Meaningful relationships exist across your company and are a great resource for serving customers and improving efficiency. When workers engage with each other to solve problems and innovate processes, your business benefits and strengthens. By integrating unstructured meetings and conversations with your critical business ERP data and by enabling worker conversations digitally, you can help eliminate worker silos—giving your business a competitive advantage.

Epicor Collaborate is an enterprise-wide collaboration and productivity tool built on a cloud platform. Easy to use and intuitive with hashtags and mentions, Collaborate connects groups of workers simply. When your employee teams communicate digitally, you increase customer responsiveness and satisfaction.

Actionable Collaboration for Greater Productivity

Easily accessible across the Kinetic application, Collaborate, shifts workers from monitoring analytical dashboards and reports to being actively engaged with instant notifications from ERP processes and events. Collaborate message streams collect and communicate these messages across the enterprise. Outlier processes that often bury users in meetings or email are easily mainstreamed with the flexibility and simplicity of Collaborate—optimizing productivity. Key integrations driving worker productivity include Microsoft Teams®, Epicor IoT, Epicor Virtual Agent (EVA), and Epicor Data Discovery.

Microsoft Teams Integration enables teams with external players to connect on project details by sharing Epicor Collaborate messages.

Being notified of adverse events in ERP or directly from your equipment through Epicor IoT, can drive new levels of responsiveness and productivity.

Not every solution that improves productivity has to be complicated. Epicor Virtual Agent (EVA) delivers on simplicity through natural language to answer questions of Kinetic.

Businesses that share and coalesce around business metrics are data driven organizations that thrive on solving problems. Collaborate offers users the ability to shared Epicor Data Discovery (EDD) metrics.

Epicor Collaborate Benefits

Epicor Collaborate allows businesses to leverage their two most important resources, information and personnel, in tandem. Reap the benefits of an actively engaged workforce fueled by the enterprise data you need to make informed decisions, quickly. Those benefits allow your business to:

  • Modernize employee communication for more engaged workers
  • Boost team productivity and responsiveness
  • Experience new levels of worker efficiency
  • Share and action metrics as exceptions occur
  • Eliminate worker silos to improve customer responsiveness
  • Reduce time wasted with email and status update meetings

Easy to deploy

Both Kinetic in the cloud and Kinetic on premises are easy to integrate with Collaborate. There are three simple steps to get started.

Simple to learn—designed for business

Collaborate contains many of the same interface conventions your employees use at home on their devices. This makes Collaborate simple to use and quick to learn. Since employees can adopt the features with near immediacy, Collaborate can offer a fast return on investment. Available to work with Kinetic in the cloud or on premises, Collaborate helps all users stay in touch.

Employees log into the Kinetic Home Page and select the Collaborate tab. They can then start messaging, subscribing to ERP events, and sharing knowledge. Collaborate functions are like other leading cloud-native digital messaging tools, but the feature is designed for heightened connectivity for Kinetic and your business.

The promise of Cloud

Built on the Microsoft® Azure® platform, Collaborate is a cloud solution that leverages powerful Azure tools to deliver security and scalability for your messaging needs. More importantly, the cloud platform provides access to Collaborate on a desktop or a compatible tablet through the Epicor Home Page. Collaborate makes work happen—providing timely messages anywhere for rapid decision making.

Enterprise-wide Collaboration

Multisite, multi-company organizations need to communicate across boundaries to solve problems and remain responsive to customers. As a cloud-based solution, Epicor Collaborate delivers messaging capabilities for intercompany and inter-site conversations. Featured in this capability is the ability to create Enterprise groups that can span locations for greater business efficiency.

Share knowledge

Sharing knowledge helps businesses more easily onboard new employees and retain critical knowledge to support future operational efficiency. Making it easier for staff and departments to share information means that skills and knowledge can be pooled— leading to thorough problem solving, better project progression, and new ideas. Collaborate provides a robust repository of contextual and searchable messages to help workers find answers to repeatable customer issues, store and retrieve process knowledge, and maintain historical audits.

Operational Visibility

Subscribing to exceptions in ERP data helps business leaders respond to problems as they happen. For example, a stakeholder may subscribe to a customer or credit hold status. Once a credit hold message appears in their Collaborate message thread, stakeholders can message finance immediately to determine the reason and follow up with the customer.

Group Messaging

Employees exceedingly work in groups to drive innovation and meet customer expectations. In particular, being able to support cross-functional teams that can coalesce around a complex estimate, project, customer issue, production event whether single instance or ongoing and more. Introducing this group functionality (both public and private) is important as members are informed on a timely basis and can offer their perspective.

Microsoft Teams Integration

Microsoft Teams is an industry-leading collaboration platform that combines persistent workplace chat, video meetings, file storage, and application integration for businesses. It is widely used and sits alongside Microsoft Office 365® productivity tools. Collaborate Groups connected to Microsoft Teams to share communications across users, including external guests outside of Kinetic. Note: This feature requires Microsoft Office 365 level AD.

