FDM4 offers software and business management solutions for distributors and manufacturers in various industries, including integrated ERP, warehouse management, e-commerce, and CRM solutions. The company’s ERP integrates many functions within client organizations, including forecasting and procurement, inventory, order processing, allocations, freight calculations and accounting.
In business for over 35 years, FDM4 has seen numerous changes. Keeping up with technology to best serve its broad clientele has been challenging, to say the least.
Fortunately, they’ve been using Progress® OpenEdge® for more than 20 years. “Progress has grown with us along the way as we’ve transformed with new, modern technologies to serve customers in today’s data-driven world,” said Mike Cutsey, President, FDM4.
“We have always tried to keep pace with changing technology,” said Carl Brewer, Chief Operating Officer, FDM4. “We look at technology as a race with no finish line, and to us, modernization isn’t a one-time project; it’s an ongoing commitment.”
After starting with its ERP, FDM4 developed a B2B e-commerce solution, then added a Graphical User Interface (GUI) about five years later, using .NET and C# for the warehousing and CRM systems. “We were going to add .Net to the ERP, as well, but then we put on the breaks,” said Mike Cutsey, President, FDM4. “It still didn’t look new or modern, and we knew that a browser-based frontend was necessary to remain competitive.”
FDM4 customers serve a younger audience with a strong fashion sense, and they expect aesthetically pleasing, high-performing user experience. “Our customers don’t want to deal with monolithic solutions and processes with old GUI screens—they just don’t think or work that way,” Cutsey added.
But moving to a browser-based interface would be challenging. First off, FDM4’s customers needed to upgrade to OpenEdge 11.6 to take advantage of new features, and to stay compliant with new security requirements. Performance and data integration were also critical considerations, as was optimizing user experience.