XO Communication Presenting at ISE Expo with Fulcrum Technologies

XO's Director Yvonne Sabatini, recognized for establishing "Best In Class Supply Chain" at XO, will be presenting ALM Best Practices at the 2016 ISE Expo on September 21st at 8:00AM.  This presentation is titled "PERFECT ASSET LIFECYCLE MANAGEMENT FOR ICTS: GETTING VISIBILITY, INSIGHT, AND CONTROL OF CRITICAL ASSETS", and is going to be introduced by Fulcrum CEO Brent Bauer.

According to Gartner Group and PWCC Asset Management consulting best practices, a company that effectively and efficiently implements an asset management program including automation of this process can anticipate a saving of 15-20% of the Total Cost of ownership for those assets managed.  Attendees will hear first-hand how XO Communications had a positive CAPEX and OPEX impact up and down their Supply Chain using Asset Lifecycle Management.

This session will include Goals, Challenges, the Business Case, Pains, Best Practices, Real-World Examples, and more.  

To attend the session, you must be signed up for the 2016 ISE Expo (Formerly OSP Expo). 

Yvonne Sabatini, Recognized as establishing “Best In Class” Supply Chain at XO.

Yvonne Sabatini, Recognized as establishing “Best In Class” Supply Chain at XO.

Asset Lifecycle Management Telecom

To have accurate visibility, insight and control of your assets from end to end, Telecom organizations have to have Asset Lifecycle Management (ALM) in the center of all back-end, mobile, and e-Polling systems. This greatly improves the accuracy of the data by means of data reconciliation as well as data collection. A great ALM solution can reconcile and verify any and all asset data regardless of the source, to provide every connected system with the most accurate and consistent data possible, at either a high or low level. This ensures the integrity of CSP asset information, reduces or removes the need for physical audits and serves as the database of record for all assets.

Because critical asset and infrastructure costs are so enormous ($350 billion globally), network & engineering executives, finance managers and supply chain executives are all starting to demand better ALM to solve a plethora of their Supply Chain pains:

·    It reduces the requirement to purchase duplicate equipment.

·    It allows for efficient reuse of extra assets, inventory and spare equipment (spares).

·    It gives visibility and insight into invoiced equipment to provide an understanding of what has truly been received and if it matches the purchase orders (POs).

·    It gives visibility and insight into the status of equipment going through the return and repair process.

·    It reduces theft, fraud and employee stockpiling / hoarding.

Asset Lifecycle Management Benefits for Telecom:

·    It gives Telecom companies an accurate picture of what is actually in use & where the inventory and assets reside - to allow for accurate tax payments.

·    It supports internal controls to allow for compliance, which reduces organizational and regulatory risks immensely.

·    It removes excessive repair and replacement expense through granular-level accurate warranty tracking.

·    It also allows field techs to find spares quickly, with insight into network information, revision numbers and more.

The ability to use ALM to reduce and optimize capex becomes a telecom’s biggest strategic advantage in a fiercely competitive global marketplace.   This is because ALM is the complete end-to-end management of network equipment through each of the many lifecycle stages from acquire to retire.

To learn how Asset Lifecycle Management can help you, please email info@fulcrum.net, or visit www.Fulcrum.net.  

Fulcrum Technologies CATS ALM Solution Featured on RCR Wireless:

Fulcrum ALM was featured in an article in the RCR Wireless Opinion Page "Should telecoms be OK with losing $90B per year on waste?":

