Browsing articles tagged with " ACA"

Grape Escape Showcases Apparancy and SYSPRO

Jul 22, 2014   //   by admin   //   Blog  //  No Comments

RFG Perspective: Cost efficiencies, elimination of redundancy, and delivery of timely accurate information to users anywhere, anytime and on any device remains a top priority across the business landscape. In the manufacturing and distribution sectors U.S. business executives in small- and medium-sized (SMBs) companies have struggled like Sisyphus and the boulder to maintain their organizations; many have been snuffed out entirely. A new survey showing that manufacturing in the US is on the rise should spur cautious optimism among business executives. However, now more than ever these businesses need business process management (BPM) and/or enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions to remove cost and redundancy and deliver just in time and timely information to executives and their staff wherever, whenever and on whatever device. In the healthcare sector the passage of the Affordable Care Act has been met with both criticism and praise. Its future is uncertain. What is certain, however, is that the Veterans Administration scandal has focused the lens on a persistent, growing problem: Veterans have to file a morass of forms to claim benefits they both need and deserve. The implementation of innovative technologies aimed at untangling and simplifying Veterans’ benefits claims and scheduling processes as well as a cultural change that supports the technology would be a giant leap forward for these praiseworthy and selfless individuals.

 

The JRocket Marketing Grape Escape ® 2014 provided industry analysts with a rare insider’s peek at two of today’s innovative, nimble, and multi-faceted technology vendors. The three-day event was a tour de force that showcased Apparancy and SYSPRO, two disruptive leading-edge companies that are reshaping their industry sectors.

 

Apparancy

Apparancy is delivering on its Know. Do. Prove. value proposition with an automated business process platform that initially aims at helping healthcare organizations connect multiple existing systems and data sources to achieve specific goals. At this year’s event, Karen Watts, CEO of Apparancy, expounded on how Apparancy can help these organizations identify disjointed workflows, and eliminate redundancies and data overlap, by combining data and processes into single-purpose role-based views that eliminate the need to rip and replace.

The big news was Ms. Watts’ announcement – appropriately – on Memorial Day that Apparancy had acquired usage rights to an earlier software product “TurboVet,” which had already catalogued some five thousand plus Veteran’s Administration forms.  Apparancy has begun work on updating and integrating these forms into its platform with the end game of launching VetApprove in Q4 2014. If necessity is the mother of invention then, Apparancy, powered by Corefino, is filling a market vacuum with its VetApprove Veterans benefit product. VetApprove will revolutionize the way Veterans will be able to access their entitled benefits.

VetApprove will enable 22 million Veterans to apply for entitled healthcare, employment, education, state compensation, and disability benefits, as well as for other entitlement programs such as funeral benefits extended to spouses of veterans. This service will be offered to veterans free of charge. Additionally, it can become the underlying workflow management platform that would enable the VA to efficiently process applications, schedule services, and monitor and manage its operations, which are still antediluvian and lack accurate measurement metrics.

 

SYSPRO

 Joey Benadretti, President of SYSPRO USA, announced a turnabout in US manufacturing trends. Citing MAPI survey findings, Mr. Benadretti pointed to a potential upswing in the future of US manufacturing. The study, which covered the period from 2006-2012, showed 19 states experiencing double-digit growth above the national average with the majority of those in the western states. He also pointed out that US manufacturing is moving from Mexican Border States (except Texas) to those states that are closer to the Canadian border. Output in two sectors is also accelerating and to address these trends SYSPRO is expanding into the automotive and energy manufacturing sub-industries.

On the product side the company’s new SYSPRO Espresso provides an enterprise mobile ecosystem that can be tailored to satisfy front-end and back-end requirements. Features of the highly anticipated SYSPRO Espresso will include new drag and drop technology and mass customization for any device with an emphasis on being device agnostic. This ground-breaking technology supports single sign-on, is device-agnostic, and allows users to access multiple applications on multiple devices using a roaming profile so they can switch from one device to another and instantly connect. This creates an advantage for both the customer as well as SYSPRO, as the millennial generation will want to access ERP on their mobile devices.  These tech-savvy users will also want to customize which apps they will want to see on their mobile phones, tablets, etc. due to the device real estate.

Not surprisingly, SYSPRO currently has one of the highest customer retention rates in the industry. Mr. Benadretti confidently remarked that his company will remain on the cutting edge of technology providing customers with product flexibility and low-cost solutions.

 

RFG POV: Apparancy and SYSPRO unveiled substantive, cutting edge, and innovatively disruptive technology solutions. Apparancy’s targeted focus will enable the beleaguered VA to begin to meet the urgent needs of its Veterans, while SYSPRO is enabling manufacturing executives to meet customer demands as the industry undergoes an uptick in growth and a geographic shift. Business, government and IT executives should proactively harness spot-on technology solutions to solve exigent business problems, respond expeditiously to clients, and manage change well into the future so that their organizations continue to satisfy customers and remain relevant as markets evolve.

