Star product: Shuttleworth MIS v5.1
By Jon Severs Friday, 01 June 2012
An end-to-end management information system for printers of all sizes
What is it and when was it launched?
Shuttleworth MIS v5.1 is the latest version of the Shuttleworth MIS, which was first launched in the mid 1990s.
"It is designed for every print scenario, including repro, commercial print, packaging and print management," says Paul Deane, joint managing director. "It’s a complete front-to-back system, so covers every process that a print business would use."
Modules include estimating, costing, CRM, raw and finished stock, purchasing, dataflow, scheduling, invoicing, JDF/JMF and ‘business intelligence’. The new version was launched at Drupa 2012.
What’s new in version 5.1?
Deane says the new functionality in v5.1 is aimed at assisting the front office of a print firm, "the heavy users" in Deane’s view.
"We wanted to make it so they had better connectivity between their MIS and their email systems, as the majority of business communication is done via email these days," he reveals. "So in v5.1 we made sure information can be moved from an email system to a business system (an MIS) as smoothly and easily as possible."
The new version offers the ability to grab an email and drag it onto the MIS window. The system can also identify relevant attachments and place them onto the MIS server, or create a hyperlink to the file. In practical terms, this means that for a request for quotation email, you can drag and drop that email onto the Event Enquiry filter. All the details from the email including the attachments are automatically included on the Enquiry Event. The Event Enquiries are automatically prioritised by the ‘created date’ order and ‘priorities and colours’ are used to highlight the urgency and status of all Enquiry Events.
"Even if the information comes in an email where a series of conversations have taken place, it can still seek out the right information relevant for the job," says Deane. "What happened before is that people would use the email only and so you would have these islands of information everywhere – now all that information is stored centrally where everyone else in the business can access it."
The other significant new feature is the Business Intelligence toolset. With this module, you have a traditional dashboard where you can see live data in graphical formats, so you can see exactly what the business is doing. This now has a drill-down capability, so you can see the number of orders that day, but also see all the data associated with each job, such as costs and profits. This information can be accessed through the web, the MIS client and also through mobile devices.
"There is also capability for the user to create their own dashboard, so they can set up the KPI requirements and define the information they want," says Deane.
What is its USP?
"I think the functionality in v5.1 moves the goal posts for MIS," says Deane. "We also have a highly configurable system that really hands the power to the printer to get a bespoke solution and I think that our MIS offers more in this area than most."
He adds that the upgrade is free, which, he believes, is unusual for upgrades that add "masses of increased functionality".
How easy is it to use?
The system is very easy to use, according to Deane, who adds that the MIS is very intuitive and with a bit of training is simple to manage and configure to make bespoke for specific requirements. Shuttleworth also offers ongoing services in customising the system if the printer does not wish to do it itself.
How much does it cost and how many users does the system have currently?
"We have more than 400 customers in the UK using the software," says Deane. Prices per user are between £2,000-£3,000 depending on functionality.
Operating system Windows 2003–2008/Progress Database
Price Approx £2,000 per user depending on the number of modules
Contact Shuttleworth 01536 316338 www.shuttleworth-uk.co.uk
Optimus Optimus dash is designed to provide high levels of software automation and user flexibility for all print sectors. Optimus says dash is "super-fast" and highly flexible.
Operating system Mac and PC
Price from £6,500 for a two-user system
Contact Optimus 01483 740233 www.optimus2020.com
TimeHarvest is an end-to-end quoting and production system that allows users to go from quote through to invoicing with just one set of inputs.
Operating system Mac, PC and iOS
Price From £165 per month for a two-user, hosted system
Contact TimeHarvest 01865 236202 www.timeharvest.com
Tharstern has two MIS products, SmallPrint and Primo. The former is a low-cost option for SMEs, more inline with the price point of the Shuttleworth system.
Operating system Mac and PC
Price SmallPrint from £6,495 or £199 per month
Contact Tharstern 01282 860660 www.tharstern.com
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