Should telecoms be OK with losing $90B per year on waste? Over 50% of a telecom’s annual capital expenditure is invested in acquiring expensive network assets that are the foundation of their services for the customers. This capex number globally is $350 billion, which is a painful hit to the bottom line. What’s even more staggering is how much of that capex is wasted. According to a 2015 TeleManagement Forum survey, asset managers reported an average asset accuracy rate of only 74%. This means $90 billion dollars per year is wasted due to purchasing duplicate equipment, inefficient reuse of excess inventory and spare equipment, theft, fraud, hoarding, inaccurate warranty tracking and more. In any other industry, this would not be tolerated. In the telecom asset and infrastructure world, however, it has become commonplace to assume a systemwide failure to accurately track these critical assets. Validating this, the same telecom executives who only had visibility, insight and control of 74% of their assets, said an 84% level of accuracy would be “acceptable.” Making it more painful is that the asset losses are avoidable with an asset lifecycle management software and services solution in place. The problem started in 1984, when the Bell system was broken up into 29 different operators. These operators were suddenly faced with P&L responsibilities they previously didn’t have to worry about. They all recognized the need to track and manage their expensive network assets, but all 29 tackled it in 29 different ways. They made various types of notes and lists on every visible asset. Those notes and lists gave way to ledgers, and ledgers gave way to spreadsheets. Some of these spreadsheets then rolled up into a variety of operating support systems, business support systems, ERP and network polling solutions, which produced an asset database of record considered “good enough” to track the full ALM. Many telecoms today still attempt ALM through paper trails, spreadsheets, ERP, OSS or BSS. The problem is these solutions have one common weakness – a significant delta between what happens with assets in the real world and what is reflected in the asset-tracking database. To have accurate visibility, insight and control of your assets from end to end, you have to have ALM in the center of multiple systems. This improves the accuracy of the data by means of data reconciliation as well as data collection. A great ALM solution can reconcile and verify any and all asset data regardless of the source(s), to provide every connected system with the most accurate data possible, at either a high or low level. This ensures the integrity of CSP asset information, reduces the need for physical audits and serves as the database of record for all assets. Because infrastructure costs are so significant, stakeholders (and shareholders) are starting to demand an accuracy rate closer to 100%. Network operations, engineering executives, CFOs, accounting, finance managers and supply chain executives are all starting to test better ALM for a number of reasons: –It reduces or eliminates the purchase of duplicate equipment. –It allows for the efficient reuse of excess inventory and spare equipment. –It gives visibility into invoiced equipment to provide an understanding of what has really been received and if it matches the purchase orders. –It gives visibility into the status of equipment going through the return and repair process. –It reduces theft, fraud and hoarding. –It gives communication service providers an accurate picture of what is actually in use (as well as where the inventory and assets reside) to allow for accurate tax payments. –It supports internal controls to allow for compliance, which greatly reduces organizational and regulatory risks. –It removes excessive repair and replacement expense through accurate warranty tracking. –It also allows field technicians to locate spares quickly, with visibility into network information, revision numbers and updates. The ability to use ALM to reduce and optimize capex becomes a telecom’s biggest strategic advantage in a fiercely competitive global marketplace. ALM is the complete end-to-end management of network equipment through each of the many lifecycle stages – from acquire to retire. These stages include, among others, receipt of shipment; warehousing and spares management; picking and shipping; “minimum/maximum” settings; transfers; assembly; installation; deployment; maintenance; upgrades; repairs; returns; audits; cycle counts; and decommissioning. A complete solution takes ALM a step further, adding a mobile solution to provide accurate, real-time information that allows you to keep track of where every asset is – across the field, warehouse, datacenter or back office. It can be configured to let any worker scan 1D, 2D or micro PDF barcodes with the least number of attempts required, capturing data as it flows organically throughout its lifecycle. The right solution should work on any major scanner or smartphone scanning platform in any environment. Of course, this mobile solution should also require enterprise-grade security, ensuring the data you collect remains uncompromised. This includes a secure logon, user limited permissions, and encrypted password protection to safely connect to any integrated system through a secure transport layer behind your own firewall. ALM mobile solutions allow any field technician to collect the information needed when and where changes occur. These updates are captured in real time and communicated to the systems that rely on different types of asset information. Implementing initial planning, multiple-step processes could be configured for different types of users, ensuring intelligent, directed decision support and visibility into all inventory at every step, whether the field tech is offline or online. Intelligent decision support tools would allow you to see and control everything you need to accomplish your job, no matter who you are, what mobile platform you are using or where you are located. A full ALM solution includes software, services, asset tags and mobile hardware to make sure your solution brings you the highest possible asset assurance. From a best-practice perspective, a productive ALM suite tailors and customizes its routines to match your specific business processes. The many departments within a telecom that work with network assets do so in a variety of ways. This requires initial business analysis and consulting around the needs of all departments, and involves the implementation of holistic process improvements to maximize operational efficiencies. As part of the set-up process, there is a data clean up and preload of legacy asset data into the ALM database, which may require an audit of all network and warehouse sites. When that’s completed, the full software solution can be deployed, which includes integration between the ALM application and other key enterprise applications. To ensure successful adoption, a proper and thorough training of ALM system users also happens up front. The fact is, telecom equipment and other assets move around frequently during their lifecycle – whether it’s due to regular maintenance, the upheaval of mergers and acquisition activity, or the technology cascade that occurs when new equipment is deployed and old equipment is reassigned to new locations or retired. Successful CSP organizations use ALM to get visibility, gain insight and take control of their assets, with the ultimate goal of driving the accuracy score up towards 100%. For information on Fulcrum ALM, visit FULCRUM TECHNOLOGIES today.   To read this article at RCR, as well as other fantastic articles from RCR, please visit the incredibly resourceful RCR site, starting with this article's original post.   

Should telecoms be OK with losing $90B per year on waste?

Over 50% of a telecom’s annual capital expenditure is invested in acquiring expensive network assets that are the foundation of their services for the customers. This capex number globally is $350 billion, which is a painful hit to the bottom line. What’s even more staggering is how much of that capex is wasted.

According to a 2015 TeleManagement Forum survey, asset managers reported an average asset accuracy rate of only 74%. This means $90 billion dollars per year is wasted due to purchasing duplicate equipment, inefficient reuse of excess inventory and spare equipment, theft, fraud, hoarding, inaccurate warranty tracking and more.

In any other industry, this would not be tolerated. In the telecom asset and infrastructure world, however, it has become commonplace to assume a systemwide failure to accurately track these critical assets. Validating this, the same telecom executives who only had visibility, insight and control of 74% of their assets, said an 84% level of accuracy would be “acceptable.” Making it more painful is that the asset losses are avoidable with an asset lifecycle management software and services solution in place.

The problem started in 1984, when the Bell system was broken up into 29 different operators. These operators were suddenly faced with P&L responsibilities they previously didn’t have to worry about. They all recognized the need to track and manage their expensive network assets, but all 29 tackled it in 29 different ways. They made various types of notes and lists on every visible asset. Those notes and lists gave way to ledgers, and ledgers gave way to spreadsheets. Some of these spreadsheets then rolled up into a variety of operating support systems, business support systems, ERP and network polling solutions, which produced an asset database of record considered “good enough” to track the full ALM.

Many telecoms today still attempt ALM through paper trails, spreadsheets, ERP, OSS or BSS. The problem is these solutions have one common weakness – a significant delta between what happens with assets in the real world and what is reflected in the asset-tracking database. To have accurate visibility, insight and control of your assets from end to end, you have to have ALM in the center of multiple systems. This improves the accuracy of the data by means of data reconciliation as well as data collection. A great ALM solution can reconcile and verify any and all asset data regardless of the source(s), to provide every connected system with the most accurate data possible, at either a high or low level. This ensures the integrity of CSP asset information, reduces the need for physical audits and serves as the database of record for all assets.

Because infrastructure costs are so significant, stakeholders (and shareholders) are starting to demand an accuracy rate closer to 100%. Network operations, engineering executives, CFOs, accounting, finance managers and supply chain executives are all starting to test better ALM for a number of reasons:

–It reduces or eliminates the purchase of duplicate equipment.

–It allows for the efficient reuse of excess inventory and spare equipment.

–It gives visibility into invoiced equipment to provide an understanding of what has really been received and if it matches the purchase orders.

–It gives visibility into the status of equipment going through the return and repair process.

–It reduces theft, fraud and hoarding.

–It gives communication service providers an accurate picture of what is actually in use (as well as where the inventory and assets reside) to allow for accurate tax payments.

–It supports internal controls to allow for compliance, which greatly reduces organizational and regulatory risks.

–It removes excessive repair and replacement expense through accurate warranty tracking.

–It also allows field technicians to locate spares quickly, with visibility into network information, revision numbers and updates.

The ability to use ALM to reduce and optimize capex becomes a telecom’s biggest strategic advantage in a fiercely competitive global marketplace. ALM is the complete end-to-end management of network equipment through each of the many lifecycle stages – from acquire to retire. These stages include, among others, receipt of shipment; warehousing and spares management; picking and shipping; “minimum/maximum” settings; transfers; assembly; installation; deployment; maintenance; upgrades; repairs; returns; audits; cycle counts; and decommissioning.

