2017 has been a very busy year so far in the IT Department at ELITeXPO. To celebrate our 30th year in business, we're upgrading a significant number of software systems, hardware, and communications platforms with the goal of improving customer service and maximizing operating efficiencies. We're also moving many of our systems to the Cloud.
Tech Updates Are Well Underway
Doing it all at once presents some challenges but it's the best way to have systems in place that allow for data integration. The ability to see data from one software system while using another one is going to be extremely helpful to providing our team the tools they need to assist our customers as quickly and completely, as possible.
We have already made the upgrade to Sage's new 100c accounting system. Our next upgrade is happening in 2 weeks when we move to Sage CRM for customer relationship management. We're also moving many of our systems to the Cloud.
All employees are now using Office 365 and Skype for Business with Exchange via Azure. This is giving all staff 24/7/365 access to all communications, as well as critical document access, from all devices in the office and at home.
We'll be installing a new VoIP server in June to replace our current VoIP server. We moved to VoIP fourteen years ago and have enjoyed the benefits ever since. We have employees working throughout the country and using VoIP has allowed for all staff to work as if they're at a desk in our corporate office.
Our last upgrade for 2017 is a big one. We are currently in development with a custom software solution. The XPOELITE system is tailor-made for our business processes as a trade show solutions provider. We're really excited about having a system that integrates with not only our other software systems but has 3rd-party API capabilities. XPOELITE will even add the ability to push shipment status messages via text, if preferred over emails. Our current track will have us live on XPOELITE by the end of 2017.
Setting out to improve your company's technology is a major task. It takes years to plan and a significant amount of time to implement. (We'll skip the whole part about how much it all costs!) The best advice I can give any company is to keep updating! Technology advances come by the minute these days. Make sure that the systems you put in place have the capability to expand and the flexibility to interface using the newest methods available. Research everything and interview technology partners well, as you're going to be in a relationship with them for years to come.
Lastly, enjoy playing!! Click on EVERYTHING! You will find more new cool ways to improve processes if you take the time to play around in your new systems and test out all of their capabilities.