Introducing online A3 reports tool

Over the last 5 years we have worked with numerous service sector SMEs helping them to not only solve problems but to also think about how they could solve problem in a Lean way. We have found clients really like the simplicity of the A3 report process that was developed by Toyota. (For some background on what an A3 report is, have a read of the A3 reports blog).

But we believe there are some issues with this paper based system, and we have begun building a simple tool on agileBase that addresses these issues. An early release will be available in a few days. In the meantime, why not read around some of the books and videos referenced in this post?

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Analysis: The link between operations and strategy

Why analyze? And why now?

The IT press is currently full of stories about a recent trend; the increasing using of data analysis to built competitive advantage.  Analysis is coming into its own as service sector organisations realise that they can get real time answers to fundamental questions such as, what efficiency improvements are possible in my internal systems? How quickly are we handling customer complaints? Or what exactly are customers responding to in my marketing campaigns?

agileBase has caught this zeitgeist and now allows SMEs to visualise their data in the same way that larger organisations take for granted.

The new agileBase dashboard has operational, tactical and strategic charting features with highlights including:

  • automated reporting of unusual data, to aid data cleansing without requiring additional staff time
  • automated reporting of missing data in key fields
  • simple visualisations for any relevant metrics
  • side by side viewing of charts from different data sources to aid decision making
  • utilisation maps to show which areas of the business are important to users and which under-utilised, to help in evaluating investment strategies

agileBase Dashboard helps executives “see” their organisation in full, using data that’s traditionally been spread across a myriad of spreadsheets and other software tools. Where agileBase is already used for

  • CRM
  • marketing
  • learning/training systems
  • managing assets
  • customer complaints
  • etc.

then all of this data is already collected and shared amongst relevant staff. Just get in touch to enable a free dashboard evaluation and find out about the new features that allow insight into your own data.

New for April/May

Despite certain staff being incapacitated abroad during this month’s volcano ash flights shutdown, we’ve still managed to get out some major feature releases and updates requested by clients.

First is our executive dashboard, available as an addon – it’s now ready for initial users to play with.

The second is the ability to set any field in agileBase as mandated – i.e. a user has to fill in a value when editing a record. If they don’t, the effects are

  • the record is locked until the field is filled in
  • an exception will be shown in the new dashboard visible to managers

The third is an improvement to summary charts. You can now create charts that show cumulative totals and counts, e.g. running totals of a value as time progresses.

Of course, all these and other updates are immediately available to everyone using agileBase and remember, there’s no charge for adding additional users. You can share your company information with as many staff and selected outside users as you need to without additional purchases or the need to install software. Think of the comparison with other software you may have tried!

Here’s to a sunny and busy May!

Dashboard preview

The agileBase dashboard has entered internal beta testing and barring significant problems will be released next month as an add-on. We think this will add a lot of value for executive level staff or anyone who might benefit from a complete overview of the whole system.

It’s not production quality, there are still features to tune and issues to resolve, but if any clients are interested in getting an early preview and giving feedback on direction, please contact cliff@gtwm.co.uk to be set up.

v2.6 charting video demo

Release 2.6 of agileBase introduces some new ways to chart data. Here’s a five minute video that shows how to make the most of the new features for tactical analysis, creating, filtering and manipulating data charts.

agileBase

What’s new?

GT portalBase has a new name, agileBase. The working title ‘GT portalBase’ was overdue for replacement and the new name simply reflects the nature and purpose of the product, an agile development platform – development with agileBase allowing back office software to be

  • just in time (that is, this week and $ rather than next year and $$$$$)
  • just enough (rather than being swamped by bloatware and complex user interfaces)
  • just for us (customisable to business needs and processes)

Log in at www.agilebase.co.uk/start (the old domain will continue  to work as well)

What else?

Today’s release of version 2.5 also adds the ability to create as many summary charts as you like per view – more details in the docs

And coming up

We’re not just changing things on the surface, there are exciting things in the roadmap for the near future. The next development will be a custom addon that adds an executive dashboard covering the entire set of modules in your organisation’s setup, to give a ‘helicopter view’ of all the data as well as automatically highlighting likely exceptions and recent changes. More news on this blog soon…