Operational Excellence around the Clock

Every day, your business is enabled by the applications that your enterprise is operating, affecting all areas of your business. These applications represent a significant investment that need constant care and effort to ensure that they keep delivering their added value to the business. This responsibility is often seen as an extension to the project work and is taken care by the same team of experts that built the solution.

A major reason to deploy a team who combines not only the support of the application but also the delivery of new projects, is that every JD Edwards application is configured in a different way and in many cases there are a lot of customizations and interfaces that need to be taken into account. There are thousands of processing options in JD Edwards which influence the behaviour of the objects, hence business processes are configured in very different ways. Logic behind a business process that seems simple at the surface but can be very complex because of the business rules and processing options set in the application.

On the technical side, the support responsibility includes the design of hardware and network architecture, virtualization, high availability, disaster recovery, the optimization of performance, … The challenge is to find the right balance between providing a stable and reliable environment and at the same time making sure that the right versions and technologies are deployed.

Supporting the application not only means that the application keeps working reliable, but also that bugs are identified, analysed and solved. Furthermore, every business is confronted with ongoing adjustments and needs in its environment which often requires minor changes to the solution that should be provided quickly. Examples include functional enhancements, interfaces, data conversions and reports. Customizing your ERP system is necessary when the core functionality is not able to fully satisfy your business needs.

Challenges
The challenges in supporting your applications require staff that has expert level expertise and is service minded, while keeping their focus on projects that can be business critical, time driven, or both. Recruiting, training and managing this team to support your business applications is a concern that requires ongoing care and energy.

A typical cause for concern is finding the balance between providing support to your business and implementing new initiatives. As a result your staff needs to make choices that will put either support or projects at a disadvantage.

Today cloud applications define the user expectations for reliability, availability and performance. Achieving a comparable level of service is field of expertise all on its own, requiring expertise, skills, teams and tools that are dedicated and specialised.

Our Offering
Quistor Managed Services is the leading provider of JD Edwards technical and functional support services in Europe. We are able to deliver 24/7 support to make sure our clients can focus on their core business processes. Our support services help you maintain, monitor, improve and innovate your JD Edwards environment.

To ensure our quality we have highly skilled and trained consultants that work dedicated on our support activities in pre-assigned client teams. In this way we guarantee all areas of support are covered and well known with our consultants as agreed in the Service Level Agreements.

In order to deliver a comprehensive support offering, Quistor Managed Services has organised its expertise in five centres of expertise: functional support, technical support, development, core technology and database technology.

Technical Support

Regularly checking all aspects of the environment is one of the areas where Quistor excels. We have a unique methodology where we combine standard tools and technology with custom built monitoring logic along with common sense and human analysis.

Our monitoring builds on the monitoring tools of SolarWinds. We use the standard tools for Server & Application Monitoring , enhanced with our own proprietary Quistor templates. These templates are based on our in-depth JD Edwards knowledge and monitoring expertise.

Our monitoring methodology is unique because it includes performance monitoring. We have created logic that checks if job queue usage is optimal (less waiting jobs), jobs are not running for too long, SQL queries submitted by interactive JD Edwards programs are not causing database performance issues.

The monitoring may include of the following services:

  • JD Edwards application monitoring: Application kernels, Job Queue progress, Print Queue, Long running jobs, JDE congestion, Subsystem monitoring and JDE Attachments.
  • Server Monitoring: kernels, loggings, system components, messages and backups.
  • OS Monitoring: OS patches management & monitoring, monitoring of the system logs, Java virtual machine monitoring and cluster monitoring.
  • Database monitoring: disk space monitoring, instance checking, alert log monitoring, archive and clean alert log, check blocking processes, processes monitoring, sessions monitoring, listener Monitoring, open cursor monitoring, backup monitoring, log switch monitoring, table space monitoring, data guard monitoring, long processes monitoring, database job monitoring & availability/performance monitoring

Other services that are offered are:

  • High Availability Services: Typically, our high availability service may include the following services: Database replication for DR, full / Incremental backups, Backup/Restore test and Failover tests.
  • Base System Performance Tuning: This service includes tasks such as regular purges to ensure that your disc space is optimized, regular system restarts & database indexing in order to boost system performance.
  • Reporting: The most visible deliverable for SLA Governance is the Monthly Report that provides detailed information over the previous month, offering statistics on many areas, providing trends highlighting potential future issues and an overview of issues that require special attention.
  • Enhancements: Because of new JD Edwards releases (both technical & functional), new business requirements, or as a result of our continuous monitoring, Quistor can together with you agree to implement new functional and/or technical improvements to further enhance JD Edwards system performance & fit.

Typically our technical support contracts offer 24/7 coverage, with SLA’s appropriate to each time frame.

