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Silverlake :: Forms
AS/400 printing has traditionally meant simple lines of text on report or pre-printed forms. More and more, this approach is not meeting the output requirements of iSeries based organisations. These businesses need, for lack of a better term, "electronic documents" - online files that include text, application data, images, graphics, forms, and bar codes and that can be printed on demand.

Electronic documents use images, graphics, and selected fonts to present their message more clearly. Documents make a statement about the organization that creates them, and, in many cases, they are the only communication a customer receives from a business. Electronic documents help ensure your business makes a favourable impression.

You can change the flow of information and introduce new efficiencies with electronic documents. For example, you can bar code critical information, which can then be scanned instead of entered by hand at your warehouse or customer location. Electronic documents reduce printing costs - plain paper is far less expensive than pre-printed forms. Gone is the laborious task of changing and aligning pre-printed stock and leftover obsolete forms. And, with electronic documents, you can change the content instantly in response to market needs.

Consider, too, that with traditional pre-printed documents, only a document's application data is actually in the system. However, anyone in the company can view, fax, index, archive, retrieve, or reprint an electronic document exactly as it was produced. Documents can blend application data with scanned information (checks, patient records, proof-of-receipt signatures).

Web technology has also had a major impact on forms adding yet another dimension to output and input. Although HTML is well know for publishing information, it is XML (Extensible Mark-up Language) that provides the interface, or middleware that enables you to represent live data within a structured web page. Through XML you can create electronic forms that can be presented to a browser for the purpose of viewing, updating or entering new information, providing an extremely pervasive solution to accessing your information. One of the other major benefits of XML is that it is platform independent, providing the capability to build a single view of data from any number of databases residing on different platform types.

Forms are no longer limited to simply replacing pre-printed stationary, they can validate data entry, enforce business rules and work practices and in most cases provide substantial return on investment relatively quickly. Silverlake has worked extensively in this area and as with all solutions we first seek to define the requirement. We then go on to design the solution and insure the infrastructure will support that solution. The project is then implemented and support provided for 20 days after implementation has been completed.

deliverables.jpg benefits.jpg
  • Requirement researched, defined, agreed and documented
  • Solution researched defined, agreed and documented
  • Infrastructure reviewed and validated
  • Implementation
  • Project management
  • 20 days post implementation support
  • Improved information presentation and consistency
  • Increased flexibility
  • WYSIWYG technology
  • Very fast development possible by end users
  • Additional technology such as AFP or IPDS not always necessary
  • All required components (excluding development tools) stored on the iSeries
  • Substantial savings possible for customers using third party application such as JDE, JDA, BPCS etc. Because end users can create their own forms for printing, reporting, or data entry without incurring an application charge
  • Improved information validation possible
  • Improved information flow possible
  • Improved workflow possible
  • Operating costs can be greatly reduced
  • Business processes become much more efficient and effective

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