Archive for March, 2011

Infor FMS SunSystems Enterprise

March 10th, 2011

Soon to be launched this is an exciting new release, which leverages the full power of SSRS  for financial reporting.

Prior to the official launch next month Synergy Software Systems hosted an Infor Regional training event in our offices this week with visitors from as far afield as:  Mauritius, Egypt KSA, Uganda, Kenya, Nigeria. 

Of course Sunsystems has many new features and easier ways of working and it still retains its outstanding core features. Its single ledger, dimensional accounting and powerful multi-currency means that is has few equals for powerful easy to use fiancials..

SunSystems is the leading global integrated suite of financial and business management applications delivered across the Middle East by Synergy Software Systems, which is an Infor Gold Partner.

The SunSystems product family is a combination of strong domestic and global functionalities that are consistently enhanced to capture the rapidly changing requirements in international accounting standards, corporate governance and technology. For over 25 years, SunSystems has been the top tier solution for enterprises seeking best-in-class financial control, measurement and real-time analysis. It has been accredited by KPMG as being Sarbanes-Oxley and IFRS compliant and can also support multiple GAAP reporting in multiple languages.

SunSystems has been a leader in the management accounting arena for over 20 years. Local and international enterprises have chosen SunSystems for its powerful, non-customization approach to rapid and low-cost deployment.

On a global basis, SunSystems has been implemented in over 20,000 sites, including 45 of the 50 largest corporations, a quarter of the Fortune 500, and 75 of the FTSE 100.

Your benefits with SunSystems:

  • Reduce costs and risks via rapid implementations for local and global roll-out projects
  • Scalable products
  • Reduce errors and financial closing cycle time
  • Improve visibility into financial processes and detailed performance (management accounting)
  • Improve user productivity through easy reporting, querying, and data entry
  • Comply with SOX requirements
  • Life-time support and version upgrades

SunSystems Financial Modules:

Ledger Accounting (Full local and international compliance)

  • Single integrated ledger combining GL, AP, AR
  • Analysis codes for transactions, chart of accounts, and non-financial data
  • Multiple books to manage financials by individual company, business unit, or project
  • Multiple GAAP support
  • Multiple languages (English, Arabic, Japanese, Chinese etc.)
  • Multiple financial periods up to 999 (i.e. close your books up to 3 times per day )
  • Multiple security levels
  • Project tracking to manage budgets, capture expenditures, and track billing and revenue
  • Debtor days management
  • Sophisticated ledger inquiry function
  • Automated payment terms functionality to calculate due dates, etc.
  • Automated reports
  • Tax reporting, with up to 100 criteria available for selection
  • Flexible interface format for batch or real-time exchange to and from SunSystems. Interface references with major front office systems in Financial, Insurance, Hotel, Retail industries.
  • Multiple currency functionality against base currency or dual-base currency
  • All major currencies supported
  • Flexible rules for exchange rate settings

Fixed Assets

  • Multi-currency asset register
  • Flexible depreciation – up to 10 methods available per asset
  • Asset notes system for tracking histories and life cycles
  • Powerful reporting for increased control of fixed assets

Corporate Allocations

  • Support for apportioned and fixed percentage allocations, fixed amounts and iterative charging
  • Full support for inter-company processing
  • High degree of flexibility to define allocation structures for each organization
  • Posting options with tight controls to enable financial management across the corporation
  • Comprehensive audit trail to trace all allocations in full

Budget Management (SunSystems Budget Management)

  • Enables the central collation and control of budget spreadsheets used in financial accounting
  • Manages all aspects of enterprise-wide budgeting, forecasting and planning
  • Capitalizes on the power and familiarity of standard Microsoft Excel so that individuals can build and control their own budgets easily
  • Budget workbooks can be allocated and dispatched to budget holders for completion and return
  • Through developing a budget data warehouse, Budget Management handles the process of automatic consolidations, iterative amendments, status logging and the distribution and resubmission of workbooks using e-mail

Sunsytems has proved effective in many verticals especially in Oil and gas, Distribution, Financial Services, and Hospitality.

Blood donation

March 7th, 2011

 Blood donation in the UAE – How and where to donate blood locally 

 Al Wasl Hospital :04 2192331

  •   Time: Sun- Thurs 7:30am – 6:00pm
  •  To host a blood drive: Call: 04 2193338 Al Baraha Hospital Call: 2710000

Sharjah Sharjah Blood Transfuion and Research Center Call: 06 5582111

  • Time: Sun – Thurs 7:30am – 7:30pm Sat: 7:30am – 1:30pm
  • To organise a campaign of 40+ people, call 06 5582111

Online is a helpful resource for both donors and recipients. Register as a donor and keep track of upcoming blood drives via the site. Those in need of blood can make requests and access the donor database.