A complete solution takes ALM a step further, adding a mobile solution to provide accurate, real-time information that allows you to keep track of where every asset is – across the field, warehouse, datacenter or back office. It can be configured to let any worker scan 1D, 2D or micro PDF barcodes with the least number of attempts required, capturing data as it flows organically throughout its lifecycle. The right solution should work on any major scanner or smartphone scanning platform in any environment. Of course, this mobile solution should also require enterprise-grade security, ensuring the data you collect remains uncompromised. This includes a secure logon, user limited permissions, and encrypted password protection to safely connect to any integrated system through a secure transport layer behind your own firewall.

ALM mobile solutions allow any field technician to collect the information needed when and where changes occur. These updates are captured in real time and communicated to the systems that rely on different types of asset information.

Implementing initial planning, multiple-step processes could be configured for different types of users, ensuring intelligent, directed decision support and visibility into all inventory at every step, whether the field tech is offline or online. Intelligent decision support tools would allow you to see and control everything you need to accomplish your job, no matter who you are, what mobile platform you are using or where you are located.

A full ALM solution includes software, services, asset tags and mobile hardware to make sure your solution brings you the highest possible asset assurance. From a best-practice perspective, a productive ALM suite tailors and customizes its routines to match your specific business processes.

The many departments within a telecom that work with network assets do so in a variety of ways. This requires initial business analysis and consulting around the needs of all departments, and involves the implementation of holistic process improvements to maximize operational efficiencies.

As part of the set-up process, there is a data clean up and preload of legacy asset data into the ALM database, which may require an audit of all network and warehouse sites. When that’s completed, the full software solution can be deployed, which includes integration between the ALM application and other key enterprise applications. To ensure successful adoption, a proper and thorough training of ALM system users also happens up front.

The fact is, telecom equipment and other assets move around frequently during their lifecycle – whether it’s due to regular maintenance, the upheaval of mergers and acquisition activity, or the technology cascade that occurs when new equipment is deployed and old equipment is reassigned to new locations or retired. Successful CSP organizations use ALM to get visibility, gain insight and take control of their assets, with the ultimate goal of driving the accuracy score up towards 100%.

For information on Fulcrum ALM, visit FULCRUM TECHNOLOGIES today.  

To read this article at RCR, as well as other fantastic articles from RCR, please visit the incredibly resourceful RCR site, starting with this article's original post

 

Fulcrum Technologies Launches Capex Optimization Consulting Practice

Fulcrum Technologies, a global provider of Asset Lifecycle Management solutions, today announced a new consulting practice to help Communication Service Providers optimize their supply chain and business operations from end to end.

 

SEATTLE, WA. — March 1, 2016 — Fulcrum Technologies, maker of the CATS Asset Lifecycle Management software, today announced the formation of Fulcrum Consulting Services (FCS) - a consulting services organization aimed at helping Communication Service Providers (CSPs) get visibility, gain insight, and take control of their business operations.  Fulcrum Technologies has consulted for Finance Managers, Supply Chain Executives, Network Operations, and Engineering Managers from over 40 different CSPs, and is positioned to engage with additional clients who are interested in enhancing their CapEx Optimization plans.

Fulcrum, along with logistics management partners, SIs and complimentary technology partners, can assess your business operations and provide solid practices to optimize your Asset Lifecycle Management and other Supply Chain Management functions - from acquisition to retirement. This includes management of warehousing, inventory, warranties, spares, and more, and gives a precise snapshot of what is actually active (as well as the geographic location of inventory) to allow for accurate property tax payments. It also provides best practices for compliance with governing and internal process controls, which greatly reduces organizational and regulatory risks. 

FCS offers two pre-packaged offerings. The first consulting package is the “ALM Readiness Review.”  This option includes two days of on-site meetings, stakeholder interviews, detailed questionnaires, and intense analysis of key ALM areas, all followed by a detailed report of findings and recommendations. 

The second consulting package is the “Business Operations Review.”  This option includes two on-site trips - one week on the front end to do data gathering, and two days on the back end to present findings and recommendations.  The areas of study include inventory turns, equipment out for repair or return, taxation, time from receipt of asset to installation, sparing levels and philosophy, reuse, decommissioning management, and audit process and capabilities.  Following the data gathering and analysis, the consultants will produce a PMO (Present Mode of Operations), an FMO (Future Mode of Operations), a report comparing PMO with industry best practices and metrics, and an ROI analysis.

Additionally, FCS will engage with end clients and strategic partners to provide any custom engagement format desired.

“Having engaged with over 40 Communication Services Providers in the past 17 years, Fulcrum understands very well the considerations that CSPs have in optimizing their investments in network equipment. Over 50 percent of a CSP’s annual spend is on network assets and we understand the best practices associated with tracking, managing and optimizing those assets. Fulcrum’s new consulting division will provide consulting services directly to our end clients as well as through a variety of partners. These services will help our clients understand the processes, workflows, and best practices required to achieve phenomenal savings on their network spend,” states Brent Bauer, CEO and Founder of Fulcrum Technologies. 

Communication Service Providers wanting more information about FCS consulting offerings should visit www.ALM.Consulting to learn more. 

CapEx Optimization Consulting Services

To survive and thrive in a changing environment, successful companies recognize the need to reap maximum benefit from their capital investments and optimize their supply chain and business operations from end to end.  These organizations use industry best practices, world class tools, and effective data management to optimize their Capital Expenditure (CapEx) spend.  Fulcrum Technologies has partnered with over 40 such Communication Service Providers (CSP’s) and, through Fulcrum Consulting Services (FCS), is positioned to engage with clients who are interested in enhancing their CapEx Optimization plans.  FCS offers 2 pre-packaged offerings, as defined below.  As well, FCS can tailor a consulting engagement to suit the needs of our clients.  FCS can engage directly with CSP’s and/or can partner with other Logistics partners (such as MDSi, Worldwide Supply and others), technology partners, or System Integrators. Finance Managers, Supply-Chain Executives, Network Operations, and Engineering Managers can all benefit from the consulting services from FCS.  The consulting team can assess your business operations and provide solid practices to optimize your Asset Lifecycle Management and other Supply Chain Management functions from Acquisition to Retirement.  This includes warehousing, inventory, warrantee and spares management, and gives a precise snapshot of what is actually active (as well as what geography inventory resides in) to allow for accurate property tax payments. It also provides best practices for compliance with governing and internal process controls, which greatly reduces organizational and regulatory risks.  All that adds up to what every Communication Service Provider wants; full visibility, insight, and control of their Capital Expenditures from end-to-end.

