New technology, new opportunities
PPMA replaced their core member directory with Dynamics 365. This provided opportunity for a range of benefits – particularly if member data could made available to broader range of end users.
PPMA (Processing and Packaging Machinery Association) is the UK’s trade association for suppliers of processing and packaging machinery to both the domestic and overseas market.
"Recursyv’s sync has really helped our project. The team have been really supportive as our requirements have evolved and we’ve extended the scope of the sync as our data quality has improved.” - Rob Brown, PPMA IT Manager
PPMA’s member directory is the beating heart of the organisation. An up-to-date and accessible member directory is at the core of providing value to members. The directory enables searching for members including a feature called Machinery Finder, where members are looking for specific packaging machinery.
New opportunities, new challenges
As part of ongoing digital transformation, PPMA replaced the platform supporting their member directory with a modern CRM – Microsoft Dynamics 365. This created opportunities for giving better value to members by making it easier for prospective customers to access member information.
PPMA introduced a mobile app containing the member directory.
Prospective customers of PPMA members can use the mobile app to search for PPMA members who may offer the relevant machinery.
As part of the change programme, PPMA also embarked on replacing their website. The site is an important channel for members to manage their own membership data. The old website had been in use for some years and keeping it synced with the member directory required a manual data sync every few days.
Like the mobile app, the website – delivered on the Preside platform - is also a channel for prospective customers of PPMA members to search for potential suppliers.
So many systems – how to keep the data in sync?
The new world contains a number of different systems: Dynamics, the mobile app and the website. PPMA needed to ensure that data was reliably synced between these systems on an ongoing basis.
PPMA’s criteria for solving the data sync problem were:
- Data should sync regularly with no need for manual intervention
- PPMA should not need to deploy additional IT infrastructure to enable the sync
- There should be flexibility to easily change the sync as business needs change
- Ideally the same technology could be used to sync all different systems as this would be easier for PPMA to manage over time
PPMA chose Seamless to sync data
Recursyv’s Seamless service is an application integration service that makes it easy to connect different software. Recursyv worked with PPMA to specify and deploy the two syncs as part of the broader change projects.
- Seamless is syncing member information between the website and Dynamics. Updates made by PPMA personnel (on Dynamics) or by members (on the website) are synced back and forth.
- Seamless is syncing the member directory information from Dynamics to the mobile app.
The Seamless service is highly configurable and different sync frequencies have been set-up to meet different aspects of the requirement. As Seamless is a wholly cloud delivered service, there is no need for further infrastructure.
Seamless is supported by Recursyv’s ongoing proactive monitoring which identifies any potential issues and manages these accordingly.
Making the most of the member directory
The use of Seamless to keep data in sync has allowed PPMA to build on the introduction of Dynamics. PPMA have improved self-service options to members via the new website. Additionally, prospective customers of members have new ways to seek out PPMA members both on the website and using the mobile app.
On a day-to-day basis, Seamless is keeping the PPMA’s member directory in sync.