Lately, you may have heard a lot about automation development at IQMS. Our customers have several exciting new automation products to select from to operate their businesses more effectively and efficiently. Internally at IQMS, we have also embraced a lot of automated technology to more efficiently and effectively develop the EnterpriseIQ ERP and MES software. Yes, change can sometimes be difficult, but knowing once we embrace the new technology it will save us time and reduce inaccuracies gives us the wherewithal to power through the learning curve and enjoy the benefits.
Here are a few programs we've recently implemented:
YouTrack is an issue tracking system and project management software developed by JetBrains. It's a query-based search program to track all issues and features allowing for complete transparency and collaboration between all departments. It allows us to continue advancing in the agile development format. If you've been in MyIQMS lately, you will see there have been almost 5,000 enhancement requests from our customers since we implemented MyIQMS; that is a lot of design discussion and submission, code, quality control and general information to track.
Our Quality Assurance, Development and Programming departments are very excited to utilize this product. I know my department will save many hours a week using this program and after our training session recently, I could see how excited they were to start practicing entering issues and, more importantly, I could tell they understood the future benefits of an entire tracking system in one place. I might have seen a few overwhelmed faces too, that comes with change, but if they are used to anything at IQMS, it's change.
Another technology we have implemented is Perforce. We've been using it for a while now and I don't know how we worked without it. The Perforce server manages a central database and a master repository of file versions. Programmers check code, Oracle packages, views, etc. in and out of one central repository and it's transparent to Quality Assurance and our programmers. The Quality Assurance Specialist can track the physical changes made to the software, compare past revisions and have access to the latest code for testing purposes. A lot of the functionality of Perforce was done manually by the programmers and me and I sometimes wonder how we ever managed to work without Perforce. It enforces the quality of version file content and leaves little room for error.
Finally, FinalBuilder is a product IQMS put in to place to automate the entire build process of updates. The compiling and building of scripts, executables, Application Manager files, client installation and many other update functionalities are all done automatically with the touch of a button. The build is monitored by the software and Quality Assurance can monitor the build while it's taking place and easily modify or add commands to the update. The compile used to be done manually and semi-automatically with a couple of different disparate programs. Another sanity saver for me!
These are just three examples of automation improving our effectiveness and efficiency internally at IQMS. I may not be a manufacturer enjoying the features our Automation department delivers, but I completely understand having one program doing many tasks for you, monitoring your systems and notifying you of disparities, and most importantly to me - saving time.