Additional relevant research and consulting services are available. Interested readers should contact Client Services to arrange further discussion or interview with Ms. Maria DeGiglio, MA, and Principal Analyst.

Predictions: People & Process Trends – 2014

Jan 20, 2014   //   by admin   //   Blog  //  No Comments

RFG Perspective: The global economic headwinds in 2014, which constrain IT budgets, will force business and IT executives to more closely examine the people and process issues for productivity improvements. Externally IT executives will have to work with non-IT teams to improve and restructure processes to meet the new mobile/social environments that demand more collaborative and interactive real-time information. Simultaneously, IT executives will have to address the data quality and service level concerns that impact business outcomes, productivity and revenues so that there is more confidence in IT. Internally IT executives will need to increase their focus on automation, operations simplicity, and security so that IT can deliver more (again) at lower cost while better protecting the organization from cybercrimes.

As mentioned in the RFG blog “IT and the Global Economy – 2014” the global economic environment may not be as strong as expected, thereby keeping IT budgets contained or shrinking. Therefore, IT executives will need to invest in process improvements to help contain costs, enhance compliance, minimize risks, and improve resource utilization. Below are a few key areas that RFG believes will be the major people and process improvement initiatives that will get the most attention.

Automation/simplicity – Productivity in IT operations is a requirement for data center transformation. To achieve this IT executives will be pushing vendors to deliver more automation tools and easier to use products and services. Over the past decade some IT departments have been able to improve productivity by 10 times but many lag behind. In support of this, staff must switch from a vertical and highly technical model to a horizontal one in which they will manage services layers and relationships. New learning management techniques and systems will be needed to deliver content that can be grasped intuitively. Furthermore, the demand for increased IT services without commensurate budget increases will force IT executives to pursue productivity solutions to satisfy the business side of the house. Thus, automation software, virtualization techniques, and integrated solutions that simplify operations will be attractive initiatives for many IT executives.

Business Process Management (BPM) – BPM will gain more traction as companies continue to slice costs and demand more productivity from staff. Executives will look for BPM solutions that will automate redundant processes, enable them to get to the data they require, and/or allow them to respond to rapid-fire business changes within (and external to) their organizations. In healthcare in particular this will become a major thrust as the industry needs to move toward “pay for outcomes” and away from “pay for service” mentality.

Chargebacks – The movement to cloud computing is creating an environment that is conducive to implementation of chargebacks. The financial losers in this game will continue to resist but the momentum is turning against them. RFG expects more IT executives to be able to implement financially-meaningful chargebacks that enable business executives to better understand what the funds pay for and therefore better allocate IT resources, thereby optimizing expenditures. However, while chargebacks are gaining momentum across all industries, there is still a long way to go, especially for in-house clouds, systems and solutions.

Compliance – Thousands of new regulations took effect on January 1, as happens every year, making compliance even tougher. In 2014 the Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare) kicked in for some companies but not others; compounding this, the U.S. President and his Health and Human Services (HHS) department keep issuing modifications to the law, which impact compliance and compliance reporting. IT executives will be hard pressed to keep up with compliance requirements globally and to improve users’ support for compliance.

Data quality – A recent study by RFG and Principal Consulting on the negative business outcomes of poor data quality finds a majority of users find data quality suspect. Most respondents believed inaccurate, unreliable, ambiguously defined, and disorganized data were the leading problems to be corrected. This will be partially addressed in 2014 by some users by looking at data confidence levels in association with the type and use of the data. IT must fix this problem if it is to regain trust. But it is not just an IT problem as it is costing companies dearly, in some cases more than 10 percent of revenues. Some IT executives will begin to capture the metrics required to build a business case to fix this while others will implement data quality solutions aimed at fixing select problems that have been determined to be troublesome.

Operations efficiency – This will be an overriding theme for many IT operations units. As has been the case over the years the factors driving improvement will be automation, standardization, and consolidation along with virtualization. However, for this to become mainstream, IT executives will need to know and monitor the key data center metrics, which for many will remain a challenge despite all the tools on the market. Look for minor advances in usage but major double-digit gains for those addressing operations efficiency.

Procurement – With the requirement for agility and the move towards cloud computing, more attention will be paid to the procurement process and supplier relationship management in 2014. Business and IT executives that emphasize a focus on these areas can reduce acquisition costs by double digits and improve flexibility and outcomes.