Dos and don’ts for blood donors -  . Those who can donate blood should:

  • Be residents of the UAE between the ages of 17 and 60
  • Have a minimum weight of 45kg
  • Not have donated blood in the last 90 days
  • Not be suffering from any infectious diseases, influenza or taking antibiotics Those who can never donate their blood are:
    • Hepatitis B and C patients,
    •  HIV positive patients,
    • Diabetics who are insulin or pill dependent. However, those who can control sugar levels through diet and exercise can donate, Alcoholics and drug addicts
  • Temporary deferrals on people who:
    • Have had dental work done in the last five weeks,
    • Are taking antibiotics,
    • Have smoked or consumed alcohol in the last 72 hours 
    •  Have had tattoos or ear piercing done in the present year,
    • Pregnant women,
    • Anaemic patients who can replenish their haemoglobin can come back for donation later
  •  When you visit a camp for donation, you should have:
    • Had plenty of fluids
    • Eaten nutritious food
    • Had a good night’s sleep
    • Refrained from smoking or drinking

 At the centre:, they’ll :

  • register you as a donor,
  •  take a quick medical history,
  •  do a medical examination,
  •  get you to donate a
  • provide you with a place for brief rest and some refreshments to replenish your energy.

After donation:

  • You must continue to lie on the bed with your feet raised above the level of your body for ten minutes
  • Leave the bandage on for four hours
  • Drink extra fluids for the next three days, especially the first four hours after donation
  • Have a protein-rich diet and rest, which means not taking extra stress of work or driving

Windows Embedded Compact 7 operating system- “Chelan.”

March 6th, 2011

Microsoft announced general availability on March 1 of the final version of its Windows Embedded Compact 7 operating system, codenamed “Chelan.”

Microsoft posted a 180-day trial version of the final Windows Embedded Compact 7 bits to the Microsoft Download Center on February 28.

The newest Embedded Compact operating system is designed to power phones (including Windows Phones), medical devices, industrial automation products and retail systems, as well as slates/tablets.

The Windows Embedded Compact 7 product — the evolution of Windows Embedded CE — includes several new features. Among them:

* Support for ARM v7
* New developer and designer tools
* New technology for creating user interfaces
* New SMP (symmetric multiprocessing) support for x86 & ARM, MIPS
* New multimedia player, with customizable UI
* New version of Internet Explorer (which is based on IE 7 with some “performance updates” from IE 8)
* Flash 10.1 support (which requires an Adobe license by OEMs who want to include that feature)
* Silverlight for Embedded support
* Improved Connectivity to PCs, servers (NDIS 6.1 support)

Silverlight for Embedded enables OEMs to create custom interfaces, using XAML and native C++, “free from Windows chrome,” meaning the surrounding usual Windows user-interface elements. Here’s a slide from a recent Microsoft presentation to OEMs that outlines the new Silverlight for Embedded feature in Compact 7:

New ui for Windows?

March 6th, 2011

Could this be the new UI for Windows 8?

A demonstration provided by Microsoft Research at TechForum Monday of a “radical,” colorful user interface used in a presentation triggered speculation that it may be a taste of  what’s coming in Windows 8 . The bubbly UI was seen running on Surface 2 and accepted direct input from a Windows Phone 7 smartphone, the HTC HD7.

Presented by Microsoft Chief Research and Technology Officer Craig Mundie, the UI auto-generated colored bubbles rather than icons: blue represented specific personal and social features like Facebook, Twitter, and so on; green represented work-related features such as the current presentation; yellow represented special interests such as listening to music, watching movies and more. The size of the bubbles also indicated a specific level of importance– the bigger the bubble, the higher the importance.

During the presentation, he highlighted one green bubble encasing an airplane icon. This bubble indicated that something was going on with a particular scheduled flight that he needed to address. Using the phone as a makeshift motion sensing remote, he clicked on the bubble and thus revealed information that his flight was indeed canceled. The UI thus went through his calendar, checked the weather for possible problems, and then found other flight options, but awaited his authorization before rescheduling. The UI then rearranged all the bubbles on the screen to reflect his new schedule once a flight was accepted.

What made this interface even more interesting was that Mundie was able to use the WP7 smartphone to navigate through the bubbles by tilting the phone forwards and from side to side. “Our view is that computing is getting embedded in everything, and everything is getting connected,” Mundie said . “And more and more the computing will be invisible. Most of where you encounter computing won’t be in front of something you call a computer.”

Synergy blog update

March 6th, 2011

Nearly 18 million blogs hosted by WordPress were either slowed or offline  after the service was hit with an unusually large distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack, according to Automattic, which operates the hosting service.  “The size of the attack is multiple Gigabits per second and tens of millions of packets per second,” WordPress said in a status update. “We are working to mitigate the attack, but because of the extreme size, it is proving rather difficult.”

Matt Mullenweg founde rof Word Press: ‘This is the largest and most sustained attack we’ve seen in our 6 year history. We suspect it may have been politically motivated against one of our non-English blogs but we’re still investigating and have no definitive evidence yet’

That is why we had some difficulties posting to the Synergy  last week!

Can Microsoft Compete with SAP and Oracle’s mid-market offerings?”

