- How are the sales orders received by head office?
Answer: RemoteDesk uses one of the most common ways we communicate to other people, your existing E-Mail to send and receive messages and data. It does not require any special Internet server, modem gateway or expensive firewalls. It can use your existing Internet E-mail box with your Internet Service Provider, or using Microsoft Exchange in Windows 95. It will also communicate through Lotus cc.Mail system.
- Does this mean the remote users are not online?
Answer: The remote user can be as current as the last e-mail, daily, hourly or as frequently as head offices processes orders and updates stock. Some of the many advantages with this method are: a) You are not dependant on waiting for a server or connection to be available; b) The PC response to ordering and queries is immediate; c) There is no possibility of being disconnected during order entry or query; d) You can place an order from anywhere and logon for a few minutes when it's convenient; e) Because they have a copy of their orders, current price list and their order status, all their information is always at their finger tips.
The most important aspect of this is cost. According to Forrester Research the average cost of setting up an E-commerce web site in the first year varies between $171,000 and $274,000 dollars (USD). Then there is the cost of service and staff. To have online web page ordering requires a large investment by the hosting company. A simple web page now requires a database server behind it, to provide information to browsers. The database has to be updated by some automatic process, or if the corporate accounting system is online, a solid and secure firewall, proxy server and other combinations of hardware and software are required for security against hackers, database protection and damage. When you require online credit card authorization and a secure web site the cost is even more. If your business is ideal for web based ordering, Bravo Software can customize a web based order screen for RemoteDesk that attaches to your webpage. Call for more details.
- Does it interfere with my regular E-Mail?
Answer: RemoteDesk uniquely identifies its own E-Mail messages so it does not interfere with regular E-Mail. When the program looks into your mail inbox, it looks for a message with a specific subject line. All other messages are ignored. If you receive mail and get one of these messages, just leave it for RemoteDesk to read and automatically delete.
- Does RemoteDesk interface with ACCPAC for Windows or
ACCPAC Plus for DOS?
Answer: Both are supported and included in the same product!.
- How does RemoteDesk interface with ACCPAC?
Answer: RemoteDesk keeps its own database consisting of ACCPAC data. The customer and the item price list is updated directly from your ACCPAC data using programs built into RemoteDesk. The data can be updated as often as necessary. Once the RemoteDesk Administrator has updated files, the data is then transmitted via an E-mail message to all remote PC's at the same time. In benchmark tests, sending a 10,000 item database took only 3 minutes on the Internet. When new orders and new customer records are received from the remote PCs, RemoteDesk collects the data into its own database first. It gives you the opportunity to check the information, edit any changes and to print an audit report before any data gets into your accounting system. RemoteDesk exports the orders to a special file that is picked up by the ACCPAC Order Entry operator. A new menu choice added in ACCPAC Order Entry reads this special file and posts the orders to the ACCPAC database. Now regular office procedures are followed to handle new orders. Full access and complete audits of all orders are available.
- Does each sales rep require a copy of RemoteDesk?
Answer: Each salesperson that you want to electronically connect to head office would need a Remote Client version of the product. The great benefit to this however is all sales reps are using the same system at a fraction of the cost of installing a duplicate of the accounting software on each PC. Plus, because the Administrator is responsible for the setup by downloading all setup parameters, the sales rep just has to deal with a simple order screen and a SEND and RECEIVE button. The learning curve is minimal. In this way RemoteDesk can keep track of all salespeople individually and manage their data for them. They can create orders and quotes and have order status anywhere and anytime.
- What about data security over the Internet?
Answer:Data files from each remote and from Head office are compressed to make the files smaller and then uniquely encrypted for each site. You can also configure RemoteDesk to further encrypt the files with your own encryption software. The program also tracks all E-mail messages using the same methods used in EDI (electronic data interchange) applications with companies such as Walmart or Sears.
- How is my company data protected?
Answer: Each salesperson or customer only gets information that is specific to them, and nothing else. Items, customers, discount structures, special promotional pricing are all specific to the remote type. If you are receiving orders from a customer, they will only get their own customer profile and all other data fields will be dimmed. When orders are received in the head office, you also have the option of overriding all item prices and forcing them to those special prices and discounts that have been set up in ACCPAC. In other words, all ACCPAC pricing will be guaranteed.
- Some staff are using contact management software such as
ACT! to track leads. How can RemoteDesk use this?
Answer: RemoteDesk provides a special interface to contact management software that allows the user to access their contacts from within RemoteDesk. This makes it easy to take your leads, turn them into quotes and convert those quotes into orders and a sale without ever having to rekey information such as address, phone etc. Once an order has been created, the contact turns into a customer for head office processing along with the order. There are currently RemoteDesk add-ons for ACT! and GoldMine.
- What are other advantages of using RemoteDesk as opposed
to faxing orders like we do now?
Answer: There are never any rekeying mistakes or delays in processing important sales orders. All data is tracked by the system and the integrity of the sales orders is guaranteed to match your requirements. More importantly, your remote user: salesperson; dealer or large customer has been given a priority connection to your business. A dedicated pipeline for ordering and order status. This translates into dedicated customers and improved service. You can get results of what happened to your orders, when it was received, processed, shipped or if it is on backorder or credit hold. RemoteDesk keeps them informed and gives them the information they need quickly. There is no depending on network availability or clean connections.
You can also send other data files such as word processing, spread sheets and sales analysis figures so that custom reports and activity analysis can be performed. Information is at your finger tips, anytime and anywhere.
