Epica Solutions (Epica) provides supply management and consulting services and specialisation in the provision of item cataloguing (item data information) and Nato codification services.
Epica primarily focuses on the information data for clients’ spares and equipment or assets; accurate quality data that is an essential must for successful operations, whether it is in defence, mining, government services or manufacturing. Knowledge is power, an equation that can only be satisfied by data integrity to provide total asset visibility and protect high cost EAM/ERP software system investments.
The cataloguing process is the provision of an item’s commercial description, which comprises only relevant or essential data, enough to allow a user to readily identify, select and acquire the correct item. The data must support the functionality of the materials management system and the organisation’s ongoing operations.
Data management and inventory organisation solutions
Epica believes data management brings significant benefits and savings to a client company with good quality data sets. It provides total asset visibility, allows accurate inventory management, aggregates similar items for contractual consideration, improves communication of data and reduces obsolete or redundant items.
It allows organisations that embrace quality data to operate in a competitive environment with knowledge and confidence, and avoids them contributing to a loss of productivity. It has been estimated that more than $600bn in productivity losses a year occur in the US alone (TWDI statistic) due to poor quality data. Other countries are not immune to these types of losses.
No enterprise asset management (EAM) or enterprise resource planning (ERP) system, no matter how smart, fixes the quality or integrity of its data. Quality data protects an organisation’s hefty EAM / ERP investment as the data should be tailored to the functionality of the host system, enhancing the vital productivity gains expected.
This allows the benefits and savings to accrue each year with only a one-time up-front investment. Savings can be anywhere from 10% to 15% of an organisation’s annual inventory costs. One mining client in a remote location was able to reduce its emergency freight bill by $13m annually because it now stocks the correct items, which is not a bad return for a one-time cost of less than $300,000. This was in addition to direct savings in its inventory holdings.
Nato codification services
Epica Solutions has been providing direct Nato codification support to the National Codification Bureau (NCB) at Defence Plaza, Melbourne, Australia, for the past seven years. This support has involved supplying a number of personnel to support the NCB across all areas of their business, including the generation of new codification records, amendments to existing codification records, military integrated logistic information system (MILIS) population, bulk file amendments, Nato commercial and government entity (NCAGE) generation and liaison with all stake holders.
In addition to supporting the Australian NCB Epica has also provided the following Nato codification support activities:
- Support to Australian prime contractors in the preparation of codification data packs to be forwarded onto the NCB to enable the codification process to be carried out on time and to contract requirements
- Support to Systems Program offices in the preparation of codification data packs and the population of bespoke software as mandated by the Commonwealth of Australia to be forwarded onto the NCB to enable the codification process to be carried out on time and to contract requirements
- Support to the South African NCB providing subject matter experts to review their entire Nato codification database reporting on its quality in line with Nato standards, 3.5-year project completed on April 2011
Data quality management resources and accreditation
Epica is an accredited provider of data quality management under ISO 8000:110 2009, and has developed its own customised software applications to process client’s data.
The company is recognised by a letter of recognition by the ADF for the supply of its services and was previously recognised under the old defence recognised supplier scheme (DRSS).
Data management and processing software
Epica utilises a number of in-house developed bespoke electronic tools. The tools are modules of the Epica Workbench software application, which manages the cataloguing processes through the restructuring of the data to the client’s requirements by emulating the host system where the data will be exported.
The Epica Workbench also allows for global data edits and importantly inbuilt audit functions to ensure data quality. All data is processed in Australia, no data is processed overseas, except when Epica personnel worked in Africa where the tools were used to assist in the cross checking of Nato codification data and bring files together for processing.
The company has developed its own cataloguing standards with the basic aims of simplification and cost-effectiveness. The Epica standards are readily integrated with all other recognised catalogue standards or catalogue classifications such as Nato, eOTD, UNSPSC, ASIC and ecl@ss.
Epica solutions also has a proven track record in the cataloguing of client’s data to these recognised standards and other applicable requirements.