Custom Notifications (Change Data Capture (CDC) and BPM)

Greater responsiveness in business workflow can be more easily achieved with instant notifications guiding your processes. To offer more opportunities to build these notifications into your processes, Collaborate lets users create custom notification rules. This is achieved with the Change Data Capture (CDC) management solution.

Additionally, users can design a Business Process Management (BPM) workflow to post custom notifications in a Collaborate message stream through a new Notify Collaborate action. Users can leverage Data Directives, Method Directives, and Epicor Functions to create workflows that include the Notify Collaborate actions and the action that triggers it.

Operational Efficiency from IoT Notifications

Boosting operational oversight to deliver great performance with Epicor IoT is easier in the latest release as users can view IoT notifications within Collaborate message streams. Users can configure IoT based notifications via BPM and feeding them into Collaborate. This allows users to be notified on asset performance while collaborating with a group of stakeholders on failure situations.

Instant Answers with Epicor Virtual Agent (EVA)

EVA helps users automate mundane tasks such as looking up a contact or inventory information-all she needs is a simple text command. Integration with Collaborate supports EVA skills or commands within message streams. Ask EVA to show you a customer, and then the customer credit, and she will return richly formatted information. The experience and the skills supported are consistent with what is offered in the EVA mobile app.

File Sharing Support

Collaborate users can share files easily, selecting their preferred choice of cloud file storage system. Attaching files in the feeds and conversations speeds up teamwork in any company, and the attachment is saved in the file storage system.

Collaborate integrates with multiple cloud storage providers such as Google Drive® or Dropbox®. Epicor ECM (Enterprise Content Management) is also an option for Collaborate file storage, no matter whether Epicor ECM is Cloud or On-Premises.

Actionable EDD Metrics Drive Improved Productivity

More easily describe business challenges with EDD metrics in Collaborate. Users can leverage an EDD widget to snag and share EDD metrics, including comments that drive actions. New levels of productivity can result when metrics are shared and actioned as exceptions occur. Any key metric can be shared from sales, finance, or operations.

About Encompass Solutions

Encompass Solutions is a business and software consulting firm that specializes in ERP systems, EDI, and Managed Services support for Manufacturers. Serving small and medium-sized businesses since 2001, Encompass modernizes operations and automates processes for hundreds of customers across the globe. Whether undertaking full-scale implementation, integration, and renovation of existing systems, Encompass provides a specialized approach to every client’s needs. By identifying customer requirements and addressing them with the right solutions, we ensure our clients are equipped to match the pace of Industry.

Everyone is talking about the cloud, especially manufacturers who are evaluating a cloud ERP solution for their business. However, if you don’t quite follow what they’re saying, it comes down to this—using the cloud is using data and systems through the Internet.

How You Already Interact With Cloud Technology

While The Cloud may seem like an abstract idea, you likely already interact with and use cloud technologies every day.

  • Do you update a Facebook profile?
  • Do you check your bank balance from your phone?
  • Do you stream movies or music?
  • What about playing games online?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, you are using cloud technology.

Cloud technology has truly permeated into our everyday lives. Now ask yourself, is it as simple for businesses to leverage cloud technology? The answer is yes.

Businesses leveraging cloud technology improve operations in a number of ways. Examples include improving your cash flow, increasing business capabilities, and simplifying processes for their workforce. All these benefits are realized through the use of an access-from-anywhere platform that is more reliable than traditional ERP deployments that place hardware on-premises.

How Cloud Makes Innovating Easier

By enabling cloud technology at every level of an organization, businesses remove the anxiety associated with security, backups, and verification of backups. Offsite storage becomes a thing of the past and maintenance of hardware and software can be done away with completely. Troubleshooting and upgrades can all be handled with a fraction of the effort.
Perhaps most importantly, connectivity is more reliable in the cloud. This means teams can remain connected and productive anywhere and anytime they need.

Manufacturers questioning whether now is the time to move to the cloud, the answer is a resounding yes. Cybersecurity, IT projects, maintenance activities and more can be removed from the equation with a cloud ERP solution. This leaves your businesses to take care of the business, make time for customers, employees, and partners.

Simplicity And Dependability of a Cloud ERP Solution

On-premise ERP deployments give businesses a sense of confidence that their data is safely stored just down the hall. While that peace of mind and control is reassuring in theory, in practical terms it can be quite a drain on your IT staff. Maintaining both hardware and software is a headache most IT departments would gladly do without. Cloud enables businesses to shed the tether of physical systems in favor of a more agile and simple solution. With a cloud ERP solution, your teams can focus on running your business more efficiently and taking better care of your customers’ experience.

Cloud ERP solutions operate under the safety of redundancy. Cloud technologies store data securely in multiple data centers locally, regionally, and even globally. This dependability is designed to help businesses maintain system uptime and access no matter what adverse conditions may befall a specific region. These data centers are managed by industry professionals whose sole focus is keeping systems up and running at optimal levels. This frees up resources and capital for your business to focus on growth and improving user experiences across departments. As a result, collaboration among internal teams gets better, the complexity of your information technology resources is reduced, and overall business performance improves.

