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  • Customer Portrait: Agora Publishing, Inc.

      Agora, Inc. is a holding company for more than 20 publishers of financial, health, travel and special interest books and newsletters -- each offering unique ideas, information and insights. Altogether, Agora companies publish more than 300 books and 40 newsletters, reaching 1 million readers from around the world.  Based in the historic Mount Vernon district of Baltimore, Agora is housed in a collection of 19th century mansions. They also have offices in London, Bonn, Paris, Johannesburg, Buenos Aires, Melbourne and Waterford, and many of their titles are available in French, Spanish, German and Italian. The company's name has its origin in history.  The Agora was a lively marketplace for the ancient Greeks, where people came not only to buy and sell goods …



  • ACS Marks 30th Anniversary

    On July 1st, Advantage Computing Systems will celebrate 30 years of serving the publishing industry.  The company is hosting a picnic later this month for current and former employees and their families at the Ann Arbor site.  In addition to large grills to cook hamburgers, hot dogs and chicken, inflatable jump tents and other amusement items are being brought in.  Games and prizes will keep the little ones happy and for older "children," the dunk tank is a popular attraction (although perhaps not for those sitting in it!).   The Velcro wall and padded jousting suits are also good for some laughs.   The forerunners of what is today Advantage Computing Systems began operating in 1979, although the company—then T & B Computing—was not officially incorporated …



  • ACS Is Here to Help

    We are in the middle of the conference and trade show rush of late spring/early summer as I write this.  June, like December, is one of the busiest months of the year with school concerts, plays, final exams, graduations, parties, weddings, anniversaries, Father's Day and, if you're blessed like my family, numerous birthdays.  To add to the busyness, The Society for Scholarly Publishing, SIPA and Audience Development all have their annual conferences and exhibitions during the same period.  By the time July comes, we're ready for a holiday. My complaining is really a fraud, however, because the trade shows are enjoyable work.   In many of these organizations, the same attendees are there year after year and we have formed friendships …



  • Leadership Directories Goes Live on Advantage

    ACS is pleased to announce that Leadership Directories began live operations in May 2009.  Based in New York City, Leadership Directories joins Advantage's East Coast line-up.    As a leading provider of contact and biographical information, Leadership Directories maintains a rich database of over 400,000 government, corporate, legal, and nonprofit professionals. Leadership Directories content is available to subscribers through innovative online directories, customized lists and data-feeds, and quarterly and semiannual print directories.   Leadership Directories began looking for a new fulfillment system over 4 years ago to replace an outdated system. Their primary objective was to find a system capable of supporting their existing print business and flexible enough to handle …



  • A Sneak Peek at Some 2009r2 Features

    Here are just some of the new features available in Advantage 2009R2. Access Management & Billing (AMB) - The AMB module now incorporates renewal statistics tracking, similar to functionality in the CIR module.  The AMB340 process (regular renewals) and AMB350 process (auto-renews) will now auto-assign renewal promotion codes.  Also, renewal responses to AMB promotions are reflected on the CPNPMO-M promotions statistics table, at the agreement level.  A new promotion table, AMBPMO-M, reflects response statistics at the level of the access point. The Customer Overview display now incorporates the same routing functionality that is available in the Customer Portrait.  From the Overview, you can access a number of different Advantage informational …



  • All About Advantage Alerts

    Have you ever been affected by this condition in Advantage: "System may hang after applying new security"? If so, did you know there's an easy workaround you can do to avoid it?  It can be found here. This workaround is just one of dozens of Advantage Alerts, which form a knowledge-base of software conditions that may affect your business.  Critical alerts (those that are high frequency or severe in nature) are emailed directly to your inbox using Advantage's communication templates.  We also use the Alert system to send general customer service announcements or reminders to you, such as holiday office hours and the like. If you are not currently receiving email alerts, but would like to, simply send a request to supportatadvantagecs.com asking to …



  • Customer Donations: A Way to Build Goodwill

    I'm buying crickets for my daughter's lizard, and the clerk asks me if I want to donate to a pet shelter by rounding up my purchase.  On a flight, I'm promoted to donate to the airlines' charity of the month.  With my American Express bill, I get another opportunity to donate. Donations are no longer the exclusive domain of charitable organizations, they have gone mainstream.  And if you choose to institute a donation program at your company, Advantage offers support in managing it. Collecting donations is a way for an organization to demonstrate their commitment to social responsibility and involve their customers in doing some good.  The cause is benefited and the customers feel increased loyalty to the organization.  It's a win win ? mostly. There is a …



  • Penton Upgrade and Consolidation Go Live: More Than Your Typical Upgrade!

    Penton Media, formerly known as Intertec, just completed a comprehensive seven-month project that included an upgrade that took them from Advantage 7.0-0 to Advantage 2008r3. In addition to making an eight-year jump in Advantage revisions, the company consolidated the Penton Media Loveland, Colorado into the upgraded Overland Park, Kansas operation.  The two business units now co-exist in one happily united installation of Advantage at the Kansas location.  To make things even more exciting, the project also involved implementing two new modules, Conference and Event (CEM) and Access Management and Billing (AMB).  This involved several CIR to AMB conversions, some software modifications, and a complete rewrite of their web interface.  Additionally, Overland …



  • Using Search Filters

    Smart Searches allow users to restrict the display of table entries to those of most interest to the user. Using the "Search For" field, you can enter a search string that would limit the display to only those entries that satisfy the string.  Using the "Search For" field There are different ways you can enter your search string, which will then result in different entries appearing: Entry of a string returns matches on the exact string (e.g., ZA will return all matches on that string). Entry of strings separated by spaces returns matches that satisfy all strings (e.g., Z(space) A will return all matches that contain both a Z and an A). Use of double quotes will perform an exact (literal) search on the string (e.g., "Z( …



  • Levi Hyssong: Travailleur Exceptionnel

    Levi started his career at ACS as an intern in the customer service division (CSD).  He was working on his degree in computer science from the University of Michigan at that time, and although he enjoyed programming, he did not want to do that full-time.  He thought that the job in CSD might be better suited to his skills and abilities than an engineering position, and he was right.  As an intern, Levi worked in the Advantage Support Center, led by Ev Acton.  There, he began learning the software and becoming familiar with Advantage clients.  Upon graduation in the spring of 2007, he joined ACS full-time and moved to the Major Projects division under Tim Zapawa. Levi's primary job in Major Projects is managing implementations of Advantage for new clients.  Since …



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