14th ERP meetings

Another “ERP meetings” summit has ended (erpsusreti.rs). This year our host was hotel “Fontana” in Vrnjačka Banja, and from May 23 to 25 we were socializing, exchanging experiences and enjoying the natural beauties of this part of Serbia. We gathered between 150 and 160 participants from 50 companies, and the share of users of the UPIS ERP solution was higher than at the previous gatherings, which is especially pleasing to us. Next year IIB will be celebrating 30 years of existence, we plan a big summit and hope that the number of participants will climb to 200. Some would say that this is an ambitious goal, but when people come once, they are often returning, so we think that our aim is not unrealistic at all.

The gathering started on 23.05. in the afternoon, and after dinner, we held the IIB quiz. The questions were more difficult than last year, but the participants proved to be very skilled. Teams had original names: “Aunt from Canada”, “MLJM”, “Youth” and “Aurus”. “Aunt from Canada” was a convincing winner, and Irena Rushnov Mendas has been in the winning team for two years now.

On Friday morning, after breakfast, a welcome and cocktail reception started. We opened the meeting, and the introductory lecture was held by Miloš Bošnjak and Radovan Ostojić. Miloš recalled plans for the future, and Radovan introduced modern production management (MES) solutions. This has caused great interest, and we promised participants that we will place the presentations on the ERP website at the beginning of next week. After them, Miodrag Ranisavljević appeared with a story about what digital transformation is and what is not. Then, the maestral Marko Stojanović got us all awakened and, in a humorous way, he presented the myth of digitalization through the “Digital Fairy Tale”. He selected several participants who became actors and portrayed the digital she-dragon, princess, horse and a hero. The audience waved their hands and played the role of “cloud”. The aim of this entertaining performance was to make it clear to the audience that digital transformation should not be something that is taken by a priori approach, just because it is “trendy”, but that it should bring measurable effects that will increase productivity according with human application of new technologies . After a short break, Miloš Bošnjak repeated the presentation from this year’s DATUM conference, entitled: “Sustainable Hybridization in the Age of Digital Transformation”, pointing to the importance of a carefully measured hybrid information systems. Further he talked about news regarding UPIS ERP and UPIS.MES production planning and management solutions. After a coffee break, Zoran Sarafijanović and Mirko Smolić showed us how to perform a “drill-down” report in order to reach conclusions that can make management decision making easier. Zoran started the lecture emphasizing the importance of the function of finance and its role in modern companies, and further, on the example of a fictitious retailer, showed how to make conclusions by analysing the sales, number of byer’s visits, locations, retail objects, competitors … Presentation followed by appropriate examples from the UPIS ERP, using the Power Pivot and Power BI reports. Mirko Smolić demonstrated the functionality of advanced business intelligence systems based on statistical analysis, i.e. what is at least partially what business intelligence systems should be. We met the methods of market basket analysis and clustering, whose results led us to conclusions that would not come by simply ‘observing’ the data. These conclusions would enable us to make decisions that are based not only on the feeling, experience and historical data, but on statistically based proactive decisions affecting future business. Magdalena Bogdanović, director of the company Docloop, held the final presentation at the ERP meetings. She introduced the participants to the concept of eBill, and she spoke further about the doubts that exist regarding this issue, contemporary approaches to generating and saving electronic bills, as well as the trends that are coming in this area which should greatly facilitate business. After the lecture and lunch, a road trip to Goč mountain followed, and then a gala dinner. We distributed a large number of gifts in the lottery and kept socializing, along with wine and song, party lasted until late into the night.

On the last day of the ERP meetings we did not anticipate formal activities, but only a road trip to the monastery Žiča. Although in media they announced the rain during the entire duration of the event, only a good weather accompanied us, so many of us extended their stay in Vrnjačka Banja for another day. These ERP meetings, 14th in a row, will be remembered as a successful gathering, and we hope that next year will be even better. Before organizing the next meeting, we will conduct a short survey among the participants in order to choose even better lecturers and prepare more interesting contents. See you at the 15th ERP summit!