March 1st, 2011

The next video in the Microsoft Dynamics executive interview series from Software Advice. In this clip , “Can Microsoft Compete with SAP and Oracle’s mid-market offerings? You can view the footage at:

Tomorrow features another video that asks, “Is the ERP software market rebounding?”

Ax 2012 – workflow enhancements

March 1st, 2011

• The graphical workflow configurator – see in a Visio style exactly what workflows are configured to do and all the conditions . 

 • 2. No more external workflow website – a huge improvement. In AX 2012 sees a number of external components of AX being internalized, including workflow and AIF web services. No more will we have the nightmares that were associated with setting up the workflow website, business connector configurations etc. • 3. Workflow component generators. In AX 2009 we have seen a couple of people building code/AOT element generators to help speed up the workflow template building process. At Axnosis we have developed such a package as well for aiding in our development and are thus very happy to see such tools included in standard AX 2012. You can now generate event handlers, menu-items and approvals in one or two very easy wizard steps. Really great. • 4. Individual document lines are now able to be work flowed based off conditions. Previously we have had to have separate forms and separate workflow process to accomplish this. As part of AX2012 Purchase Order Line workflow options have been included. • 5. Touchless workflows, new automated tasks are supported within workflow to enabled actions to be performed on the document without user intervention, I believe these can be called either automatically or off certain conditions. • 6. A centralized type of inbox from where you can action all your different workitems from various different document types without having to directly access the document form

System analysts? Select the right implementation partner!

March 1st, 2011

R “Ray” Wang, principal analyst & CEO of the next generation research firm, Constellation Research and author of the popular blog A Software Insider’s Point of View, notes that there are really three types of industry analysts: client advocates who advise their clients on product quality, pricing, and help define client needs; vendor marketing analysts who help vendors bring to market and position their products; and market evangelists who explain the market to the public in business language.

“The really good analysts can function [in all three roles],” says Wang. “But to be able to do so, analysts need to spend time talking to the ISVs, talking to customers, and talking to the major vendors like Microsoft.”

.According to Wang, “In the past, direct software industry experience might not have been needed, but to be an analyst in today’s complex industry, it’s essential.  Analysts today need pragmatic experience.  How can you properly advise someone if you’ve never worked in the industry? You need someone who knows what the tough questions are and who has the confidence to ask them.”

In the beginning, says Wang, the big firms like Gartner, IDC, and Forrester had that pragmatic experience and they still do today. However, in recent years, there’s been a rise in “self-anointed analysts” that have never worked in the software industry. This has lead to a watering down effect exacerbated by the increasing role the Internet plays in all areas of the software development, buying, and selling processes. There’s so much information emanating from so many “expert” sources that there is a ‘can’t see the woods for trees problem’

Wang points out that the Internet  offers customers, ISVs, and analysts access to relevant online information that  allows everyone to gain a surface-level knowledge. It is importnat to understand which analyst(s) have the requisite knoelwedge,  skill set and experience and  what are the associated costs. Though you may want an independent analyst there are few who corss platform and prodcut expertise and they will inevitbaly have some bias based on their own knowledge and experience, and they will have forged realtionships wih particular implementation partners and vendors . Indeed without that they may not be able to properly evaluate the various  propsed solution archiectures against your proposed requirements within a  sensible time frame and budget.  It has been established many times that selecting the right partner  is more important than selecting the product.  The right partner will propsoe and provide the right solution archiecture and system analysis, or even be prepared to walk away and to recommend someone else  and this will not only save time and money but also provide accountability.

So how do you find the right partner?.  Those implementing for the first time focus on what seems to be ease of use and a low cost proposal.  Those who have more experience focus on the implementation partner- how long have they been in existence, what is their track record for completing projects, are they locally based, do they know the vertical, can they demo themsleves ?, do they have a manned support desk – are most of the clients still under a support agreement, do the management take an interest in the delivery or only the sales, do they struggle to find a reference of ther own, do the compromise too easily on price and time or do they have a focus on quality and deliverbales and their own reputation – do they value their own skills and time- . what does their product documentation look like? These answers will tell you far more than a detailed rfp or poc with much less investment of time.  The good partner will make it happen  and even if they don;t sell you the best solution it will be a good enough one and they will make it work.

Premier Composite Technologies LLC

March 1st, 2011

Premier Composite Technologies LLC, recently moved into a new purpose built factory in Dubai Investment Park, and went live on 1 March 2011 with a new implementation of Microsoft Dynamics Ax implemented by Synergy Software Systems. The company produces and erects architectural composite structures and is involved in prestigious projects across the region.

This Seiban manufacturing requires close coordination between supply chain manufacturing and on site project teams, and also has to deal with all the complexities of construction project billing.

Synergy’s deep experience in the Construction and Manufacturing  verticals, and the power and ease of use of Microsoft Dynamics Ax  coupled with a small dedicated and skilled project team from both sides has delivered a successful, on-time, on-budget project that will support Premier Composite’s rapid exapansion.