“The rise of the collaborative workforce and workspace is underway. Increasingly, tech-savvy mobile users are ready for collaborative workspaces with deep integrations to the software they use daily. Collaboration is a key element that helps create the future of work.”

– Worldwide Team Collaborative Applications Forecast, 2019–2023: Collaboration Growth Impacts the Future of Work, IDC, Doc #US44662619, August 2019.

If your business is in t he progress of growing or you want to grow, adopting a cloud ERP solution could be an easy way to increase capacity and output without taking on additional software, hardware, or IT personnel. A cloud ERP solution can be scaled up or down with ease, as well.

Savings found in the Cloud

Cloud ERP Solutions are a cost savings component of business that reduces overhead.

What’s overhead? simply put, overhead is what doesn’t make you money. This includes things like accounting, insurance, and rent.

Antiquated approaches to IT can be a huge source of spending for businesses with maintenance, update tasks, and utility bills, not to mention the extra space servers take up. When working in the cloud, the costs of doing business are driven down. Here’s how.

Reduced Cost of Ownership

Cloud computing removes upfront hardware costs, and the pay-as-you-go subscription model eliminates large initial layouts for software. Easy setup and cashflow-friendly monthly payments make it even easier to see why cloud deployments are so popular—especially when you add the fact that Epicor cloud business software deployments typically cost 25–40% less* than on-premises deployments.

Competitive Advantage

Technology allows your employees to turn on a dime. The cloud provides access to data at a user’s fingertips, ensuring that no matter your company’s size you are able to compete with enterprise-class technology. The time and money cloud computing frees up for your business translates into a lean, nimble, and competitive advantage.

Employee Productivity and Loyalty

With cloud ERP solutions, you can run your business from anywhere there’s an internet connection. Give your employees the ability to produce wherever they happen to be. This enables better work-life balance that translates to greater loyalty and output. With improved employee loyalty and buy-in, talent turns over less often, this further improves your savings in retaining talent versus having to train new employees more often.

Minimize Downtime With a Cloud ERP Solution

Downtime can cost a company dearly. Cloud ERP solutions can ensure your apps are up and running when you need them most. Cloud-based SaaS applications are proven to minimize downtime, reduce the costs that go along with it, and keep your people productive. Epicor ERP has a service level agreement of 99.5% uptime, but performs well beyond that promise with a historical uptime of 99.98%.

Safety, Stability, And Access

Backups are an integral part of any IT department. However, when your backups are stored on-site, you are vulnerable to all manner of internal and external compromise. This can include natural disasters, fire, rogue employees, malicious actors, and the list goes on. any one of these mentioned exposures could cost you irreplaceable data.

The Cloud is the only truly safe place for your backups, because they are house where natural disasters, fires, and all those other potential pitfalls can’t touch them. True backup—the safekeeping of a redundant set of data—is best left to the cloud. It’s the safest, most affordable, and most efficient way to make sure that if you lose everything, all is not lost.

When it comes to stability, cloud systems are simply more stable, better monitored, and more secure than any on-premises system. Unless you have an impenetrable data center protected by intrusion detection, fire suppression, advanced power grids, backup generators, environmental monitoring, and six separate HVAC units inspected every day—all connected by multiple T3 pipelines from multiple vendors and all in a distant geographic location—you’re not as safe as you think.

Accessibility, as in who you want to have access to your systems and who you want to keep out, is a big deal in IT. Add to that lost devices and you’ve compounded the problem. In fact, lost laptops are a billion-dollar business problem. However, the greater problem is the loss and possible theft of the sensitive data stored on those laptops. When your data is stored in the cloud, you can access it no matter what, no matter where. Not only this, but you can lock out anyone when it comes to using that device and you can remotely wipe data from lost laptops at any time.

Now, are you ready to explore the benefits of a Cloud ERP solution for your business?

Increase the speed of data flow by integrating your computer-aided design (CAD) system and your Epicor ERP solution. In doing so, you can streamline the entire product development process and eliminate the burdens of having disparate systems—freeing your engineers to focus on design and innovation.

Epicor CADLink allows engineers to create Epicor Item Master and Bill of Materials (BOM) records identical to engineering CAD data with the click of a button. The direct integration reduces manual data, data entry and clerical errors, and your production process benefits from using information that is identical to work order documentation.

Keeping your Epicor engineering data accurate and synchronized with your engineering drawings and models is critical. With Epicor CADLink, you will see significant improvements in production speed, on-time shipments, and accuracy of Epicor engineering data—with reductions in engineering cost, scrapped parts, and confusion on the shop floor.



About Encompass Solutions

Encompass Solutions is a business and software consulting firm that specializes in ERP systems, EDI, and Managed Services support for Manufacturers. Serving small and medium-sized businesses since 2001, Encompass modernizes operations and automates processes for hundreds of customers across the globe. Whether undertaking full-scale implementation, integration, and renovation of existing systems, Encompass provides a specialized approach to every client’s needs. By identifying customer requirements and addressing them with the right solutions, we ensure our clients are equipped to match the pace of Industry.

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