DynamicsGP partner events in the next couple months!

We are proud to sponsor several upcoming Dynamics GP partner events throughout the United States. McGladrey, Socius, InterDyn, OTT, DFC Consultants, WennSoft and others are holding events over the next two months. You can be sure that Panatrack will be in attendance to answer any questions you may have regarding inventory and asset control.

Remember that your GP Partner plays a vital role in maintaining and supporting your ERP installation. As a Microsoft Dynamics GP Certified ISV, Panatrack is well equipped to work with you and your partner to ensure a fast and easy implementation of our robust solutions. If you are attending any of the below events, please stop by the Panatrack Booth and say hello. Our team is happy to discuss your current inventory management struggles and investigate how our solution may be able to help streamline and simplify your process.

Here’s a sample of the upcoming events.

Please check our event calendar for the latest updates.

19 August, 2013

Panatrack Earns “Certified for Microsoft Dynamics GP 2013” Distinction for WMS Inventory and Asset Solutions

Michael Burnham

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Panatrack announced today that its Panatracker GP solution for tracking inventory, assets and field sales is now certified for Microsoft Dynamics GP version 2013, which signifies that the solution has met Microsoft Corp.’s highest standard for partner-developed software. By successfully meeting all certification requirements, Panatracker GP can now carry the distinct Certified for Microsoft Dynamics logo.

Certified for Microsoft Dynamics GP 2013

Solutions that are certified for Microsoft Dynamics have demonstrated development quality and compatibility with the Microsoft Dynamics product on which they run by passing rigorous software testing for Microsoft Dynamics performed by VeriTest (a service of Lionbridge). In addition, the Microsoft Dynamics partner must have customers who are successfully using the certified solution and are willing to recommend it. The partner must also be a Certified Partner in the Microsoft Partner Program and demonstrate competency in ERP solutions.

For customers, Certified for Microsoft Dynamics helps identify Microsoft Dynamics solutions that have been tested for compatibility, meet high quality standards, and are successfully used by existing customers. This certification represents a significant step in elevating the standard for partner-developed software solutions for industry-specific business applications. By highlighting these solutions, Microsoft also creates new opportunities for partners to expand their reseller channel and to better promote their packaged Microsoft Dynamics solution for customers.

“This milestone demonstrates Panatrack’s commitment to delivering the most effective business solutions and expertise for our customers,” said Fred Studer, general manager Microsoft Dynamics. “We congratulate Panatrack for meeting Microsoft’s highest standards of quality.”

Panatrack provides solutions for tracking inventory and assets through the use of barcodes and other data-collection technologies. With customers around the world, the Panatracker GP product line attaches to Microsoft Dynamics GP and helps leading global companies across several industries achieve success.

“Panatrack is committed to providing solid and cost-effective solutions for the Dynamics community, and achieving the Certified for Microsoft Dynamics GP 2013 designation is a reflection of that commitment,” said Michael Burnham, President of Panatrack. “The validation process demonstrates our strategy for tightly-integrated solutions to track our customers’ inventory and assets”.

For additional information on Panatrack and their products, visit their website at www.panatrack.com.

About Panatrack, Inc.

Panatrack specializes in solutions for tracking inventory, assets, and activities. Using data-capture technologies such as barcode, RFID, and mobile handheld computers, they create solutions to track the transactions that are critical to efficient business operations.

 

5 August, 2013

Using Smart Lists In GP

Barbi Kaminski

Smart Lists in Dynamics GP are a very flexible reporting and inquiry tool.  There are several ‘canned’ Smart Lists already set up.  This tool allows you to create a new Smart List from scratch, or you can work on an existing list to add the fields you need for your reporting.  The search criteria options can be saved or modified for each inquiry for quick access to reporting. Add up to four search options and the ability to add field comparison searches. As an add-on solution to GP, Panatrack suggests using Smart Lists as an additional tool for keeping track of your inventory and assets.

For Fixed Assets, PanatrackerGP provides the ability to physically track assets.  Since GP remains the host asset database, Smart Lists can be used as the key reporting tool. A Smart List can be added to track new asset additions. As an example, new assets may be initially assigned an “unassigned’ Class ID.  This is often recommended as the user adding the asset may not know the proper Class assignment.  The final assignment would be handled by the finance department as they assign the additional financial details directly in GP.  By creating a Smart List, there is now a working list of new assets for the finance or accounting department to reference and work from.  Also for Fixed Assets, validation is completed by a physical location.  Once the physical location is validated from the PanatrackerGP application, a Smart List can be run for that specific location to identify and maintain reports on the physical inventory completed.  A report can be saved in Excel or Word or simply printed and saved.