Security – The use of big data analytics and more collaboration will help improve real-time analysis but security issues will still be evident in 2014. RFG expects the fallout from the Target and probable Obamacare breaches will fuel the fears of identity theft exposures and impair ecommerce growth. Furthermore, electronic health and medical records in the cloud will require considerable security protections to minimize medical ID theft and payment of HIPAA and other penalties by SaaS and other providers. Not all providers will succeed and major breaches will occur.

Staffing – IT executives will do limited hiring again this year and will rely more on cloud services, consulting, and outsourcing services. There will be some shifts on suppliers and resource country-pool usage as advanced cloud offerings, geopolitical changes and economic factors drive IT executives to select alternative solutions.

Standardization –More and more IT executives recognize the need for standardization but advancement will require a continued executive push and involvement. In that this will become political, most new initiatives will be the result of the desire for cloud computing rather than internal leadership.

SLAs – Most IT executives and cloud providers have yet to provide the service levels businesses are demanding. More and better SLAs, especially for cloud platforms, are required. IT executives should push providers (and themselves) for SLAs covering availability, accountability, compliance, performance, resiliency, and security. Companies that address these issues will be the winners in 2014.

Watson – The IBM Watson cognitive system is still at the beginning of the acceptance curve but IBM is opening up Watson for developers to create own applications. 2014 might be a breakout year, starting a new wave of cognitive systems that will transform how people and organizations think, act, and operate.

RFG POV: 2014 will likely be a less daunting year for IT executives but people and process issues will have to be addressed if IT executives hope to achieve their goals for the year. This will require IT to integrate itself with the business and work collaboratively to enhance operations and innovate new, simpler approaches to doing business. Additionally, IT executives will need to invest in process improvements to help contain costs, enhance compliance, minimize risks, and improve resource utilization. IT executives should collaborate with business and financial executives so that IT budgets and plans are integrated with the business and remain so throughout the year.

Major Advances in BPM and ERP

Dec 23, 2013   //   by admin   //   Blog  //  No Comments

RFG Perspective: Business executives in small- and medium-sized (SMBs) as well as those in rapidly-changing large organizations can be at a disadvantage compared to their counterparts in relatively staid organizations. They must juggle a myriad of challenges, oftentimes without automated processes, usually because traditional ERP solutions either cannot be modified easily or the price point is prohibitive. These executives need business process management (BPM) and/or enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions that will automate redundant processes, enable them to get to the data they require, and/or allow them to respond to rapid-fire business changes within (and external to) their organizations.

At the 2013 JRocket Marketing Analyst Road Show in Boston, Massachusetts three innovative disruptive technology vendors made announcements that can enable business executives in optimizing their business processes. These game-changing vendors are:
Apparancy, the sister company of Corefino and powered by Corefino’s 500 plus pre-built cloud-based Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) process framework, made its debut. Apparancy BPM solutions will initially target healthcare-related challenges faced by both enterprises and providers, and other areas in desperate need of quantum leaps in business process improvements.
SYSPRO is transforming the manufacturing/distribution sector through its unprecedented rapidly-deployed and specialized solutions for industry micro-verticals both on-premise and in the cloud.
UNIT4 is a global ERP solution provider that is expanding its offerings to Businesses Living IN Change (BLINC) ™; businesses that are changing rapidly due to mergers and acquisitions, global expansion, compliance, reorganization, etc.).

Apparancy

Today, executives must transform themselves into business process visionaries to guide their organizations into a sustainable and thriving future. Executives across the enterprise and in particular in the administrative side of healthcare, spend inordinate amounts of time on redundant and repetitive processes, distracting them from the real work at hand, which costs their organizations millions of dollars annually.

Market newcomer, Apparancy delivers BPM expertise to vendors with an automated, compliance-centric, and holistic business process workflow framework. Apparancy’s previously introduced cloud-based sister company Corefino, has already proven that its 500-plus process framework can save organizations from 25 to 50 percent or more over costs attached to their current workflow frameworks.

Apparancy customers get pre-built workflows to solve specific issues, such as compliance to Affordable Care Act (ACA) mandates, in a platform that sits on top of existing data systems, and that can then be continuously (and easily) updated and modified. The cloud-based SaaS model is proven (based on the five-year experiences of sister company Corefino) to support legal compliance while delivering substantial measurable ROI.

Apparancy’s workflow platform minimizes and simplifies state-, federal-, and industry- mandated compliance. The framework vets data and marries systems of record with systems of engagement to make business processes accurate and auditable. In essence, the Apparancy solution enables the any device, anywhere, anytime paradigm to be applied to pre-configured business process workflows – an industry first.