ALM Readiness review:
• 2 days of on site meetings and Stakeholder interviews, including detailed questionnaire.
• Study key ALM areas (receiving, field operations, warehouse, current technology, existing systems to interface with, etc.)
• Deliver report of findings and recommendations

End-To-End Business Operations Review
• 2 trips on site - one at the beginning of the engagement (one week) to do data gathering, and one at the conclusion (2 days) to present findings, recommendations, ROI Analysis.
• Areas of study:   Inventory Turns, Equipment out for Repair/Return, Taxation, Time from receipt of Asset to when it is actually installed, Sparing levels and philosophy, Reuse, Decommissioning Management, Audit Process and Capabilities.
• Produce a PMO (Present Mode of Operations) and FMO (Future Mode of Operations) report.
• Produce a report comparing PMO with Industry Best Practice and Metrics.
• Use above information to produce a detailed ROI Analysis.
• 4 - 6 weeks in total duration.

To learn more about Fulcrum's consulting services, please visit ALM.Consulting.

Supply Chain Consulting


ISE Magazine Article: "In a Perfect World... There Would Be Perfect Asset Lifecycle Management"

Have you considered what managing your network assets would look like in a perfect world? ISE Magazine's latest issue provides the history, best practices and top line strategies for those with asset lifecycle management (ALM) responsibilities including finance, supply chain, network and operations managers, team members and field technicians.

You can listen to the article by voice over at this Youtube link

You can view the article below in text or image form, or visit ISE Magazine HERE to read it in the digital magazine, page 26.  

 In A Perfect World... There Would Be Perfect Asset Lifecycle Management

On October 21,1832, Baron Schilling produced the first commercially viable transmission of signals between two telegraphs, giving birth to the Information and Communications Technologies (ICT) industry.  At that time, the assets and infrastructure required to produce the communication was simple; two electromagnetic telegraphs and a cable running between them.  It was easy for him to track and manage the assets, as they were located in two different rooms of his apartment. 

Forty-four years later, Alexander Graham Bell produced the first commercially viable audio transmission, which was the genesis of the Telecommunications industry.  Similar to the setup in Baron Schilling’s apartment, Bell’s infrastructure and assets contained a transmission device, a cable, and a receiver - all located in plain sight in his Boston laboratory.

Those were the only two points in history where an ICT organization recognized 100% asset integrity with regard to their critical infrastructure.  It was easy then, with a minimal number of assets contained in a singular field of vision.  As the ICT industry grew, so too did the assets required to support it, as well as the ever-expanding geographic locations.  In short, it became logistically impossible to have perfect visibility, insight, and control of an ICT’s assets throughout their respective lifecycles.  Over time, ICTs grew to accept less than perfect accuracy rates as an industry standard.  According to a 2015 TeleManagement Forum survey, asset managers reported an average asset accuracy rate of only 74%.  Even more shocking, those same executives said an 87% level of accuracy would be acceptable.  The “acceptable” losses are staggering, given that the global ICT industry invested 350 billion dollars in expensive network assets in 2015, with that number expected to rise steadily year over year.  No other industry on earth would allow this level of inaccuracy.

The 350 billion dollars represent over 50% of the global ICT industry’s annual capital expenditures.  Because the infrastructure costs are so significant, the ability to use Asset Lifecycle Management (ALM) to reduce and optimize Capex becomes an ICT’s biggest strategic advantage in a fiercely competitive marketplace.  ALM is the complete end-to-end management of network equipment through each of the many lifecycle stages, from acquire to retire.  These stages include, among others, receipt of shipment, warehousing and spares management, picking and shipping, min/max settings, transfers, assembly, installation, deployment, maintenance, upgrades, repairs, returns, audits, cycle counts, and decommissioning.

Network Operations, and Engineering Executives, along with CFOs, Accounting, Finance Managers and Supply-Chain Executives can all benefit from powerful, intelligent, flexible ALM for a number of reasons.  It reduces or eliminates the purchasing of duplicate equipment. It allows for the efficient reuse of excess inventory and spare equipment.  It gives visibility into invoiced equipment to understand what has really been received and if it matches the Purchase Order.  It gives visibility into the status of equipment going through the return and repair process.  It reduces theft, fraud, and hoarding.  It gives ICTs an accurate picture of what is actually active (as well as what geography inventory resides in) to allow for accurate property tax payments.  It supports internal controls to allow for compliance, which greatly reduces organizational and regulatory risks.  It removes excessive repair and replacement expense through accurate warranty tracking. It also allows field technicians to locate spares quickly, with visibility into network information, revision numbers, and updates.

The ideal solution does all of this and takes ALM a step further, adding a mobile solution to provide accurate, real-time information that allows you to keep track of where every asset is - across the field, warehouse, datacenter, or back office.  It can be configured to let any worker scan 1D, 2D, or Micro PDF barcodes with the least number of attempts required, capturing data as it flows organically throughout its lifecycle. The right solution should work on any major scanner or smartphone scanning platform in any environment. Of course, this mobile solution should also require enterprise-grade security from end-to-end, ensuring the data you collect remains uncompromised.  This includes a secure log on, user limited permissions, and encrypted password protection to safely connect to any integrated system through a secure transport layer behind your own firewall.

In a perfect world, multiple-step processes could be configured for different types of users, ensuring intelligent directed decision support and visibility into all inventory at every step -whether the field tech is offline or online. Intelligent decision support tools would allow you to see and control everything you need to accomplish your job, no matter who you are, what mobile platform you are using, or where you are located.

Many ICTs attempt ALM through ERP, OSS, or BSS.  The problem is that these solutions have one common weakness - a disconnect between what happens with assets in the real world and what is reflected in the database.  Instead, ALM sits in the middle of multiple systems and improves the accuracy of their data by means of data reconciliation as well as data collection.  A great ALM solution can reconcile and verify any and all asset data regardless of the source, to provide every connected system with the most accurate data possible, at either a high or low level.  This ensures the integrity of your asset information, reduces the need for physical audits, and serves as the Database of Record for all assets.

