A small company based in Holycross, Co. Tipperary, is this week launching a specialised business computer program for Irish mushroom growers. Called IMPS, or the Independent Mushroom Producer’s System, it has taken one and a half years to develop. It provides mushroom producers with a system that computerises all their administration. The aim was to reduce the time needed for administration to 15 - 20 minutes a day. This has been realised. As a result, IMPS produces the pickers’ weekly earnings in 30 seconds, rather than the 1-1½ hours it can take to do by hand. IMPS will: 1.Manage mushroom sales: tracks all aspects of contract shipments; produces customer invoices & Statements; calculates weight of mushrooms produced and the average sale price; monitors mushroom quality 2.Manage purchase orders and deliveries: includes stringent controls to safeguard against payment of supplier invoices in error 3.Calculates weekly earnings of staff: can be used with a standard computerised pay roll system 4.Provides huge range of management statistics and report: too complex to work out on paper, these statistics, including full Profit & Loss Report on each production cycle, are available instantly, on demand IMPS has been used successfully by independent mushroom producers in Co. Tipperary for the past 4 - 5 months, and comes highly recommended. It is marketed as a complete package, with installation, training and support. RBA Systems, the company that created IMPS, specialises in developing bespoke computer programs for all types of small and medium sized businesses. IMPS is the first specialised system to be launched since setting up in Co. Tipperary.
BACKGROUND INFORMATION Consultant: Brendan Howling Has worked in the PC industry for over 20 years. Most of that time was spent working with very large companies that would typically be investing £1 - £3 million each year on information technology. For the past three years he has worked as a private business consultant, helping the smaller company meet the challenges of introducing PC technologies. Small companies cannot afford the £millions in investment, but need the benefits of these technologies just as much as, if not more than, their larger corporate cousins. How did you get involved with the mushroom industry? “I was asked by friends who had just started a mushroom business to help them with their new computer. Initially the idea was to set up a couple of simple productivity measures on their computer to help them cope with the time-consuming tasks like calculating pickers’ earnings.” “We did this, and it was successful, but it didn’t even scratch the surface of the administration problems they faced. We could speed up this job or that job, but the impact of the computer on the management of the business would be minimal. This was when I decided to develop a complete system for them.” “An independent mushroom producer should be able to run his whole business on a modern personal computer. It is certainly powerful enough. As well as automating all the administrative tasks of the business, the computer should be able to provide the producer with all the facts and figures he could ever need to make sound, business decisions, based on the facts.” “Corporations invest £millions in what are called ‘data warehouses’ to get precisely this: vital facts and figures. IMPS brings state-of-the-art data processing power to the local independent mushroom producer.” Further information: Brendan Howling Telephone: (0504) 43067