SmartlList

Smart Lists are also a great tool for additional inventory reporting.  PanatrackerGP handles the inventory-related transactions; however when adding inventory management to your environment, explore the various Smart List reports that can be created and used to maximize your efficiency.  The PanatrackerGP application offers multiple Flex Fields (user-definable fields) that can be set up and used to capture additional data that may not be native to GP.  Since all PanatrackerGP transactions are stored in a journaling (SQL) database, including the GP transaction numbers, Smart List Builder can be used to create customized reports and include that additional collected data.

5 August, 2013

Announcing integration to Manufacturing

Alex Rode

Panatrack is pleased to announce the addition of a Manufacturing Module to our PanatrackerGP Inventory Solution for Dynamics GP.

We are excited to introduce three integration target options: Vicinity Manufacturing, Horizon Manufacturing, & the native Dynamics GP Manufacturing. Our new module adds the ability to accurately capture the primary inventory-related transactions for manufacturing: Raw Material Issue and Finished Goods Receiving.  The Issue transaction provides the ability to record inventory used or issued to a manufacturing order or batch, thus providing real-time access and validation to the quantity needed.  Create Production Unit, records receipt of the finished goods and can automatically print the item bar code label.

This new module works together with our standard PanatrackerGP core inventory solution, allowing you to receive against a purchase order, transfer and move inventory, perform stock counts, track order fulfillment and much more.

PanatrackerGP Manufacturing

Maintaining accurate records is especially critical for trace and recall when lot tracking is involved. This is common in formula-based manufacturing environments often served by Vicinity Manufacturing.  PanatrackerGP validates against Vicinity’s batch setup for inventory requirements on issues and the GP inventory for available inventory.  Panatracker provides real-time access to production requirements and tracks progress in real-time for a streamlined and integrated solution.

PanatrackerGP provides a tool to capture and record inventory-related transactions with direct integration for real-time validation to GP Manufacturing.  The data captured from PanatrackerGP is managed with an infrastructure added within GP.  Captured transaction are processed smoothly.  This integration to GP Manufacturing supports GP 2010 and newer.

Horizon Manufacturing has added an infrastructure used by PanatrackerGP for integration to their manufacturing system.  The data captured is processed efficiently and accurately and submitted to Horizon for processing.

For our customers that have more-basic needs to track manufactured products, consider starting with Dynamics GP Bill-of-Material and Assemblies.  PanatrackerGP has an Assembly transaction which provides the ability to automate the process — including automated item label printing and the ability to identify components used.

Implementing an embedded WMS solution has never been easier.  Please contact us at (262) 361-4950 or Sales@panatrack.com to find our more or to schedule a complimentary web demo.

31 July, 2013

How does Microsoft Dynamics GP & Panatrack work together to track your assets?

Alex Rode

Microsoft Dynamics GP has a Fixed Asset module that provides a company a simple way to track their assets.  Did you know that GP also can track the physical details of your assets as well as financial?  As a standard, the asset record includes Location, Physical Location, Structure (often used to identify a department), and Custodian Assignment.  In addition to these standard fields, there are 15 user fields that can be defined on a company level.  Up to four fields can be set in a date format and 10 out of the 15 fields can have associated look up lists defined.  The last 5 fields are currency fields for additional financial tracking.

UF-FA

These user fields can be used to track additional characteristics of an asset.  Some examples include details such as storage capacity or operating system for a computer.  Additional location level tracking can be defined.  Set up a check-out structure.  Tailor a list of department assignments instead of using the Structure field.  Define PO, vendor or other purchasing details.  The user fields can be defined for additional assignments, status, or characteristics.

Keeping up-to-date track of the physical definition of assets can be a challenge, especially if they change periodically.  Attempts to manually record changes with paper-based tracking often fail making asset record details fall out of date.  Panatrack offers an add-on solution to take tracking assets to a mobile computer using bar code technology.  The ability to update physical details, including the 15 user fields, makes PanatrackerGP an instrumental tool to fully utilize the tracking features of the GP Fixed Asset module.

The PanatrackerGP  application provides access to the physical details of the asset record through a mobile interface to capture updates of the asset at the point the asset is handled.  The PanatrackerGP application can also be used to capture the key details of new assets and automatically create the asset record in GP.  The assets can then be moved or assigned immediately to maintain accurate records right from the start.  Financial details can then be set up directly in GP by the finance or accounting department. Your asset records are maintained in a single database.  With limited access to the asset record details by those actually making the addition or the updates to the asset records, you can easily manage the physical details securely.

FA-Screen

To find out more about adding physical tracking of your assets using Dynamics GP and PanatrackerGP, visit our website at www.panatrack.com. Ready to take control of your assets? Contact Panatrack to schedule a complimentary web demo of our PanatrackerGP Fixed Asset solution for Dynamics GP.