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Challenge:
A global food distributor hosts an annual food show where vendors set up booths and buyers attend to sample products and make orders for their business. A custom software solution was needed to help run the food show smoothly from start to finish. The software needed to handle pre-registration, registration on the spot, order entry for products ordered at the show, and redemption certificates for buying incentives. Hundreds of vendors and buyers attend the show ordering millions of dollars in products so the show requires high availability applications and minimal user input time.


Solution:
Apex engineered a custom software solution to handle the challenges faced by the wholesaler. The software suite generates bar codes for registration and pre-registration so when a buyer checks in at the show their name badge is scanned and they are admitted to the show. We integrated the food show application with their AS400 mainframe to pull down product codes for each vendor’s goods, as well as the vendor account information. Each vendor is provided with labels for their products and quantity bar codes so the buyer selects a price and quantity of a product and places it on their order entry form. The form would then be handed in for order entry and before the buyer left their orders would be in the system and they would be presented with a receipt of purchases.


Impact:
By utilizing barcode technology we eliminated the need for hand written customer registration and order entry which reduced keying errors in the process and drastically reduced the time required to check in attendees and enter orders. Previously duplicate entry was required for the food show and back at the corporate office to get the order information in to the AS400 mainframe but we streamlined the process by integrating the food show software with mainframe and submitting the orders in batches. This eliminated many man hours required to enter orders in two autonomous systems.