Registrations are now being taken for this inaugural event scheduled for September 25-27, 2018 in Ann Arbor.
Advantage Academy is a 3-day workshop hosted by AdvantageCS providing attendees with practical, hands-on experience across a wide range of Advantage topics.
Throughout our history, our most successful clients are the ones that have optimized their use of Advantage. They run Advantage efficiently and they learn and make use of the most number of Advantage features.
The Academy is designed to help you to optimize your use of Advantage to best support your business initiatives. You’ll increase your Advantage knowledge and use of the system by spending time with our experts in hands-on sessions over the three days. Staff will also be available to answer any questions you bring …
Bob Gray has the distinction of having more years of seniority at AdvantageCS than the company has been in business. That’s because Bob was working at one of the firms that merged to become T & B Computing (the original name of AdvantageCS) and was able to count his years of service there when T & B Computing was formed.
In his 40+ years here, Bob has witnessed remarkable changes in operating systems, programming languages and software technology. When he first began his career in computing, he programmed in Fortran for a mainframe computer, even using card decks on occasion, and had to debug using core dumps (or hex dumps). Access to the computer was through shared terminals in a terminal room, where they were connected via phone modems running 300 baud. Reports and data were …
After a monumental effort to lift all payment card processing functionality out of Advantage, shift it into an independent application, and further enhance its security features, the new Advantage Card Vault is now rolling out to AdvantageCS clients. (See the article announcing this new application here.) This massive project involved planning, development, quality assurance, deployment, communication, and project management efforts across the company. After thousands of hours of effort, the result is an application that provides continued PA-DSS certification and robust payment card security, while allowing Advantage to appear virtually unchanged to the end user.
AdvantageCS clients receiving Advantage Card Vault with their 2018.0 (or higher) updates are reporting that end-user …
Karl Davis started at AdvantageCS nearly 34 years ago, as a programmer/analyst assigned to what was then called the CIR development team. He spent 20 years on that team, 15 or so as its leader, until he was named to head up the newly-formed Engineering Consulting and Implementations team. That has been Karl’s home for the past 14 years.
Dan Heffernan knew Karl before he joined AdvantageCS. “I was a housemate of Karl’s in 1983. Karl has always been meticulous, as well as precise, neat and tidy. So, when another housemate changed his oil in Karl’s garage and then proceeded to spill some on the floor and back the car out leaving dark, oily tire marks down the driveway--- well, it was all Karl could do to keep from destroying the driveway and re-paving it! Only the cost stopped him. Our …
This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Advantage Support Center as it exists today. Prior to 1998, support was handled by the analyst teams, who also managed implementation projects and software upgrades, plus account management and training. With that model, however, team members often found themselves juggling conflicting priorities between their various roles. The solution was to form a team of analysts and engineers entirely devoted to support.
The center now has a full-time staff of four, plus a manager, and analysts from other teams help on occasion. Depending on the client and the issue, any one of half-dozen engineering teams provides technical assistance. Twenty-four hours a day, 365 days a year, the Advantage Support Center is available and its staff is eager to help. …
Congratulations to Mike Hasey on his promotion to Manager, Engineering Services/Implementations. This group of six engineers is primarily responsible for supporting the engineering aspects of client onboarding. The team works with new clients unfamiliar with Advantage as well as current clients that are implementing major additional functionality.
Their work involves integrations, eCommerce (Cider) and complex conversions, in addition to general technical support. They do custom development, provide training, and help design solutions in these (and other) areas.
For many of these tasks, engineering and analyst roles overlap one another. Several members of Mike’s team have served as business analysts and all the team enjoy onsite client visits. Mike is getting the group more involved …
Report on 2018 Advantage Users Group Conference
More than 70 Advantage clients from 17 companies met in Orlando for the 2018 Advantage Users Group (AUG) Conference. As always, the Steering Committee, led by Christy Wescott of Unity World Headquarters, did an outstanding job preparing the agenda and arranging for the speakers and session hosts. Denise Spickler of Wolters Kluwer Health handled her responsibilities as the liaison with the host hotel with outstanding attention to detail, resulting in a conference that was successful in every way.
Dan Heffernan, AdvantageCS Vice President of Sales, Marketing, and Product Planning, kicked off the meeting with his annual presentation of AdvantageCS news, strategy, and product direction. Dan was joined in his presentation by Tony Pytlak, …
We are extremely pleased to welcome Mediahuis to the Advantage family.
Mediahuis was founded in 2013 as a joint venture of two Flemish media corporations, Corelio and Concentra. Based in Antwerp, Belgium, Mediahuis publishes four Belgian newspapers---two national and two regional---and two Dutch newspapers---one regional and one national. It also recently acquired 95% of the Dutch Telegraaf Media Groep, which doubled its circulation size and added a large group of daily and weekly publications. The company’s history dates back to 1879, when their first newspaper, a weekly, was published.
In the 139 years since, there have been numerous launches and acquisitions of media companies, with properties including radio stations, television stations, classified platforms and websites. The …
Initiated by Carsten Weber from Bonnier Magazine Data, Nordic Advantage clients and AdvantageCS participated in a GDPR roundtable on January 22nd, at the Bonnier office in Copenhagen. What was initially a meeting of two publishers expanded to include four Nordic Advantage clients: Bonnier Magazine Data, Egmont Publishing, Aller Media and Alma Talent. Air Business Subscriptions from the UK also joined this gathering, as did AdvantageCS.
Participants included John Osborn (Air Business Subscriptions), Bjarne Christensen (Aller Media), Christel Heegaard (Aller Media), Martin Paluszewski (Aller Media), Mari Aalto (Alma Media), Hanna Kaivo-oja (Alma Media), Farhoud Fazeli (consultant, representing Bonnier Magazines and Brands), Rune Spanggaard (Bonnier Magazine Data), Carsten Weber (Bonnier …
2017 was a year.
I know…that seems obvious. But 2017 was loaded with the good, the bad, and some lessons learned from it all. Here are 5 that jumped out at me as we finish up 2017:
1. Publishers are moving into membership modelsSome years ago, we had a publishing client who published books and magazines around various special interests. But you couldn’t “subscribe” to the products; you had to be a “member” to get them. Their belief was that a “member” was more loyal than a “subscriber.” Given the interest areas they served (hunting and fishing and the like) I suspect that their low attrition rates were also due to the passion of their readers, rather than exclusively due to a clever marketing ploy around the word “member.” But lo and behold, Meredith (who is in the process of buying …