Its January 2015: Are you curious ? “what are people looking for from their website and on line presence this year”


Please take a moment to answer this poll BUT remember to flag or bookmark this post so U can come back and check to see what other people just like you are thinking….

 

(To save your results press the blue button under the poll)

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Moodle test site – Amazon instance (Integrating to Coresoft)


There is growing interest in our customer communities in creating basic integration between Moodle and Coresoft applications. Coresoft being a stable Training administration and Moodle being an established LMS, there is no need for either package to duplicate the capabilities of the other, but to provide integration between these systems to allow students to enroll through the Corporate website (which is a Coresoft application), and in turn create/enable a Moodle account with the course modules that they have purchased. Then when the student completes any training unit the results are uploaded into Coresoft to be recorded against their training history.

Once recorded, the organization can produce the required RTO reports for upload to the government website.

Technically this is a simple matter using the Moodle API to:

A) Link with Moodle, so when a person registers for a course through our software, web service commands are sent to Moodle to perform functions such as:

  • Login and provide Moodle session token
  • Add new user, set user name, profile and password
  • Register the new person to a course or series of courses
  • Remove person from course
  • Remove user
  • Change user details or password

B) Run a process (on our machine) that sends command/commands to Moodle that extracts data (as JSON) of all the users that have completed a course or course component, along with their results.

In practice however there is a little more to this than first envisaged.

After the set up of a standard Moodle environment on an TEST Amazon instance at http://moodle01.coresoftcloud.biz/ we soon discovered that the Moodle LMS has a number of other features that the RTO is expecting to leverage including its Social Media facilities to allow students to network with piers and mentors, image and document sharing and ability to update their profile and password. Needless to say this then puts further requirements into the mix for Coresoft to allow students to make these changes in Moodle and Coresoft to load any change back into itself and manage timing conflicts, so the two platforms work seamlessly together.

SOLUTION

The solution is to design a web service to receive updates from Moodle (which is PHP open source application) and extend specific tables in the Moodle database, to record time stamp information to send / receive with updates.

Question

What other moodle features would you like to see linked to your Back office systems?

Customer Relationship Management – Maturity Model


Research findings from the Ventana group on its customer relationship maturity model, compared 150 companies from a cross section of industries comparing Customer Relationship as a core organizational competency and introducing a model than can form a basis to benchmark and track performance.

CRMMaturity_Fig1_1

Whilst 100% of respondents considered themselves to be customer focused, the findings showed 44% of the respondents had a more tactical approach to CRM, and over 50% had started to adopt more innovative processes people and technologies to help them build better customer relationships. It showed that 12% could be seen as innovative as they use the latest techniques, people, processes and technologies and have trained and incentivized their employees to use these.

The link (Customer Relationship Maturity Research findings) contains a snapshot of “takeaway” issues from the survey along with a link to the webinar that presented the findings.

Amazon monthly costs rising?


If your new to Amazon and are trying to understand your rising monthly costs, there are a few things you can check that could be consuming your available budget.

  • When you create a new Instance, are you selecting the option to delete volumes on termination?
    (if not the unused volumes will be adding to monthly charges and the longer you leave it to clean up the more difficult the task becomes to manage)
  • When deleting instances are you removing unused volumes?
  • When instances will not be needed for a period of time, you can create an AMI image and delete the instance. (The AMI uses a lower cost Snapshot to store your Instance and its Volumes, and is more cost effective for long term use)
  • When deleting an AMI are you then removing the associated Snapshots
  • When creating small test Instances, use Magnetic type volumes as it is cheaper, and you wont need the speed of the configurable IOPS volumes (General type Volumes) for test systems
  • Shut instances when not in use (No cost for running the instance, just cost of the Volumes when instance stopped)
  • If your using a higher powered processor to manage the load in peak period, you should consider splitting this into a smaller instance , that uses Auto Scaling to start up larger more powerful instances during peak load periods.
  • If your ERP system uses Progress OpenEdge or a SQL database with TCP port connections between the database and Clients, the databases that require permanent connection will need to be available and served on the smaller (low powered) machine and connected using TCP port when each of the more powerful machines Auto scale, so you will need to engage a consultant to help you with that part so as to avoid exposing your data to unauthorized access.

Project Kick start phase – BPR – Finance and Administration – Discovery Workshop


Project initiation steps for Finance and Admin involve preliminary “getting to know you sessions”, followed by a pre BPR “Discovery workshops”, where the stakeholders (who may not of seen the software since the original demo’s) get another chance to familiarize themselves with the software, and the vendor goes through a preliminary check list of items that will be used to construct a configuration profile for the software and to select specific test cases and key processes that will be included in forthcoming BPR sessions.

Video samples Comments
Finance – Day 1 Introductions, demos and scope review
Finance – Day 2 BPR checklist for configuration / setup and BPR agenda
Finance – Day 3 Identification and scope of reform in transaction based processes
Finance – Day 4 Project accounting, Activity based accounting, Government projects, funding

Note: Similar workshops are conducted for Membership, Professional services, Events, Training, Web and Marketing operations.

Related samples

Why the boss needs an iPad


Over the last few weeks I have been struggling with the notion of getting and iPad. The practical person says, it’s just another toy. The finance person says where is the justification. The technologist says your a software company and need to understand it.

But the practical person won with the idea that I just can’t keep up with the organizations need for useful content for website, news, blogs, Twitter, linked in, facebook, you name it we use it all.

I justified it based on the notion that I can create content where and when I the think of it.

And guess what, over the last 3 days of travel I have managed to write in airplanes, airport terminals, waiting rooms and more.

I am pleased to say my hunch that iPad would improve my content productivity is actually correct.

You will never guess where I am now as I create this blog…..

Under the covers waiting for my 2 year old to finally fall asleep so I can go down the dinner…

We have all been there I suspect….