When your slogan is “Excellence in Plating,” you need more than expert metal finishers, you need a business solution that empowers your employees to efficiently manage their work.

Your solution, in addition, has to fit the diverse needs of your customers, from large aerospace contractors to boutique metal manufacturers. It needs to flexibly track complex jobs and interface with your payroll and accounting systems.

Most importantly, to remain effective, this solution has to change and grow along with the business. That’s the challenge Kosada took on in 2006, in supporting and expanding an existing custom software application consisting of over 130,000 lines of Java code. PMApp performs several essential operations at Erie Plating Company, tracking work orders through estimation, multi-step finishing processes, final QC/inspection and, if needed, formal certification. It records employee work time, produces payroll and management reports, and generates invoices and shipping documents.

Kosada’s goals were to provide continuing maintenance and upgrades, with an eye for performance improvements, cost savings, and increased utility.

  • Performance improvements:
    • Added support for faster, next-generation laptops and printers.
    • Increased speed and reliability by rebuilding the server infrastructure, using software virtualization and modern hardware.
    • Changed the PMApp export interface to export financial information to new, more capable accounting software.
  • Cost savings:
    • Modified the software and completed a data migration to use the free and open-source PostgreSQL database instead of a proprietary database that required license renewal and maintenance fees, resulting in a net savings of over $150,000.
    • Modified the software to use the free and open-source RLIB reporting engine, replacing an outdated, inflexible, and costly proprietary reporting engine.
  • Increased utility:
    • Integrated new business rules, allowing the software to process new department information.
    • Provided more insight for management by working with owners and employees to gather requirements and produce new automated reports. These reports help management more easily track repeat clients, view new sales reports, and find and eliminate common process errors.

Kosada developer Jaymie Strecker adds: "In our 14+ years working with Erie Plating Company, we've appreciated getting to know not only their systems but their people. Supporting PMApp is rewarding because it helps everyone at the plant be able to do their jobs well."