1. Railroad Automates Capital Program Planning

Business Problem:

A Class I railroad has 14 maintenance plants across the US where locomotives and passenger cars are repaired and maintained. Included are facilities that do Capital Improvements on the rolling stock, including complete overhauls. The Procurement Department prepares its capital funding requirements annually.

Procurement had no automated tools to evaluate the Planned Production Schedules from the Engineering Systems and compile capital purchase requirements. Inventory Planners spent months meeting with directors of the major facilities to obtain capital work projections and corresponding material requirements. Material requirements were manually analyzed using spreadsheets to create purchase orders to suppliers.

Solution:

Dumas Software automated the entire process by developing a Web Application that imports Planned Bills of Material from the Engineering System and translates the material requirements into Supplier Orders for the ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning system). The tool applies the plant schedules, aggregates demand from all locations, evaluates existing inventory levels, calculates the material to be purchased and creates orders in the ERP. Extensive management analysis and reporting is included to facilitate annual funding requests to the FRA (Federal Railroad Administration.) The Capital Program Planning process was reduced from many months to a few weeks.

2. Equipment Maintenance Facilities Dramatically Reduce Part Returns

Business Problem:

A customer with warehouses and maintenance facilities coast to coast needed to reduce the time required to accurately identify a part. Incorrect parts were being pulled for maintenance work, resulting in costly delays and part returns.

While electronic order fulfillment and catalogs were in use, shop clerks still struggled to identify the right part by item number, text description, and schematics.

Solution:

Dumas Software designed a web application where photos of parts are captured upon receipt or via exception reports. Each photo is linked to the unique part number in the ERP and the electronic catalog, and a watermark of the ID is applied to the image. Images are available across the enterprise immediately, allowing all locations to verify that work orders are being fulfilled with the right part, the first time. So far, warehouse personnel have captured more than 20,000 photos and part returns have been dramatically reduced.

3. International Manufacturer Takes PO Approval to Mobile Devices

Business Problem:

An international manufacturing company with many locations was using a mainframe legacy VSAM ERP system. Purchase approval managers in the United States, Europe, and Mexico desperately needed an easy way to review and approve Purchase Orders from their desktops and handheld devices, while offline from the legacy system.

Solution:

Dumas Software designed and implemented Web based software that works directly with the mainframe VSAM database without the expense and overhead of third-party middleware. Screens have multilingual options and are accessed via web browsers. Managers can easily review, add, change, or delete MR’s and PO’s – anywhere, anytime. The application includes e-mail notification, with hyperlinks that allow employees to approve or deny PO’s with one click, greatly reducing PO approval routing time.

4. European Railroad Streamlines Supply Chain

Business Problem:

A European railroad was upgrading and modernizing 400 miles of rail and stations to accommodate high speed trains. The existing supply chain process was fragmented, with most of the responsibility delegated to installation contractors. The railroad needed someone to analyze the supply chain, identify problems and opportunities, and make recommendations to streamline and manage the process.

Solution:

Dumas Software interviewed program stakeholders to document existing information flows and business systems in use. Four major problems were identified and Dumas developed a plan for incremental process improvement that provided immediate benefit with minimal risk or up-front investment. The plan allowed the railroad to identify capacity constraints with suppliers, initiate volume buying and improve the efficiency of the supply chain.

Technology Used

Systems and Technology: .Net and Java Web technology, Crystal Reports, IBM CICS mainframe technology.
Databases: SQL Server, Oracle, DB2, VSAM, AS400.
Integration: XML, SOAP, RFC, Web Services, DB2 Connect, FTP, EDI.