ALM includes software, services, asset tags, and mobile hardware to make sure your solution brings you the highest possible asset assurance.  From a best-practice perspective, a productive ALM suite tailors and customizes its routines to match your specific business processes.  This requires up-front business analysis and consulting around the needs of all departments working with network assets (Supply Chain, Engineering, Finance, Operations, and Tax).  It also involves the implementation of process improvements across all departments to maximize operational efficiencies.

As part of the set-up process, there is a data clean up and pre-load of legacy asset data into the ALM database, which may require an audit of all network and warehouse sites.  When that’s completed, the full software solution can be deployed, which includes integration between the ALM application and other key enterprise applications.  To ensure successful adoption, a proper and thorough training of ALM system users also happens up front.   

Fulcrum Technologies’ CATS solution addresses all of these ideal scenarios.

The fact is, equipment and other assets move around a lot during their lifecycle - whether it’s due to regular maintenance, the upheaval of mergers and acquisition activity, or the technology cascade that occurs when new equipment is deployed and old equipment is reassigned to new locations or retired.  Successful ICT organizations use ALM to get visibility, gain insight, and take control of their assets, with the ultimate goal of driving their accuracy score back to the level it was in 1832 - a perfect 100%.   


Fulcrum Technologies Partners with Worldwide Supply

Fulcrum Technologies, a global provider of Asset Lifecycle Management tools, today announced a strategic partnership with Worldwide Supply, a leader in Logistics, Reverse Logistics, and Network Services to Communication Service Providers.


SEATTLE, WA. — February 3, 2016 — Fulcrum Technologies, maker of the CATS Asset Lifecycle Management software, today announced a partnership with Worldwide Supply, a leader in global network asset solutions management. Benefits to Fulcrum customers include deeper services for asset maintenance, return, repair, replacement, warranty services, and decommissioning.

“Worldwide Supply sets the standard for network equipment and deployment services, while Fulcrum sets the standard for powerful, flexible, intelligent ALM” explained Owen Grohman, NetGuard Services Director of Worldwide Supply. “This new partnership with Fulcrum allows for unprecedented Capex and OpEx efficiencies at every stage of a Communication Service Provider’s asset lifecycle.”

Fulcrum’s ALM software, services, asset tags, and mobile hardware compliment Worldwide Supply’s ability to maximize the value of corporate inventory. This joint Asset Lifecycle Management (ALM) solution allows Communication Service Providers (CSPs) the ability to manage complex asset tracking and inventory management issues that are critical to their organization every day. The combined platform is focused on reducing or eliminating the $90 billion Communication Service Providers lose annually to theft, fraud, hoarding, spares misallocations, and operational inefficiencies.

“Fulcrum is delighted to be able to partner with Worldwide Supply and leverage their extensive industry presence and services to CSPs all around the world.  The capability will augment and expand the CATS ALM solution for our mutual clients,” says Mark Bourgoin, EVP of Sales and Marketing for Fulcrum.

Communication Service Providers wanting more visibility, insight, and control of their valuable network assets and infrastructure can visit www.Fulcrum.net, and www.WorldwideSupply.net to learn more.

About Fulcrum Technologies™, Inc. 
Based in Seattle with Asia Pacific headquarters in Gurgaon, India, Fulcrum is the leading provider of Asset Lifecycle Management solutions for CSPs, including wireless and wire-line telecom carriers and Internet and cable providers. Fulcrum’s CATS software allows companies to track the status of their infrastructure assets in real-time and can integrate with other back-office systems such as ERP, OSS, or BSS. CATS enhances operational efficiencies, regulatory compliance, and profitability by improving capital equipment utilization, rationalizing spares allocation, and streamlining the return and repair processes. Fulcrum is used by 3 of the 4 largest telecom providers in North America and has recently been selected by one of the world’s largest providers in APAC.

About Worldwide Supply
Worldwide Supply is the global leader in networking hardware and services solutions with an expertise in the data, wireless, and wireline technology sector. Headquartered in northern New Jersey, with offices in California, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Mexico, New York, Netherlands (Europe), North Carolina, and Texas, Worldwide Supply provides products, asset management programs, technical services, and third-party maintenance to clients globally.

Worldwide Supply backs the products it sells with an industry-leading lifetime warranty and offers products from major manufacturers like Cisco, Juniper, Arris, Alcatel-Lucent, Ericsson, Nokia, and more. Worldwide Supply’s on-hand inventory of current and legacy network and wireless products is valued in excess of $500 million, combined with the flexibility to ship the same business day in many cases. Their products are tested, configured and certified in state-of-the-art global distribution centers throughout North America, South America, and Europe.

Worldwide Supply is TL 9000 and 9001:2008 certified.

Fulcrum Technologies Opens Asia-Pacific Headquarters in Gurgaon, India

Fulcrum Technologies, a global provider of Asset Lifecycle Management tools, today announced the opening of its Asia-Pacific headquarters in Gurgaon, India. Operating under the name Fulcrum ALM Solutions, the new headquarters underscore Fulcrum’s commitment to providing services and support for major Communication Service Providers around the world.

SEATTLE, WA. — November 20, 2015 — The largest expansion and growth among Communication Service Providers (CSPs) in the next three years will come from Asia and Africa. As these CSPs grow their networks, they will need accurate, real-time information about the true state of their network assets and infrastructure.  Fulcrum Technologies, creators of CATS Asset Lifecycle Management (ALM) software, today announced the opening of their international headquarters in Gurgaon to support the CSPs in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region.

“As the communications industry’s leading provider of Asset Lifecycle Management solutions, Fulcrum is growing into new markets where there is a definite need for visibility and control surrounding network assets and infrastructure,” said Brent Bauer, CEO of Fulcrum Technologies. “Our new APAC headquarters in India will help us respond to the increasing international demand for our solutions, and will further our initiative to provide 24x7 support to our customers and partners worldwide.”

Gurgaon, a major technology hub with more than 250 Fortune 500 companies, is a suburb of Delhi and part of the “National Capital Region (NCR)”. It is also located strategically close to the headquarters of some of the largest service providers in the world, including a recently won Fulcrum customer with operations in over 20 countries. This customer has opted to use Fulcrum’s CATS ALM tool to track and manage its widespread network assets and inventory from acquisition to retirement. This includes receipt of goods, spares management, return and repair of equipment, regulatory compliance, and more.



