By David Sims
David at firstcoffee d*t biz
The news as of the first coffee this morning, and the music is Arlo Guthrie's Amigo album. You've all heard of Alice's Restaurant, but musically this is his best. Get this one, add in "Comin' Into Los Angeles" and "City of New Orleans," okay, "Alice's Restaurant," a handful of others and there's your essential Arlo right there:
Medford, Oregon-based Harry & David Operations Corp., a premium gourmet food retailer known especially for , has selected SAP for Retail solutions to develop a scalable, integrated IT platform.
"It's a real peach of a program," a Harry & David officials should have said, but alas, didn't.
Harry & David officials said they selected SAP over Oracle, as it looks to "gain greater long-term efficiencies and visibility into its retail and wholesale businesses."
The company is one of the nation's oldest catalog mail-order companies and currently operates stores in 34 states. The company's signature fruits, baked goods and confections and hallmark gift box towers have been a staple of gift giving for more than 70 years.
Believing the company is "poised for tremendous growth, both as a direct retailer and as a wholesaler to numerous retail outlets," Joe Foley, CIO, Harry & David Holdings, Inc. said the seasonality of their business demands "a platform that can rapidly scale."
Harry & David will begin using the product with food and beverage capabilities, followed by SAP ERP Financials.
Convergys Corporation has announced a "direct response contract" with Rosetta Stone, the publisher of Rosetta Stone language-learning software.
Rosetta Stone wants Convergys to handle high volume calls with agents and a routing platform that directs calls based on the unique campaign profile. Convergys began providing inbound customer care and sales support for Rosetta Stone in December 2006.
Basically it's a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) services deal for the Cincinnati-headquartered outsourced services provider.
Rosetta Stone is a popular language-learning software in the world, used by millions of people in 150 countries. The company issues products in 30 languages. Inc. Magazine has named Rosetta Stone Inc. one of the 500 fastest-growing companies in the United States, and for the third year Deloitte and Touche has named it one of the fasted-growing technology companies in Virginia.
Access Commerce, a vendor of e-commerce and CRM software, has announced Cameleon EasyQuote for salesforce.com's AppExchange.
Cameleon EasyQuote for Salesforce is an on-demand quotation system to help sales teams with the opportunity-to-order process, providing quotes and orders, shorter quotation cycle times and improved win rates.
Incorporating Web 2.0 technologies such as AJAX, Cameleon EasyQuote provides an advanced quotation spreadsheet, catalog search, product and service configuration, pricing and promotion application and proposal generation.
Cameleon EasyQuote can be customized without programming. This allows the user interface, business processes and proposal documents to be tailored to meet various customer requirements.
Wayne, Pennsylvania-based Deacom, Inc. has announced that SEM Products, Inc., located in Charlotte, NC, is implementing the Deacom Integrated Accounting and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Software System to manage all facets of its auto body paint, adhesive, and aerosol manufacturing operations.
Deacom ERP Software is a batch process manufacturing system that specializes in controlling the details of complex businesses within the paint, coatings, adhesive, and sealant industries.
As a mixed-mode manufacturer, SEM Products produces and fills its paint by volume quantities and manufactures its adhesive and aerosol products by piece quantities. Prior to its selection of the Deacom ERP System, SEM Products used several disparate software systems to handle its manufacturing process. This structure lacked total integration and ease-of-use.
"After reviewing our existing software set-up, we determined it was necessary to keep our data in one complete software system," explains Brian Goff, SEM Products' VP of Administration/Finance.
The Deacom ERP System will handle the accounting, inventory, lab management, production, Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and order entry functions of SEM Products. Full implementation will be completed in April of 2007.
Business leaders can now get "immediate feedback" on their organization's customer management effectiveness, with the new CustomerQ online tool launched by CRMGuru.com, in partnership with QuestionPro.
In just 15 minutes online, the assessment generates a CustomerQ score, described by CRMGuru officials as "a composite index of five major customer management attributes."
The score is based on a methodology developed over five years of research into the success factors for both conventional CRM projects and, more recently, Customer Experience Management initiatives.
"Our members wanted more than just another survey that results in a benchmark report weeks or months in the future," said the boyishly handsome Bob Thompson, CEO of CustomerThink Corp. and founder of CRMGuru. "With CustomerQ, we're very pleased to give our members immediate feedback on how their organization's management capabilities compare to others in our global database, to help pinpoint areas where improvement is needed."
The CustomerQ assessment is powered by QuestionPro, a vendor of hosted market research services for the creation, distribution and analysis of electronic surveys.
"In many ways, the increase of electronic commerce has increased the distance between the company and the customer," said Vivek Bhaskaran, CEO of QuestionPro. "Electronic surveys can help become the eyes and ears of a company, delivering the type of feedback that used to come directly from customers."
The free CustomerQ online tool is available at www.crmguru.com/customerq.
Plexus Systems, Inc., a vendor of the on-demand manufacturing performance system Plexus Online, has announced that it has attained Gold Certified Partner status in the Microsoft Partner Program, with competencies in Network Infrastructure, Business Process Integration Solutions, and Advanced Infrastructure Solutions.
Plexus Online is an on demand manufacturing performance system, combining the capabilities of enterprise resource planning (ERP), manufacturing execution systems (MES), quality management, customer relationship management (CRM), shop floor integration, and others.
With the ability to manage a single facility or a global enterprise, Plexus Online is used to track and manage aspects of the manufacturing operation, anywhere, anytime, via the software as a service (SaaS) model.
Plexus Online consists of over 350 functional modules.
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