Kamik Takes a Step in a Modern Direction with Profound Logic
- Company: Kamik
- Industry: Manufacturing & Distributing
- Business Challenge: Green screen UIs, fixed-format RPG, static desktop apps
- Solutions: REST APIs to extend RPG programs with Node.js, and call data from multiple sources into a dashboard; Mobile applications; Fixed-to-Free format RPG conversion for new developers
Trevor McCullough, Director of IT at Kamik, attended the COMMON POWERUp conference and made a stark realization: his applications hadn’t kept pace with the business. They needed to take a step in a modern direction, and that’s what led them to partner with Profound Logic.
Trevor McCullough, Director of IT at Kamik, attended the COMMON POWERUp conference and made a stark realization: his applications hadn’t kept pace with the business.
“We really needed to give our end users a better user experience. The green screens were just not cutting it anymore.” Trevor admitted. They needed to take a step in a modern direction.
In a world of ever-changing business requirements, Trevor knew his staff needed to be better equipped to handle them.
He began to imagine all the ways completely modern business applications would aid his business. Ideally, updating the applications would do more than add a pretty UI. He envisioned a modern business system that enabled users to access valuable business data and better support their customers.
He eventually had a clear vision of exactly what he wanted his applications to do, he just wasn’t sure how he’d get there.
“We really needed to give our end users a better user experience. The green screens were just not cutting it anymore.”
Trevor started by updating the source code of his critical business applications, converting the bulk of his code base from fixed-format to free-format RPG. Not only did this improve the functionality of his applications, it made it possible for Sarah Taylor, a computer engineer right out of college to take the reins on the modernization project.
The next step was to improve user interfaces. Trevor and Sarah began evaluating the different UI modernization products available in the IBM I (AS/400) space. They discovered Profound Logic’s toolset, which allowed them to do that, and much more.
Profound Logic provides software and services for integrated, scalable, and portable business applications. With Profound Logic solutions, businesses can modernize their existing applications and go beyond to enable mobile applications, Node.js development, and digital transformation technologies.
With Profound Logic’s tools, Trevor created Genisys 4: a comprehensive web and mobile platform that has transformed the way Kamik does business. Sales reps can now access their entire product catalog from their iPads and generate custom PDFs on the fly when meeting with retail customers.
Genisys 4 also empowers Kamik’s sales, marketing, and accounting departments to monitor valuable business metrics via a customizable analytics dashboard.
And manufacturing wasn’t left out. When Kamik’s VP of manufacturing began evaluating third-party software solutions to improve their production, Trevor assured he could build a better application himself using Profound tools. In a very short period of time, he built a mobile application that was able to measure and improve Kamik’s manufacturing efficiency.
On top of the modern RPG applications Trevor and his team have built to aid their business, they’ve also began to take advantage of the flexible open source language, Node.js.
“RPG has been doing really well for us, but we also needed another language that gave us a little more flexibility. That’s why we’ve purchased Profound.js.”
With the help of Profound API, Trevor has built several Node.js IBM i applications that allow him to, in his words, “extend the platform”. He can now quickly integrate with other systems via REST API, call web services, and take advantage of npm packages to speed up his development.
One of Trevor’s Node applications processes orders from multiple locations including Amazon, EDI, and Kamik’s internal Magento application. “Once it gathers all the information from all these different inputs, it goes through the process of integrating the orders automatically through the ERP system and actually allocating picking and going down to our WMS (warehouse management software).” Trevor says.
Profound.js allows Kamik’s Node.js and RPG applications to work together and with external systems smoothly.
“The integration is seamless. Calling another RPG program or Node.js program is incredibly simple.”
As Trevor continues to develop beyond what he thought was possible on IBM i, he’s found that the only limit his business applications has is his own imagination.