Asset Lifecycle Management for Oil and Gas

ASSET LIFECYCLE MANAGEMENT SOFTWARE (ALM) FOR THE OIL AND GAS INDUSTRY:

CATS ALM Mobility Solutions can be configured to let any oil and gas worker scan 1D, 2D, or Micro PDF barcodes on "tagged" assets with the least amount of attempts required, capturing data as it moves throughout its lifecycle.  This highly configurable software works on any major scanner or smartphone scanning platform... and can be used across drilling rigs, field locations, data centers, back-office areas, and warehouses.  The CATS ALM applications is unique in the fact that it includes comprehensive functionality to support the entire asset lifecycle, from cradle to grave.

What kind of assets are we talking about?

  • Land-based oil and gas drilling rigs
  • Offshore drilling rigs
  • Process manufacturing equipment and plants
  • Power generation plants
  • Aircraft / Components
  • Defense assets including weapons systems, vehicles and facilities
  • Pipeline related assets
  • Power distribution assets

Whether you are planning, designing or maintaining your asset lifecycle management for your oil and gas enterprise, CATS ALM gives you one version of the truth so you can maximize value realized over the asset lifecycle.  And through integration with systems like financial, engineering, supply chain and OSS or BSS applications CATS will greatly improve those systems with accurate, up-to-date information gathered using the superior mobile data collection capabilities within CATS.

CATS is designed for use in the field because that is where the majority of asset transactions take place. So let CATS be the mobile front end to your critical applications that work with your oil and gas asset data.


Fulcrum Technologies Presenting at The Canadian Wireless Show 2015

Fulcrum Technologies’ Brian Hodges to present Asset Lifecycle Management (ALM) solutions at the Canadian Wireless Show, 2015.

SEATTLE, WA. — October 28, 2015 — Today Fulcrum Technologies, makers of the CATS Asset Lifecycle Management (ALM) software, announced their participation as a key speaker at the Canadian Wireless Show 2015 in Toronto on October 28th. Fulcrum Technologies’ Brian Hodges will be presenting CATS Asset Lifecycle Management best practices, which let Communication Service Providers (CSPs) get visibility, gain insight, and take control of their new, existing, and stranded assets.

According to a 2015 TeleManagement Forum survey, asset managers reported an average asset accuracy rate of only 74%.  With 350 billion dollars spent every year on critical network infrastructure globally, this leaves 91 billion dollars in Capex that could have been prevented.  Fulcrum’s goal is to reclaim as much of that 91 billion dollars as possible for Communication Service Providers around the world with powerful, flexible, intelligent Asset Lifecycle Management.

Hodges is definitely one who loves ALM, as well as the impact it makes in the communication service providers Fulcrum helps.  “We make asset gods – the organizational rock stars who put CATS ALM in place and save their company millions or billions of dollars.  If you single-handedly save your enterprise a billion dollars in Capex in today’s competitive market… believe me, you will stand out from the crowd.”

A great vehicle for facilitating ALM discussions, the Canadian Wireless Show brings together wireless and telecommunications professionals that include tech experts, trend analysts, hardware manufacturers, service providers, decision makers, buyers, carriers, retailers and industry executives.

The event is held annually and takes place at the Toronto Congress Centre located minutes away from the Toronto International Airport in Toronto on October 28th and 29th, 2015. The event features over 30 sectors of the wireless and mobile industry with over 120 exhibitors and 2000+ attendees over 2 days.

To find out how you can get visibility, gain insight, and take control of your assets today, please visit www.Fulcrum.net.  

ABOUT FULCRUM TECHNOLOGIES™, INC.

Fulcrum is the leading provider of Asset Lifecycle Management solutions for Communication Service Providers, including wireless and wire-line telecom carriers and Internet and cable providers. Fulcrum’s CATS software allows companies to track the status of their infrastructure assets in real-time while automatically synchronizing with other back-office systems. CATS enhances operational efficiencies, regulatory compliance, and profitability by improving capital equipment utilization, rationalizing spares allocation, and streamlining return and repair processes. Fulcrum (www.Fulcrum.net) is used by 3 of the 4 largest telecom providers in North America and has recently been selected by one of the world’s largest providers in APAC.

Fulcrum Technologies Demonstrating CATS at Cable-Tec Expo ‘15

Fulcrum Technologies to demonstrate Asset Lifecycle Management (ALM) solutions at the Cable-Tec Expo ‘15 with strategic partner MDSI.

Today Fulcrum Technologies, makers of the CATS Asset Lifecycle Management (ALM) software, announced their participation at the Cable-Tec Expo ’15 in New Orleans between October 13-16th. Fulcrum will be demonstrating CATS ALM with strategic partner MDSI, a premier communications company specializing in data and telecom equipment, reverse logistics and investment recovery services. The two companies offer a joint solution to existing customers who seek a broader range of reports and intelligence about their network infrastructure. This solution lets CSPs get visibility, gain insight, and take control of their new, existing, and stranded assets.


About Fulcrum Technologies™, Inc.

Fulcrum is the leading provider of Asset Lifecycle Management solutions for Communication Service Providers, including wireless and wire-line telecom carriers and Internet and cable providers. Fulcrum’s CATS software allows companies to track the status of their infrastructure assets in real-time while automatically synchronizing with other back-office systems. CATS enhances operational efficiencies, regulatory compliance, and profitability by improving capital equipment utilization, rationalizing spares allocation, and streamlining return and repair processes. Fulcrum is used by 3 of the 4 largest telecom providers in North America and has recently been selected by one of the world’s largest providers in APAC. To learn how to get visibility, gain perspective, and take control of your physical assets, please visit www.fulcrum.net.

