Keeping abreast of changing technology is a challenge that distributors can find daunting. There are several technology options, small to large, that change the way the HVAC industry does business. Picking one that will be the best fit and provide the strongest business help and structure for the distributor is not always easy. To help distributors as they continue their search for best business solutions, here is a sampling of some products available. Each piece of technology can aid distributors looking to maintain, improve, and advance their businesses throughout the changing economic future.
Invoice Gateway 7.0 is the company’s newest version of its Electronic Invoice Presentment and Payment (EIPP) service. The latest version includes a streamlined user interface and numerous new features designed to simplify the payment process. According to the company, the updated interface accelerates payment workflow which helps to reduce cost and time to payment. The product provides a secure, integrated SaaS solution to manage invoicing and payment. With Invoice Gateway, users can view and pay bills electronically, download bills into their accounting software, and dispute both line-item charges and whole invoices as needed, all from a secure, brandable online portal. Other features include a streamlined three-step payment process, enhanced bill organization and filtering capabilities, and dynamic, built-in tooltips. (www.billtrust.com)
DDI Systems LLC
Inform E-Commerce is a fully integrated, real-time e-commerce solution. It provides distributors with an e-commerce interface, online catalog, order entry, and customer service desk directly fed from the existing product and customer files in their distribution management software. The software control panel provides site management from a single screen. According to the company, B-to-B e-commerce functions allow distributors to increase customer communication through the comprehensive virtual service desk. Customers can view account reports on current and past orders regardless of order method, email themselves invoices, and view payment status. The company also noted that the B-to-C e-commerce functions create new business with anonymous browsing and credit card acceptance. Anonymous browser pricing and shipment information can be set while still servicing current accounts. Advanced features calculate sales tax and shipping charges automatically, ensuring instant accuracy, and streamline processes. (www.ddisys.com)
The Industry Data Exchange (IDX) is a platform for electronic document exchange to automate order management and eliminate errors. IDX enables the exchange of business-to-business e-commerce documents with trading partners faster, easier, and more securely in comparison to traditional Value Added Networks (VANs) or paper-based methods, according to the company. Users can communicate using Electronic Data Interchange (EDI), EDIFACT, Flat Files, XML, binary, and graphic file types and utilize in-network translation to send files in one format and enable receipt in another. Additional features include an online document tracker, document reprocessing, flexible document viewing, non-EDI compatibility, and data archiving. IDX is also highly secure, with multiple layers of security, authorization protocols, and disaster recovery. According to the company, only a computer and Internet connection is required to start conducting eBusiness quickly and affordably in as little as two days. (www.idea-esolutions.com)
Infor 10x is the latest release of Infor’s business applications. According to the company, it marries modern technologies with traditional applications, providing the user a best-of-both-worlds solution. The solution addresses social business, nobility, analytics, user experience, the cloud, application development framework, and Infor ION purpose-built middleware. The manufacturer has products designed and used specifically for the HVAC distribution industry that are business-specific, scalable, and integrated solutions. The HVAC solutions include Enterprise Resource Planning, Infor Supply Chain Execution, Infor Storefront, and Enterprise Performance Management. According to the company, almost half of the top 100 HVAC and plumbing distributors in North America rely on Infor applications for measurable bottom-line results. (www.infor.com)
Wasp Barcode Technologies
Inventory Control v7 is the company’s next generation in inventory tracking software. It integrates inventory data into QuickBooks® with the optional QuickBooks Connector Module to help distributors avoid data entry duplication errors. Users can design and print labels with the inclusion of the full-featured WaspLabeler v7. They can also create drop-ship orders shipping directly from their suppliers. It is available in three editions — Standard, RF Professional, and RF Enterprise. Other features included on some of the different editions are the ability to mass update customers or items, enhanced security modules, the ability to set security policies by groups rather than by individual, as well as set access rights to reports. Users can also set up email notifications to be distributed when POs, pick orders, and checked-out items are past due or when items are understocked. (www.waspbarcode.com)