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Crossroads Inc.

Migrating iSeries-based applications to Windows

The Problem

When Software Companies wish to migrate legacy applications to open environments and upgrade them with fully functional BI/OLAP technology and Web-enabled SOA capability, where do they turn?

The Partner

INFINITE Corporation recently completed an install of an Infinite iSeries package with OLAP (On-Line Analytical Processing) for Crossroads. OLAP technology is bundled with the Infinite iSeries migration suite. The suite of products provides a complete environment for migrating AS/400 and iSeries applications to Windows, Unix or Linux. It also brings the AS/400 database across and provides the ability to use such popular databases as Oracle or MS SQL.

While Crossroads wanted to provide its customers with a Windows version of its MES suite of products, it was primarily concerned with creating new functionality using web-based SOA and BI/OLAP technology. This included web pipes, creating web grids and building reporting dashboards and web-based reporting and analysis.

Crossroads’ suite of MES (Manufacturing Execution System) is a web-enabled business intelligence solution that has been specifically designed for the manufacturing industry. Crossroads delivers applications that improve the profitability and competitiveness of manufacturers with sophisticated functionality that is cost efficient, easy to use, implement and maintain.

The Need

Crossroads is the only cross-platform MES solution that operates on both AS/400 and PC platforms and interfaces with multiple ERP systems.
Following the Global Alliance Partnership with SSA Global, one of the world’s largest extended ERP vendors; Crossroads needed a seamless solution to bridge the existing ERP systems from the AS/400 into the platform-independent, web-enabled Crossroads GUI MES environment.

The Goal

Rich Grilli, president of Crossroads, said he needed to find a way to run his system with multiple database capabilities. His goal was to be able his applications to operate through SQL Server, DB2 and Oracle, while utilizing Windows, UNIX and Linux operating systems, yet only maintain one set of source code. The only feasible solution he found was INFINITE Corporation’s Infinite iSeries.

He selected the Infinite iSeries solution with OLAP capability and web support because it provided the environment to migrate his iSeries applications to Windows and Linux and allowed the flexibility to use DB/2, SQL and Oracle.

The Need

Crossroads became a business partner with INFINITE Corporation in 1998, though the original Baby product line. As times have changed, and software technology has bettered, the company set its sights forward and made the move to Infinite iSeries with OLAP.
Thanks in part to a stable partnership with INFINITE Corporation, the transition to the Infinite line was smooth.

The Time

“Everything went smoothly,” Grilli said. From start to finish, the project lasted only a few months. Crossroads installed their first project with a national manufacturing company in Mexico at the end of 2005. Now, more than 200 users have touch-screen capability, web access and custom drill-down reporting. Welcome to 2006!

The Benefits

“We wouldn’t have been able to do this without this tool,” Grilli said. “It saved us a fortune! There would have been no way to accomplish this in a reasonable timeframe.”
Installing Infinite iSeries saved Crossroads more than just time and money.
“We would have lost all kinds of business has we not found this tool,” Grilli said.

The Future

The creation of GUI screens with touch screen capability is just a starting point for Crossroads. Grilli is looking to the future with plans for more personalized production features. “The production dashboard is an ongoing process,” Grilli said. The production dashboard is a feature of OLAP that lets the user design, create and customize specific reports.
Crossroads will now have the opportunity to deploy its application across a wider base of clients and provide for integration with existing ERP ancillary applications, while reducing down-time to the end user.
Being a business partner with INFINITE Corporation will ensure that there is never a stopping point for Crossroads.