About MDSI

MDSi provides a proprietary asset intelligence SaaS system, hardware and services solutions for telecom, cable, and data center companies to reduce capital and operating expenditures.  MDSi programs couple asset purchase & deployment requirements with asset lifecycle management to achieve ongoing cost avoidance; simultaneously streamlining technology deployments and operations.   Headquartered in Alpharetta, GA, the MDSI state-of-the-art labs are fully ESD compliant, climate controlled, and supported by our team of OEM certified technicians and engineers. Certifications that they employ include: Full EPA Compliance, ISO 9001:2008, ISO 14001, OHSAS 18001 Certified, R2 Solutions Certification, SSAE-16 Audited, and Certified WBENC – Women’s Business Enterprise.  For more information on MDSi, please visit www.mdsiinc.com

 

The asset management system market is estimated to reach $18.87 billion by 2020

The Asset Management System Market, which includes Asset Lifecycle Management (ALM), Enterprise Asset Management (EAM), and Asset Management Software (AMS) is expected to grow at a higher rate in the coming years. This market has been driven by factors such as: reduction in search time for misplaced assets, increase in adoption rate due to technological advancements, high Return on Investment (ROI), cost saving, and improved supply chain efficiency. The Americas is a major market for Asset Management Systems due to the favorable economic conditions of the North American region and the need to rely on the asset management technologies.

According to a recent report, the asset management system market is estimated to reach $18.87 billion by 2020, at a CAGR of 20.5% from 2014 to 2020.

The report also provides the market dynamics like drivers, restraints, and opportunities. Apart from the market segmentation, the report also includes the critical market data and qualitative information for each product type along with the qualitative analysis, such as the Porter’s five force analysis, value chain analysis, supply chain analysis, and market crackdown analysis.

Fulcrum Technologies Presenting at Tower & Small Cell Summit

Fulcrum Technologies’ Brian Hodges to present Asset Lifecycle Management (ALM) solutions at the Tower & Small Cell Summit at CTIA Super Mobility 2015.

SEATTLE, WA. — September 8, 2015 — Today Fulcrum Technologies, makers of the CATS Asset Lifecycle Management (ALM) software, announced their participation as a key presenter at the Tower & Small Cell Summit at CTIA Super Mobility 2015 in Las Vegas on September 9th. Fulcrum Technologies’ Brian Hodges will be presenting CATS Asset Lifecycle Management best practices, which let Communication Service Providers (CSPs) get visibility, gain insight, and take control of their new, existing, and stranded assets. 

Over 50% of a CSP’s annual capital expenditure is invested in acquiring expensive network assets that are the strength of a CSP’s offering to its customers. The Tower & Small Cell Summit is dedicated to the same objective as CATS: Helping CSPs maximize those investments in critical assets. 

The Tower & Small Cell Summit, co-located with CTIA Super Mobility 2015, will focus on the opportunities and hurdles CSPs face during this mobile broadband revolution, giving them the necessary insight to remain competitive and profitable. The conference program is led by well-respected analysts, practitioners and consultants who will discuss and analyze the critical issues and trends shaping the industry. Registered attendees from both the Tower & Small Cell Summit and CTIA Super Mobility 2015 will be able to attend the CATS presentation for no additional cost.

To find out how you can get visibility, gain insight, and take control of your assets today, please visit www.Fulcrum.net.   

About Fulcrum Technologies™, Inc.

Fulcrum is the leading provider of Asset Lifecycle Management solutions for Communication Service Providers, including wireless and wire-line telecom carriers and Internet and cable providers. Fulcrum’s CATS software allows companies to track the status of their infrastructure assets in real-time while automatically synchronizing with other back-office systems. CATS enhances operational efficiencies, regulatory compliance, and profitability by improving capital equipment utilization, rationalizing spares allocation, and streamlining return and repair processes. Fulcrum (www.Fulcrum.net) is used by 3 of the 4 largest telecom providers in North America and has recently been selected by one of the world’s largest providers in APAC. 

Fulcrum Technologies Presenting at OSP Expo

Fulcrum Technologies’ Brian Hodges and Mark Bourgoin to present Asset Lifecycle Management (ALM) solutions at the OSP Expo on September 3, 2015 with strategic partner Subex. 

SEATTLE, WA. — August 31, 2015 — Today Fulcrum Technologies, makers of the CATS Asset Lifecycle Management (ALM) software, announced their participation as a key presenter at the OSP Expo in Denver Colorado on September 3rd at 9:15 AM Mountain Time. Fulcrum partner Subex Limited, a leading provider of Business and Operations Support Systems (B/OSS), will be co-presenting their integrated network discovery software. The joint solution lets CSPs get visibility, gain insight, and take control of their new, existing, and stranded assets.

Communication Service Providers (CSPs) need accurate information about the "as is" state of their networks in order to properly manage and account for the deep investments made in these networks. The partnership between Fulcrum, whose software is used by 3 of the 4 largest telecom providers in North America, and Subex, which has more than 300 installations across 70 countries globally, underscores both companies’ commitments to providing CSPs with a complete picture of how their network assets are returning value over their lifecycle.   


About Fulcrum Technologies, Inc.

Fulcrum is the leading provider of Asset Lifecycle Management solutions for Communication Service Providers, including wireless and wire-line telecom carriers and Internet and cable providers. Fulcrum’s CATS software allows companies to track the status of their infrastructure assets in real-time while automatically synchronizing with other back-office systems. CATS enhances operational efficiencies, regulatory compliance, and profitability by improving capital equipment utilization, rationalizing spares allocation, and streamlining return and repair processes. Fulcrum is used by 3 of the 4 largest telecom providers in North America and has recently been selected by one of the world’s largest providers in APAC. To learn how to get visibility, gain perspective, and take control of your physical assets, please visit www.fulcrum.net.

About Subex Limited

Subex Limited is a leading global provider of Business and Operations Support Systems (B/OSS) that empowers communications service providers (CSPs) to achieve competitive advantage through Business Optimization, thereby enabling them to improve their operational efficiency to deliver enhanced service experiences to subscribers. 

The company pioneered the concept of a Revenue Operations Centre (ROC®) – a centralized approach that sustains profitable growth and financial health through coordinated operational control. Subex's product portfolio powers the ROC and its best-in-class solutions such as revenue assurance, fraud management, asset assurance, capacity management, data integrity management, credit risk management, cost management, route optimization, and partner settlement. Subex's customers include 29 of top 50 operators* and 33 of the world’s 50 biggest# telecommunications service providers worldwide. The company has more than 300 installations across 70 countries.

*Total Telecom Top 500 Telecom Brands, 2013

#Forbes’ Global 2000 list, 2014

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© Copyright 2015. Fulcrum Technologies and CATS are trademarks of Fulcrum Technologies, Inc., in the USA and/or other countries. All products or brand names mentioned are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders.