- How does RemoteDesk handle customers differently from
my sales reps when entering orders?
Answer: RemoteDesk provides unique options that allow individual set up and customization for the entry process, and allows access to order information based on different types of remote users. In a customer scenario, only 1 customer record is sent to the remote PC and the order screen always displays the customers' master record. The RemoteDesk administrator can also predefine many order fields and prohibit entry of them to keep the ordering process simple - just include the items they need. They can then print a copy of the sales order before it is E-mailed off.
A company sales person can have many customer records on their PC as well as being able to create new customers and ship-to's. They can also have individual options set for their needs, and order entry defaults for new sales orders.
- Can my remote sales staff see customers credit or AR
Answer: RemoteDesk keeps customer AR information such as "Outstanding Balance" and "Last payment date". This information is refreshed each time the RemoteDesk administrator updates you. This can be done on a daily basis and the updated information sent automatically to all remote clients.
- How does RemoteDesk handle inventory quantity on hand?
Answer: RemoteDesk keeps information on Inventory item records such as quantity on hand, quantity on sales order and quantity available to sell. There are item related dates such as sale start date and last receipt date that can be kept as well. As with customers, items can be updated from ACCPAC on a daily basis and synchronized with the remote PCs. It is important to note though, the quantity on hand displayed is an aggregate of all inventory, not just a level for 1 location.
- I also want to update remote PCs with other data files for
different applications. Can RemoteDesk help me with this? Can it do it automatically?
Answer: Yes, RemoteDesk keeps a unique file folder for each of your remote sites. This folder or sub-directory can be updated with files such as spreadsheets or other data that will automatically be "wrapped" and encrypted with regular RemoteDesk information being E-mailed. There is also a function in RemoteDesk called "Launch" that can execute a pre-programmed batch file that can automatically copy and move these files as required.
- How are new customer codes and order numbers assigned?
Answer: RemoteDesk has several options to handle order numbering. Order numbers can be assigned uniquely at each remote site, or you can elect to use ACCPAC Order Entry's automatic numbering at the head office when the orders are posted from RemoteDesk . RemoteDesk then tracks the original order and the new assigned order number, and allows for searching of these 2 criteria.
For customer numbers each remote site can be given a unique customer number prefix and incrementing sequence, or it can be manually entered based on head office format procedures. In this way customer numbers are assigned and carried through to your ACCPAC System.
- Why wouldn't I just use ACCPAC for Windows 'Import' function?
Answer: An Import function is simply a 'tool' to get a specified file format into the accounting system. When you are using a product such as RemoteDesk which is a full system, you get countless features that a simple import cannot provide. These include;
- 1. The remote sites do not require any accounting modules, simply RemoteDesk Client Version ($395). This saves approximately $3500.
- 2. The head office can automatically and easily handle multiple remote site files, complete with audit trails, data checking, ability to re-import if problems occurred, and ability to reset a remote site if problems occur. Plus they also have the ability to 'one key' setup and update new remote sites. Templates are automatically sent to differentiate between branch offices, sales reps and customers.
- 3. Lets you deal with your customers. This is not just an internal solution for sales reps and branch offices, it lets you link your customers so they can order 24 hours a day, and get order status updates next day. This is supply chain management at its finest. Customers will only receive information, items and pricing particular to them.
- 4. The remote site gets back an order status, updated customers and item quantities. The entire system isn't getting compressed, and transferred back and forth. Also, if they want to re-import new customers and items, you would need to establish a continuous way to manage.
- 5. The system has built-in encryption and compression validation that is unique to every remote site. It also has a 'kill' switch, in case you need to instantly disable the system of a user.
- 6. You would have to come up with a system that allowed order or invoice processing at a remote site, and then figure out how to import the customers, prices etc. into the remote location.
- 7. Uses your existing e-mail system easily driven by menu options for the users. No need to invoke the e-mail, switch to the data, attach files to an e-mail message, and so forth. It also automatically informs you when there is data for RemoteDesk, whereas an import feature would require you search the e-mail list for the appropriate files.
- 8. This is an entire system with built-in validation at every step. Systems that use simply an import/export utility. will find that it is still prone to errors, forgetting what was done, what needs to be sent back and to who. RemoteDesk has built-in data synchronization for unlimited remote files, with automatic updating of the results, using built-in Send and Receive options. This product makes Electronic Commerce Easy.
Can I change the quote or order format that the product comes with?
Answer: RemoteDesk uses one of the most popular reporting products on the market, Crystal Reports. This allows users to use or purchase this product to change any of the reports or forms within RemoteDesk. You can also use it for most of your other Windows products as well, so it becomes a flexible investment.
I am confused as to which client version I need, can you better describe this?
Answer: RemoteDesk has 4 major types of clients, they are;
RemoteDesk eCommerce - this is an Administrator version that allows you to receive orders from a web-based shopping cart
but a good time to consider it is when you are determining the types of clients
and orders you will be processing.
(1) RemoteDesk Client - this is for remote order processing from a laptop
(2) RemoteDesk Invoicer - this is for remote order and invoice processing from a laptop
(3) RemoteDesk Customer - this is for customers only. They will only receive items, pricing
and details pertaining to 1 customer.
(4) RemoteCE - this is order processing from a PocketPC device
For a link to the components in detail visit: RemoteDesk Components
- Do you have any questions? Please submit them to: RD@bravosw.com
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