The Past and the Future of CAPA Management Systems. Where Will You Fit In?
These are just a few questions you have to ask yourself as business management practices and regulations are continually changed and expanded. The following information may serve you like a recipe book for your future success…
Should I purchase a program or develop one in-house?
In today’s market, you may find many off-the-shelf software products on the market. On the other hand, you may also want to take the chance and develop your own in-house program with an in-house team. Buy-or-make decision sometimes is hard to make unless you really dig into the long-term cost and effective analysis.
Cost analysis is the first thing you need to consider. Just lay down all possible costs, including labor, employee’s benefits, program maintenance cost, etc.. You will see the overall cost of in-house making can be easily achieved 120K mark (4 employees, average 60K annual salary each, and the 6-month development time)
The second thing you may want to consider is turnover time. To develop a decent program, you need to first prepare a development requirement list and then have the IT engineers to do the coding and test the final product. Normally it needs 6-9 months to develop an in-house program and get the program up and working to standard.
The third thing is the on-going program maintenance, which is normally ignored by many managers. As your business evolved and your needs changed, the program needs to be constantly modified to cope with these changes. And therefore, you need to allocate IT professionals to work on the program continuously. Besides the high development cost, maintaining such as workforce sometimes is impossible due to IT department’s busy workload and the priority conflicts between different projects.
The fourth thing to be considered is the quality of the program. No doubt, the in-house program can be fully customized. However, the in-house program is developed based on the requirements that are prepared internally. Such inbred program can only reflect your existing processes, and the hidden flaws will be built into the software package. A standard off-the-shelf program is developed by IT professionals and management professionals who are dedicated to business improvements with the benchmarks from various successful companies and cross over the different industries. And therefore, the off-the-shelf program sometimes is more advanced and streamlined. Such program can not only help you improve your current processes but also discover hidden system issues.
After all, the button line is – if you have sufficient IT resources and money to spend, you may consider in-house development. Otherwise, buying an off-the-shelf program is more cost-effective in long-term. This conclusion has been proven by many of our customers.
What kind of software programs do I need?
Normally, there are three types of programs that are on the market.
- Web-based Programs – Most of the programs available on the market today are still using outdated ASP technology. Very few companies have started using the more advanced ASP.net technology, which QIT currently employs. ASP.net is the latest technology provided by Microsoft. We will further explain the benefits of this technology later in this article.QIT strongly advocates adopting ASP.net technology for web-based CAPA programs, and all of our web-based programs are developed based on ASP.net C# – the latest coding language from Microsoft.
- Client Server Solutions – The old-fashioned type of technology that was incepted about 20 years ago. Normally, software suppliers call it a desktop solution or workgroup solution. These types of solutions are using front-end forms that were developed by MS Access or Visual Basic, and use MS Access database or SQL server as the backend database.
- QIT’s desktop solutions are using MS Access for front end while using MS Access 2003 or SQL 2000 server as the backend database based on the customer’s requirements.
- Single File Solutions – These types of solutions are normally developed based on MS Access for single user use only. However, some of the software providers will advise user’s to store the program file on a network drive to achieve a network solution. This kind of configuration can easily cause file collapses, system crashing and along with the many security concerns. QIT strongly oppose deploying this type of solution to our clients.
The following is a quick reference chart for the web-based solution and the desktop solution
QIT’s answer: Yes, for 4 main reasons.
Web-based solutions are the current trend. Many of our clients have told us that they needed to implement a web solution to keep pace with some of the larger companies… corporations such as GM and Dolphin are currently doing so. Do not wait for your competition, and especially your clients, to force you to incorporate a web-based system. Do it now and be ahead of the competition!
Web-solutions are powerful tools that will help you build a unified workflow and communications process. It will consolidate data throughout your organization into one database whether you have offices in a single location, around the nation or worldwide. We especially recommend a web solution for those companies who have multiple locations and need to deal with supplier SCAR’s.
More cost-effective and less per-user-cost. While most people are intimidated by the higher prices provided by other software companies (Even though the software provider will only provide you an outdated ASP solution.). We here at QIT provide three different versions of web solutions designed to fit a company’s size and the budget. Our web-based programs start out as low as $5800 with unlimited users licenses- a low price that any company can afford.
Even companies that have a single location/office/facility would benefit from QIT’s web solutions. Interestingly, in recent feedback from our clients, we have noticed that even those users are using the web solution only for single locations, with QIT’s guidance, they are benefiting from the simplicity and analytical capability of our web solutions.
From technologies point of view, as with our experience in today’s marketing, most software providers are using outdated ASP technology for their programs, and few have started using ASP.net technology.
Compared to the older ASP technology, ASP.net technology has the following advantages:
- Strengthened Security – The major reason that more and more banks, online traders and online stores are switching to ASP.net technology.
- Higher Scalability – Server to server communications have been greatly enhanced making it possible to scale an application over several servers.
- Compiled Code for greatly increased performance.
- Easy Deployment – No more server restarts to deploy or replace compiled codes.
For a corrective action system that can be used for many years in a worldwide environment and to save on cost, we here at QIT strongly recommend ASP.net solutions for all of our clients.
From a developmental point of view, while benchmarking our systems, we have found that most of the so-called web-based programs are not qualified as web-based programs because they fail to take advantage of or harness the power of the current web technologies. Here, we will share a few of our testing results:
- Some programs are just simply converting their old desktop designs to a web solution. These programs look, feel and work like desktop solutions and are not designed to handle high traffic website.
- The workflow and program functions (e.g. submit, save, delete, copy, etc.) in these programs are still arranged in the desktop formats that will easily cause confusions by its users and trigger unexpected actions that can result in serious system breakdowns and data loss.
True web-based programs, like QIT’s web solutions, are completely redesigned allowing workflow and data flow to fully encompass the latest web technologies. As a result, while viewing the web pages on our program, our clients are experiencing a simplified, user-friendly interface along with streamlined system flow.
It really depends on the functions/modules you need and the number of users.
If you only need CAPA for internal corrective action management, you may consider the plans for CAPA only users
If you need CAPA and SCAR for supplier corrective action management, you can select the CAPA and SCAR option. Since each supplier needs an account, you may need 20 or more user accounts. Please contact us email@example.com we will provide a quote based on your situation.
If you need more functions and modules e.g. Inspection, Audit, Nonconformance, Complaints, Document, Training and etc., please contact us firstname.lastname@example.org we will provide a quote based on your situation.
Send your questions and comments to email@example.com or, it’s as easy as picking up the phone and calling 1-877-208-7888 (Toll Free) and speaking to one of QIT’s experienced representatives. You will experience a “No Pressure” environment while receiving all the facts about the advantages of using QIT’s unmatched services. Call or e-mail us today!!
You can also register on-line and try our fully functional demo programs. Try it and see the benefits for yourself.