 

Contact us:


Fulcrum Technologies:

Brian Hodges

1-206-336-5656


Sales inquiries: Sales@fulcrum.net
 

Press inquiries: PR@fulcrum.net

ALM Can Automate Transportation and Logistics

Logistics accuracy and timing is critical to customers. If you’re a business and deliver the wrong item or fail to deliver it on-time then you have likely lost that customer’s business. To achieve a right first-time delivery we recommend automating your collection and delivery processes to incorporate mobile computers, wearable computers and other barcode equipment, along with our software solutions to give you visibility, insight, and control of your moving assets. Here are some logistics areas that can be automated to provide a more accurate and quicker process that ensures a better customer experience.

Sortation and Vehicle Loading – Sorting and loading the right packages is critical for delivery accuracy. Any failed delivery or return results in a cost to the business. With wearable mobile computers and voice-based software, you can more quickly and easily sort and load packages. 

Dispatch – Hundreds of thousands of dollars are lost each year on fuel costs that are a result of ineffective routes and delivery scheduling. ALM can provide your business with continuously optimal reliable routes while using fewer trucks, miles and drivers. It also enables real-time appointment scheduling in order to keep fleet operations productive and profitable while increasing customer satisfaction.

Delivery and Collection – Confirmation and proof of delivery is the final element of item tracking. However, many times package deliveries cannot be confirmed due to lost paperwork. Using a mobile computer and point of delivery software allows a driver to confirm the proof of delivery.

Vehicle Checks For Accuracy– Missing paperwork, illegible handwriting and sorting through dozens of paperwork can make collecting manual data from drivers a nightmare. With our technology, we have the ability to transform paper documents into an automated form that is accessible through a mobile computer. 

For more information on how Fulcrum can help automate your transportation and logistics asset processes give one of our experts a call to get a free consultation for your logistics solution.  Click HERE.

Can I Print My Barcode on a Colored Background?

It is possible to print your barcode in something other than black and white however the ability to scan the barcode depends on there being a good level of contrast between the background and the unique bars.  So, a light yellow barcode on a white back ground would not work well whereas a dark blue on a white back ground would scan fine in most scenarios. It is a good idea to do a test scan before printing on all of your products.  Also remember, as scanners get more and more accurate, this becomes less and less of an issue.


What Information is Encoded in a Barcode?

 A retail barcode is, in most simple terms, a unique number or name (or any alpha numeric combination) encoded as an image. As such it does not contain any company or product information encoded into it, which means there is no risk of detailed proprietary information or IP being compromised. When the barcode goes into retail stores or warehouses, the product information is attached to the related barcode in the store’s scanning system so that when the barcode is scanned it links the active data base to the associated product information.

When Should You Use an EAN-13 vs a UPC-A?

UPC-A Barcodes are effectively a subset of EAN-13 Barcodes. If the first digit on the EAN-13 number is a ‘0’, then the bars will be of both the EAN-13 and the UPC-A (without the leading ‘0’) will be identical. The displacement of the human readable numbers below differ between the UPC-A and EAN-13 barcodes however, this is the biggest difference. Both barcodes can be scanned by the majority of scanners easily.

UPC-A Format barcodes have traditionally been used in the USA, whereas EAN-13 format barcodes have been used throughout the rest of the world. Nowadays, the majority of stores throughout the world accept barcodes in either format. Howevers there may be some older systems that only accept one or the other. This means that if your product is being sold in the USA , the UPC-A format barcodes are best, however if your product is international, or sold in a country other than the USA, an EAN-13 Barcode is best.

If you come across a store that has difficulty reading your EAN-13 or UPC-A Barcode, they can either ignore the leading ‘0’ or add a leading ‘0’ depending on how many digits their system prefers. If this is done, the barcode will read exactly the same as the opposite format (as the bars are identical regardless), and will still be globally unique.

Bar Code Labels and Heat:

Many everyday labeling applications such as on printed circuit boards require printed bar codes, safety and warning labels with legibility and adhesive bonds that must survive high temperatures – upwards of 500 degrees F. Labels that fail are visible by your customers and can mean costly interruptions in production or shipping. 

(Shown here are the effects of time and temperature (315oC / 600oF for 50 minutes) on a "standard" polyimide label from a competitor, compared to a new generation, lead free polyimide label TT407. These new polyimide labels are designed for the higher temperatures required for lead free soldering processes.)

What do you need to know to avoid this?

Labels exposed to higher temperatures are subject to shrinkage, discoloration, peeling, lifting, and cracking.  Shrinkage can distort bar codes and produce an adhesive halo on the substrate. Bar codes may not scan correctly, information is lost. The adhesive bleed may interfere with how labels come off the liner, apply to the product or attract dust/dirt. 

Resistance to discoloration is another important feature of high temperature label materials to protect the clarity of printed information, product identification, and bar code scanning. High temperature labels are matched with adhesives that perform without lifting, peeling or drop-off.

Having the right balance between “shear”, “tack” and “peel” assures proper adhesion when applied, during expected use, and at removal for best performance of the adhesive at high temperatures.

Assessing The Variables

One of the key factors to consider is the maximum temperature and duration of that temperature in which the label will be expected to perform. These two factors are key to determining the correct label material for your application and will assure excellent performance.

Will the label face the high temperature when the labeled product is in the manufacturing process? If your label faces a combination of heat, abrasion and chemical exposure you may need an overlaminate to protect the label performance.

What about labels subject to both high and low temperatures? Certain durable label materials are designed to go from one extreme to another. It’s always best to know this up front.

Will variable information be added to the label?  This may impact the selection of label material, overlaminate areas or ribbon choice. In some instances, a topcoat is added to the label surface for best printability and durability.

Making the Right Choice

Working with your label converter up front will address key questions to determine the right pressure-sensitive labeling product for your  [WincoID_pcb_2D] application.

Often, a simple polyester will provide the performance required. Polyester has very good thermal resistance, along with excellent clarity, chemical resistance, and durability.

White polyester is a popular choice for material tracking labels, safety/hazard/instructional labels, and product identification labels, and clear polyester is often used as an overlaminate.

- See more at: http://barcode.com/20110928685/bar-code-labels-that-take-the-heat.html#sthash.ZABqOSvz.dpuf