Epicor Integrated Service Estimator Promotion

Epicor is happy to announce the winners of the January 2018 Epicor ISE drawing—an ongoing sweepstakes promotion for automotive service providers using the Epicor Integrated Service Estimator (ISE) solution. The contest is co-sponsored by Innova Electronics Corporation. The January first-place prize winner, Dan Pennington of Express Oil Change & Tire Engineers, Tampa, Fla., will receive an Innova 5160 CarScan PRO scan tool, and second-place prize winner Christopher Price of Flagship FastLube, Pearl City, Hawaii, will receive an Innova 5100 CarScan ABS/SRS tool.

“The Epicor Integrated Service Estimator sweepstakes is a great incentive for shops to take full advantage of the ISE solution for every mechanical repair and preventive maintenance job,” said Stephen Gannon, senior director, automotive product management and product development, Epicor. “ISE can help shops of all sizes increase revenue and business efficiency by eliminating time-intensive manual and phone-based estimating and sourcing processes. Congratulations to Dan and Christopher as our latest winners of professional-grade diagnostic tools from Innova.”

Through the promotion, which continues through May 31, 2018, businesses automatically earn one free sweepstakes entry with each order generated and completed through the ISE solution. Epicor will award a professional-grade Innova scan tool to each of two Epicor ISE customers per month. Visit www.epicor.com/ISEsweeps for program rules and alternative form of entry.

Used by thousands of tire dealerships, oil-and-lube facilities, transmission service business, tune-up specialists, and general repair shops, Epicor ISE supplies users with all the necessary information to identify, price, and source any of thousands of replacement parts and accurately estimate labor for virtually any repair or maintenance service job—all without picking up the telephone.

The Epicor ISE solution is powered by the Epicor industry-leading replacement parts database, as well as popular repair and maintenance packages, an aftermarket flat-rate labor guide, OEM-recommended vehicle service intervals information, a VIN decoder, cross-reference parts database, and more. In addition, an optional, mobile “Smart Inspection” feature is designed to improve service bay productivity by allowing technicians to record the condition of key vehicle systems and components during comprehensive, guided inspections. The solution can be used in conjunction with most leading shop management systems or as a standalone business-building tool.

To learn more about the ISE solution and the sweepstakes promotion, contact your Epicor representative or visit www.epicor.com/ISEsweeps.

Posted by the Epicor Social Media Team

About Encompass Solutions

Encompass Solutions is a business and software consulting firm that specializes in ERP systems, EDI, and Managed Services support for Manufacturers and Distributors. 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.


Encompass and Bezlio partner on many projects aimed at enhancing performance through better utilization of barcode systems. For years the gold standard on the shop floor has been to use dedicated barcode scanners to replace time-consuming and error-prone manual keyed entry. Unfortunately, many mobile applications require the user to verify that they are in the correct field prior to scanning a barcode and then re-checking after the scan to ensure that the correct data was entered into the correct field. This removes some of the efficiency of the system because it requires the user to be constantly going between the handheld unit and the task that they are performing.

Adding Field Qualifiers For Barcodes’ Labels

The first efficiency that you can add is by adding field qualifiers to your barcode labels. These can then be interpreted and the data can be automatically filled into the correct data fields instead of relying on the user to have the correct fields selected. Most customers benefit from adding an automated process in their purchase order receipt process to print off an internal label which can be added onto any raw material received. This process ensures a consistent label format for all internal transactions.

The below carton label is printed by the customer as a finished good label, they have listed their part number, job number that produced it, and the quantity in the carton. By having this information to perform inventory movements, pick for shipping or assign a product to a shipment the user can simply scan the three barcodes, have it entered into the correct fields automatically, and complete whatever transaction they are performing.

singleBox    

Adding Non-Visual, Dynamic Feedback

The next efficiency that can be added is providing non-visual feedback to the user. When the user has scanned the necessary data to perform the transaction, you can add an audio or vibration cue for them so that they can focus more on the task than providing constant visual verification of the process. 

These simple changes can provide a dramatic improvement of data integrity and employee efficiency for shop floor operations, but to quote Steve Jobs “one more thing…”

Most modern handheld devices including smartphones or the latest generation of mobile computers for shop floor applications such as the Zebra TC7x and TC5x series include a camera. Now while shop floor selfies may not have a use yet, the camera can still add substantial value to shop floor processing efficiency.

Many of us have used the barcode scanning applications on a smartphone, the problem is that they are much slower than a traditional barcode scanner, they are unwieldy to use, and are not appropriate for the most part in a shop floor environment due to these issues. But that is for scanning one barcode, instead of using the camera you can scan all of the barcodes at once. Using our customer barcode at the top, let’s say to add that box to a picking process the user would need to scan the 3 individual barcodes to pick that box as they put it into a cart. Using that exact image above, we can extract all 3 barcodes our simultaneously and then by using either their data qualifiers or by using their relative locations on the label we can pick with a single operation.

Now scanning efficiency with data qualifiers and a quality feedback mechanism to the user means that often times scanning a single box with a dedicated barcode scanner will be quicker than taking a picture, but there is nothing that limits the transaction to a single box. Take for instance the illustration below:

multiBox

Scanning each of those barcodes although efficient would mean that you would have to perform a transaction for each box. By using the camera we could either choose to perform that transaction on all of them simultaneously, or provide the user with a touch based interface where we present all of the data that we gathered from the image (each box) and allow them to select the boxes that they would like to perform the transaction on. This increases process efficiency dramatically by having a single step to perform many complex operations.

barPhone

In this case, working from our photo we’ve extracted all of the labels that were visible. From there we’ve created a mobile UI in the Ionic framework allowing the user to select the cartons they would like to pick and pick all of them in a single operation.

Hopefully, this inspires some of you out there to look at what else mobile devices can do to increase employee efficiency for shop floor operations. If you have any thoughts or questions please feel free to reach out and we’ll help however we can!

About Encompass Solutions

Encompass Solutions is a business and software consulting firm that specializes in ERP systems, EDI, and Managed Services support for Manufacturers and Distributors. 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.