Take Solutions delivers software by the slice

Long before the iPhone, Take provided apps to fill the gaps in ERP solutions

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There’s a lot of talk about apps today, especially in the consumer world. We’re all enamored of those lean pieces of functionality that let us address a specific need or process from anywhere.

While the app for the mobile phone might be new, Take Solutions, has been providing focused functionality for years. I first got to know the company at an Oracle World conference when it was known as ClearOrbit about a decade ago. Back then, Take touted its ability to string together pieces of best-of-breed functionality that might be missing from Oracle’s or SAP’s warehouse management solutions to complete a process. For certain end users, it was the best of both worlds: they stayed on their ERP platform while gaining the kind of best of breed functionality you would expect from RedPrairie, Manhattan or HighJump. Back then, I jokingly referred to it as a sort of software pizzeria where you could order your software by the slice.

“That’s not a bad analogy,” says Grant Woolf, Take’s vice president of strategy and business development. And while SAP and Oracle have improved their game, Take is still delivering software like Godfather’s Pizza. At the most recent Oracle World earlier this month, the company launched a dedicated enterprise mobility practice for Oracle E-Business suite customers. While the practice is new, Woolf says it’s really a formalization of the approach Take has taken to the market for years.

“The area where we work the most is compliance, such as serialization in the pharma space,” he says. “Our customers may need a solution to address a compliance issue faster than an ERP provider can respond. Compliance is our best friend.”

Today, the need for the portability and mobility of those solutions is also becoming Take’s best friend.

“A few years ago, we began to expand outside the four walls of the warehouse with a supply chain collaboration piece to connect trading partners to an inside the four walls solution,” Woolf says. “You have companies, for instance, that are outsourcing their distribution activities to a 3PL. They still want to access transactions, reporting, KPIs and workflows on their devices.”

Similarly, the company outsourcing its processes still wants to control those processes. In that model, the end user defines the IT solutions a 3PL will use to fulfill its processes; if it changes providers at the end of the contract, the entire solution is both mobile and portable. 

In the past, Woolf adds, Take put together examples of those solutions opportunistically. Now, they’ll have a framework for running the business. “We are still focused on plugging and filling the gaps in an ERP solution,” he says. “But now this is part of an enterprise mobility solution.” 


About the Author

Bob Trebilcock
Bob Trebilcock, editorial director, has covered materials handling, technology, logistics and supply chain topics for nearly 30 years. In addition to Supply Chain Management Review, he is also Executive Editor of Modern Materials Handling. A graduate of Bowling Green State University, Trebilcock lives in Keene, NH. He can be reached at 603-357-0484.

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