TMW Systems invests more than 250,000 hours in 2009

TMW Systems announced that in 2009 the company invested more than 250,000 hours in software development across TMW’s product families.

“With the acquisition of Innovative Computing Corporation last December, TMW Systems now has 45 percent of its employees engaged in software development activities,” says David W. Wangler, president and chief executive officer of TMW Systems. “Despite the challenging economic environment of 2009, we continued to invest in R&D across all of our product lines and we are proud of the significant number of new enhancements brought to market for our customers in the past year.”

In June, TMW released TruckMate 2009, a milestone representing the product’s move to a rolling release process and a dramatically enhanced multi-company capability. Additional market-driven features included a new data capture solution for handheld mobile devices, enhancements to reporting and Command Center KPI dashboards, streamlined intermodal workflows and improved integrations to TMT Fleet Maintenance, IDSC ExpertFuel and Carrier 411; along with multiple freight boards and mobile communications devices.

TMW also worked with IBM to perform a series of benchmarking tests that simulated up to 2,000 concurrent users.

TMW’s Optimization group launched IDSC MatchAdvice 6.0 last year, which includes an ad-hoc optimizer for user-selected sets and a shift scheduling optimizer appropriate for private fleets and petroleum haulers. The group also introduced an entirely new offering, TMW Freight Analyst.

“Freight Analyst is yield optimization made simple. At a glance, you can see what lanes and customers are the best contributors to your profitability, and which lanes demand attention,” said Mike August, VP and GM for TMW Optimization software.

For the IBM i platform, TMW says it is creating applications that work across multiple products, including TL2000, Innovative IES and TMT Fleet Maintenance for IBM i. The DAWG for IBM i, an RPG native version of TMW’s popular exception alerting program, was released in 2009 for TL2000 and TMT products and will be available for Innovative in 2010.

TMW also engaged IBM in a pilot project last year to explore modernization strategies for all of its IBM platform products. TL2000 development released version 8.1 of the product in 2009 and transitioned to a rolling release process for the software moving forward. Rolling release capability, which is also offered by other TMW product lines, will smooth the version upgrade process for TL2000 users and improve their access to new features by permitting more frequent product releases that are far less disruptive to implement.

Innovative IES, the flagship enterprise transportation software product from the former Innovative Computing Corporation, saw numerous improvements through the development of Release 9 last year. Available for beta testing with selected customers in the first quarter of 2010, R9 represents another milestone as the code base was fully converted from RPG III to IBM’s high-level “Integrated Language Environment (RPG IV-ILE).”

The conversion will improve developer productivity, speeding the release of future enhancements while benefiting system resource utilization, the company says. New functionality was also added in Accounts Payable, Customer Service and Dispatch, Detention Tracking, FlexEDI, Hours of Service, Logistics Management, Mobile Communications, Rating, User-defined Fields, Operations Reports and more. Modules that are now part of the R9 version include: IES AccuRate, IES Aware, IES Snap and Scriptor.

TMT Fleet Maintenance Software provided some unique new capability in 2009 with packaged web portal technologies integrated natively with its Windows offerings. The Vendor Information System (VIS) lets fleets bring their service vendors online to submit invoices and status reports, review vehicle repair histories and note PM or Work Pending items, reducing phone calls and paperwork, as well as data entry for the fleet personnel.

For heavy-duty repair centers using the TMT ServiceCenter offering and Fleets performing work on Owner Operated equipment, the Customer Information System (CIS), also released in 2009, provides a secure customer service portal with built-in conveniences for fleets outsourcing their maintenance operations. Work also began last year on a new browser-based version of the Mechanic Workstation, scheduled for release later in 2010.

TMWSuite version 2010 was introduced at the TransForum event last September. Notable new items included a large set of new brokerage capabilities along with a .NET customer relationship management system, known as CRM Right.

Greater power and configurability was added to TMWSuite’s Screen Designer functionality by allowing users to add embedded reporting capabilities to any screen for immediate insight into any aspect of their business. Also released was integration with SQL Reporting Services.

“With our embedded reporting and SQL Reporting Services integration, TMWSuite users now have unprecedented access to critical business information throughout the application,” noted Dave Mook, TMW Systems CTO/COO.

TMW Data Warehouse, also introduced at TransForum, is the next step in the evolution of the ResultsNow executive dashboard and reporting platform for both the TMWSuite and the TL2000 operations platforms, which offers business scalability and enterprise-ready report and analysis infrastructure for existing users of the product.

The introduction of the Fuel TMS system in 2009, based upon a combination of TMWSuite and IDSC technologies, brought closely integrated transportation management capabilities to the demanding world of petroleum marketers and bulk fuel carriers. Significant features included optimization for shift-based driver scheduling, a dedicated Fuel Dispatch application, full-featured Inventory Services tools for automated replenishment and best price bulk fuel sourcing.