Dave Corfman | Shepherd Material Science Company | Tech Power Player | ComSpark | Technology

welcome to comm spark today we are in Cincinnati Ohio my name is olivia curie fuqua and i will be your guest host today i would like to welcome our guest david Curfman the enterprise application manager at Shepherd color so David a lot of organizations are starting to implement cloud strategy would you tell me a little bit about your company's cloud strategy sure well Olivia we started with course custom programming custom applications and we know that that's not sustainable and we also don't want to be a software development company we're a manufacturer so we started using best practices best applications that are available on the cloud you know now that we've got our infrastructure in place it was a pretty easy step to move over into more of software-as-a-service and that's where we are with the cloud we're not doing much other than just reaching out and using an application here an application there okay so can you explain a little bit more about how you decided which applications you would move to the cloud which applications you would keep on Prem well good question we had to do a road map of all the applications that we have we have over 200 applications or software packages that we have at Shepherd color and Shepherd chemical companies us we just kind of started prioritizing how old are they do they have modern technology old technology technology that's not in not supported anymore and which of those are at highest risk at that point we also had to figure out the cost of replacing them and once we figured out the ones that were most important to get replaced we worked on that okay and some organizations look at the cloud as a way to take advantage of of the economic advantages like scaling up scaling down can you give us a little bit of insight into your experience with that cost analysis and the economic impact we didn't do much of that because we're not doing that much scaling up and down so that really wasn't a factor in our in our decisions I know it is for some companies but that wasn't an issue if we were to go to office 365 that might play into it okay so do you believe in the next two to five years your cloud strategy within the organization might shift and if so how would that change that could it might shift and I just mention office 365 right now we use Microsoft Office the productivity suite on Prem we might be going to the cloud for that we might move to a desktop on as a service daas that would be the only shift that I see coming right now Olivia okay awesome so I'd like to shift just a little bit into cybersecurity it's a top of my priority for most organizations what is your internal communication with say new hires and communicating your own internal cybersecurity policies is it part of your onboarding process it is we we stress how important it is we have training videos that are required for all of our employees actually but certainly part of the onboarding process we are doing fish fishing training we do not want you know bad emails coming in as a common way as you know viruses etc getting into our network we're doing that constantly also when they log in we do have the occasional message that pops up listening you can't be doing this don't do that and our security and the backend we're just always looking for any virus coming in okay and again kind of shifting to just another topic around the this the inner and your technology as far as data analytics do you all have a specific policy and maybe how does that play into your cloud strategy for collecting analyzing normalizing data within your environment well we've we have a couple a RP packages and we are consolidating to one so that's where the data of record is but we also bring that data in to our data warehouse regular basis right whether it's a real-time or at night and then we've got the data warehouses there that's where we're just doing more and more reporting it's just been that very appreciated by the end users the ease of use for we're using halo and that's going real well so more and more reporting functions are coming from that we've got a top-notch couple developers working on that a couple consultants helping as well the training is going very easily I know I've found it very easy to use for the financials for the IT department and using me as an example I know the others are getting a lot of use out of our data warehouse some great so you mentioned your ERP solution can you give us a little bit more information about what a year period using and you know that's helping you leverage different business processes within the organization yeah glad to we've put in Microsoft Dynamics AX and two of our companies but the third company Shepherd Chemical we just we are in the process of upgrading our sa P in implementation and then we'll put sa P and the other two companies as well so we are consolidating onto one ERP package si P with the SI P we're using a lot of the best practices we've had other small packages like our manufacturing execution system few more for inventory control but we are trying to consolidate all into sa P and that's going to drive things very well for us in the future and I know s ap has a really strong cloud offering as well does that factor in at all and your decision-making when you're looking at moving over to an SI p erp solution it did and we are well we're using a local implementer here and we're using their their facilities and it's all off of our premises it's on in their data center and we just tap into theirs and we'll be going live here later this year again using their data center it's exciting it is and we're looking forward to us that we don't have it all on in our data center data obviously all the data recovery business recovery is all on them not us we just put a t1 line in and we're all we're all good awesome that sounds great hey thanks David for being on the program we appreciate it you know welcome is a pleasure Olivia I would like to thank David for joining us today and for those listening to the interview to learn more go to comm spark tech

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