As a service organization, Quistor is ISAE 3402 certified meaning we have been widely recognized that the policies, practices and procedures we use are based on a consistent quality in the products and services we provide to our customers. 

Functional Support

Typically our functional support contracts offer coverage for business hours or extended business hours, with SLA’s appropriate to each time frame.

Where it comes to functional support, this is significantly different than technical support. Every JD Edwards application is configured in a different way, plus in many cases there are lot of customizations and interfaces that need to be taken into account. Imagine there are thousands of processing options in JD Edwards which influence the behaviour of the applications, hence business processes are configured in very different ways. Logic behind a business process that seems simple at the surface but can be very complex because of the business rules and processing options set.

Hence, when customers ask Quistor to take over their functional support, it is very important to agree upon a proper knowledge transfer period and to set mutual expectations.

We typically identify the following phases in our functional support takeover methodology:

  • Phase 1: Functional Support – Knowledge build
  • Phase 2: Functional Support – Transition mode
  • Phase 3: Functional support according to agreed SLA

 

Phase 1: Functional Support – Knowledge build During this phase, we concentrate on building up proper knowledge on how the JD Edwards configuration has been set. Typically, this entails studying system configuration guides, process documentation guides, training materials and/or end user documentation. On top of that it is critical to involve subject matter experts, the key users, especially in case when documentation is missing or is incomplete. In case of complex customizations and/or configurations, we highly recommend to setup knowledge transfer sessions with the originally involved JD Edwards consultants.

The duration of the knowledge build phase depends very much on the complexity of the JD Edwards processes and the level of knowledge of your key user organization, availability of external consultants and the completeness of documentation.

Phase 2: Functional Support – Transition mode

 

During this phase we start providing functional support based on a T&M contract. During this phase, knowledge transfer is often still a key activity where it comes to customizations. We strive and aim to solve support calls within the agreed timeframe and priority levels. At the end of this phase, we can better estimate the exact workload, timeframe, complexity of incidents or changes in your environment. Our experience is that this phase takes between 3 to 6 months.
Phase 3: Functional support according to agreed SLA During this phase we can commence providing support for an agreed service window, scope, resolution time and fixed price. We mutually agree on the type of changes and requests that become part of the fixed fee contract.
Development

Customizing your ERP system is often necessary when the core functionality doesn’t satisfy your business needs. Our near shore remote development services result in substantial quality improvements and cost savings. Experienced software engineers design, build, test and document effective solutions without jeopardising future upgrades.

Our developers are operating in The Netherlands, The Czech Republic, Italy and Spain and have expert knowledge of multiple technologies, methodologies and application development frameworks such as Oracle JD Edwards toolset, BI Publisher, Oracle Application Development Framework, Microsoft .NET and DSI Scripting.

Typically our remote development consultants can support you in a number of activities all on remote basis to save time and costs:

  • Development of new enhancements
  • Development of interfaces
  • Development of reports
  • Conversion support
  • Retrofitting
  • Bug fixing

 

In addition we have developed several productivity tools to run your environments more efficiently:

  • Copy version tool
  • Password reset tool
  • Interface workbench tool
Core Technology

Our services cover a wide range of technologies and services, from the most basic to the most complex.

  • Hardware architecture design (servers and storage), networks design or cloud environments design (pure cloud or hybrid).
  • Virtualization layers and operating systems, installation, configuration and performace
  • High availability environments and disaster recovery.
  • Systems consolidation in the cloud or in virtual environments on premise
  • And of course, all CNC related services to JD Edwards like installation and configuration of JD Edwards environments, tuning and performance improvements, JDE security at all levels, patching and upgrades, others systems integration (on premise or cloud).

In addition, the Core Technology team relies on a large number of tools in which they are specialized to perform all these tasks.

  • Q-Software Security
  • Packman
  • Password Reset Portal
  • OVM, VMware, Hyper-V

SOA / AIS 

Database Technology

At the core of your systems we support the underlying database that plays a crucial part in providing a reliable, fast and secure platform.

At Quistor we have a team of highly experienced people working for many years on both Oracle and SQL Server databases that we can offer with the following services:

  • Design and implement high availability solutions to our customers, by means of clustering, RAC, Dataguard, Logshipping, Replication etc.
  • Support high performance databases on our Quistor’s Exadata environment
  • Tackle all kinds of performance issues related to database requests and database configurations
  • Advise upon , implement and optimize database backup and restores
  • Implement archiving solutions using Essentio Archivist
  • Assure a SOX compliant security setup
  • Upgrade databases to the latest version and patch database to solve issues.

On top of the services mentioned above, our Database Technology team is specialized in JDE related requests like production data copies, validating and executing customer SQL requests, work with materialized views, work with auditing on JDE tables etc.

 

Want to know more about Quistor Managed Services? Please read the next articles and contact us for more information