Considerations for an Upgrade
By Khurram Ahmad, CEO of Smart IS International
As an organization you have committed to upgrade to JDA/BY WMS 2017+ and are in the process of evaluating the effort required for this upgrade and whether this upgrade can solely be considered a “Technical” upgrade?
Like any organization running pre-JDA/BY WMS 2017+ software, a major portion of your customizations will be in the form of DDAs (Data Driven Applications). Pre JDA/BY WMS 2017+, the DDAs provided a quick method of providing your internal customers with customized views of their WMS data, provide simple maintenance screens and even screens to manage specific business rules and conditions. All this was easy in the pre JDA/BY WMS 2017+ world and a significant business process is now vested in this.
When considering the upgrade, this is a daunting undertaking because there is no upgrade path for the DDAs. You are mainly given one choice: that you can continue to run the DDAs in the “Fat” client and make your user population work within two GUI paradigms.
Before getting into the effort required for converting DDAs into Web Framework of 2017+, let us first consider what effort went into the DDA development in the current framework:
· 30% of the effort is in imagining the solution and designing it
· 40% of the effort is around the development of the SQL/ Command that will extract or manage the data for the DDA
· 10% of the effort is in DDA development
· 20% of the effort is in validation, testing and deployment
Based upon the above-mentioned effort, it will be safe to say that 70% of what is mentioned above is salvageable for an upgrade: we already know what the solution needs to look like, and the data elements needed for it. Granted that JDA/BY WMS 2017+ has slightly new data model and depending upon the version you are upgrading from, there are potential SQL changes to be made, yet the data tables from functional standpoint have not changed. For example, PCKWRK (Picks) changed to two tables starting with JDA/BY 2012 version, so the SQL needs to accommodate this but picks still come from these two tables now (or PCKWRK_VIEW which is delivered as a join between header and detail).
Now that we understand that majority of our DDA investment is salvageable, it will be a difficult sell that these DDAs not be converted to the Web Framework and expected that the users connect to Fat Client to work with them. The only prohibiting factor can be: either the cost of developing DDAs into the Web Framework, or the lack of knowledge of developing in Web Framework from your implementation partner.
Welcome to the Smart DDA Upgrade tool from Smart IS International.
Consider an option available to you where you can simply dump your DDA in the current version, upload them to a website and get back a rollout for your DDA as the Web Framework screen to be applied to the new version. If such an option was available and the economics of the effort made sense, would you not consider upgrading all the DDAs?
Smart IS International has invested considerable man hours in perfecting the process of converting DDAs to the Web Framework. Smart IS International started with the same premise given above that if majority of my investment is in the design and logic of the screen, why do I need to redevelop it? Why can’t I automate the process? JDA/BY’s new Web Framework offers great flexibility in the ability to achieve this end goal and Smart IS International has leveraged it.
When we get the DDA export from you, we will run it through our Smart Converter. If you provide the commands that go with the DDA, we will convert them to the new Data Model also for you. Then we will package all the updates into a rollout that you can apply in your environment and validate the solution. Any tweaking that may be needed can be done within your environment with our help. Since this is a repeatable process with Smart Engine for conversion the economics of this process plays in your favor; especially when the number of DDAs is high.
Contact Smart IS International (www.smart-is.de) for more information.