Executives must be able to confidently manage, sustain, and grow their organizations well into the future –as well as remain compliant. Apparancy can provide these organizations with the information they need anytime, anywhere as well as the detailed-as-necessary visibility into internal workflows without having to increase talent acquisition. Enterprise human resources (HR) executives and healthcare providers dealing with new legislation are key areas under extreme stress for which Apparancy will provide much-needed support.

SYSPRO

In a super-sized world mid-market business executives have learned that “bigger is not always better.” The answer to complex business problems is not a larger, more complex ERP solution. Moreover, one size does not fit all. This is especially true in manufacturing and distribution, in which consolidation, outsourcing, and off-shoring have become de rigueur. In addition, regulations change continuously and large retailer organizations often define the standards which SMB manufacturers/distributers must follow. This has become increasingly more challenging, driving many out of business.

For business executives to respond to change with agility as well as grow their businesses, they require an ERP vendor with solutions that go beyond simply targeting the manufacturing and distribution verticals. They need a vendor solution that drills down into the business, finance, technology, and regulatory challenges of specific micro-verticals, such as food and beverage, medical devices, electronics, or machinery and equipment.

At the 2013 Analyst Road Show, SYSPRO, a best-of-breed ERP solution for SMB manufacturers/distributers, announced the SYSPRO USA BRAIN BOOST program, part of the U.S. team’s successful “Einstein” market strategy. The four-point initiative continues to deliver on SYSPRO’s 35–year legacy of providing standards-based technology, multi-tiered architectures, and scalability along with an agile user interface. This enables businesses executives to continuously and swiftly adapt to market, standards, and compliance fluctuations.

United States manufacturing and distribution sectors have undergone sector-shattering changes. Many have been unable to adapt and have been forced to close. To remain in the game and be continuously viable, it is paramount for manufacturing and business executives to partner with a reliable, customer-focused, and future-directed vendor.

UNIT4

Business executives in fast-changing organizations or those with highly complex financial reporting structures are often at the mercy of rigid two-dimensional systems that do not allow for nimble access to, and manipulation of, financial data. In addition, many of the widely-installed ERP systems are prohibitively expensive to install, maintain, and then continuously modify to allow for this kind of agility.

The promise of post-implementation business flexibility/agility from larger ERP vendors has in many cases not been fulfilled. UNIT4 has found itself in the enviable position of being the replacement product for many high-end high-cost ERP solutions that failed to meet customer needs and expectations and cost customers millions of dollars. UNIT4 is a least-cost ERP/financial solution provider that has successfully shifted its model to the cloud (without a dip in revenues). The entire acquisition and installation cost for UNIT4 software was typically the same as that of a one-year provider license for a competitor ERP solution and that is just the beginning of the savings.

At the December 2013 Analyst Road Show UNIT4 made several announcements including the launch of two financial performance products in the North American Market (Cash Flow and Financial Consolidation) and a new change-supporting in-memory analytics solution. Recently IDC, a global market intelligence firm conducted a survey sponsored by UNIT4 of 167 IDC customers surrounding ERP purchase, implementation, maintenance, upgrade, and re-implementation. Significant observations of the survey include: “UNIT4 customers spent average of 55 percent less than the general ERP community on supporting business change…UNIT4 customers also reported having to make moderate to substantial system change only 25 percent of the time for mergers and acquisitions…” compared to 64 percent of non-UNIT4 ERP customers.

It behooves business executives to take a closer look at the direct and indirect costs – as well as the business impacts – associated with making changes to their ERP systems. Executives who wish to cost-effectively leverage their ERP systems should consider comparing the total cost of ownership (TCO) and return on investment (ROI) of their existing solution to that of an alternative ERP vendor.

Summary

The December 2013 Analyst Road Show showcased three disruptive technology vendors with three different foci: Apparancy is poised to have a significant positive and indispensible impact on the healthcare sector because it will provide healthcare executives (and enterprises conforming to new healthcare legislation) with a SaaS-deployed, streamlined, and cost-conscious solution. SYSPRO continues to be the champion of customized and quickly deployable ERP solutions for SMB manufacturers and distributers. UNIT4 solutions are designed to enable executives to embrace business change – simply, quickly, and cost-effectively.

RFG POV: All disruptive technology vendors herein are primed to enable their customers to not only remain viable and be competitive, but to experience sustained revenue growth. Business executives, whether across the enterprise, in healthcare, SMB manufacturing/distribution, or larger but fast-changing organizations must look beyond solving today’s business and IT problems. They must look to the future and be able to predict as well as respond nimbly and effectively to financial, market, and policy changes – well into the next two decades. Executives who possess business acumen should select long-term trusted vendor partners that will enable them to not only respond agilely to change but to do so faster than their competitors.

Blog written by Ms. Maria DeGiglio, Principal Analyst