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Thread: Officemate

  1. #1
    Rising Star misstara007's Avatar
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    Question Officemate

    Hi all,

    We are looking to replace our office software (specifically for inventory only) - Does anyone have any feedback on Officemate? Thanks!

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    I've used it and several in the past for a four store inter-linked set up. It worked, but I ultimately shifted over to a smaller Optical inventory specific program called Flex Sys. Works well, uses electronic scanners, and inventory stickers. Makes great reports, and was significantly cheaper too!

    Frank Gimbel

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    Eyes eastward... Uilleann's Avatar
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    OfficeMate might be a bit cost prohibitive (to say nothing of grossly overpowered) for an inventory-only set-up. It is a comprehensive optometric practice management system. I would expect you can find a much smaller system for inventory alone for a lower cost with some looking. Apart from what others suggest here I wouldn't know of any.

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    Master OptiBoarder Striderswife's Avatar
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    My office uses OfficeMate, but we use the whole program including ExamWriter (EMR). We haven't upgraded to the newest version; from what I understand they're still working out the bugs. It works just fine for my inventory, though. I don't use all the features, but it's 1000 times better than the old system we had: none. ;)
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    OfficeMate user for 3 yrs. It is a good system if you are going to use it for a paperless office system. It's very powerful and requires a server/client network arrangement. If all you are going to use it for is inventory, I would look for an inventory-only system. It would be like buying a Ford F-Series Super Duty truck and using it only to do the weekly grocery haul.
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    The issue of Vision Care Product News that arrived just yesterday has a spotlight on of all things Inventory Management.

    Long time OfficeMate user. I like the comments above and could not agree more that it is super over-powered for your smaller office.
    It is clearly based on running a large complex multi-office system with an accountant.
    I sure wished they offered OfficeMate Lite!
    But since they don't you don;t have many other choices.
    The inventory management part works pretty well but be sure to add the barcode scanners.

  7. #7
    lens-o-matic bhess25's Avatar
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    I also used officemate for a long time and I agree, if your not using it all its way overpowered, although it is a great system for everything from exams, ordering, submitting billing, inventory, accounting, it does it all, but if your looking for just inventory it may be a bit much.
    equal opportunity offender!!

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    Officemate inventory system is not very good. We use it to the best of its ability but it makes handling inventory difficult. It has integration with Frames Data, which can be handy, if Frames Data has the frames you carry. It can't track your returns and when it comes time to do inventory it is cumbersome -, doesn't warn you of errors and it takes two people to do inventory. They ran into some release issues with OM 9.0,9.5 or what ever it is now and halted it because they ran into a lot of issues (not sure what they are). Once the new release is out, and they fix bugs, they are supossed to be upgrading their inventory module. Its reporting system lacks as well, if you're used to Quickbooks, then you will be disappointed by OM's reporting system. Its checkout process is pretty slow too. Basically, its great at replacing manilla pt folders, but when it comes to managing your office as a business it is weak. Keeping fingers crossed for next release, but expectations are low at this point. We shall see......

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    Master OptiBoarder AngeHamm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AustinEyewear View Post
    Officemate inventory system is not very good. We use it to the best of its ability but it makes handling inventory difficult. It has integration with Frames Data, which can be handy, if Frames Data has the frames you carry. It can't track your returns and when it comes time to do inventory it is cumbersome -, doesn't warn you of errors and it takes two people to do inventory. They ran into some release issues with OM 9.0,9.5 or what ever it is now and halted it because they ran into a lot of issues (not sure what they are). Once the new release is out, and they fix bugs, they are supossed to be upgrading their inventory module. Its reporting system lacks as well, if you're used to Quickbooks, then you will be disappointed by OM's reporting system. Its checkout process is pretty slow too. Basically, its great at replacing manilla pt folders, but when it comes to managing your office as a business it is weak. Keeping fingers crossed for next release, but expectations are low at this point. We shall see......
    OM's inventory system is appalling. The sheer number of tricks and workarounds we have had to develop in order to use it as an inventory system is ludicrous, and it STILL isn't accurate. Run screaming.
    I'm Andrew Hamm and I approve this message.

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    Eyes eastward... Uilleann's Avatar
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    Problems with OfficeMate and inventory usually stem from improper/incomplete training in my experience. We've run it in four different practices I've worked, and when it's done correctly, it is both extremely easy to maintain and accurate to audit. Inventory entry and reconciliation should be easily managed by a single individual, and with all but the largest items counts we were always done in a matter of a few hours. Obviously OfficeMate allows for a great deal of customization, which can be a blessing or a curse depending on the practice. Initial set-up is key, but it can be easily done. Again, however, as has been previously pointed out, OfficeMate will be much more program (and likely expense) if all you need is simple inventory management software.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Uilleann View Post
    Problems with OfficeMate and inventory usually stem from improper/incomplete training in my experience. We've run it in four different practices I've worked, and when it's done correctly, it is both extremely easy to maintain and accurate to audit. Inventory entry and reconciliation should be easily managed by a single individual, and with all but the largest items counts we were always done in a matter of a few hours.
    Hi Uilleann,

    Are you able to track frame returns to vendors using OM inventory? What are you doing for these? We have been unable to obtain instructions from OM on how to do this, I consider it a major hole in inventory management. At times, we can have 10000's of dollars on the back of UPS trucks waiting for credit and that is still in our inventory until credit received.

    Also, during inventory time, what are you doing when a frame was accidentally forgotten to be checked into inventory? (the human factor is always going to be an issue, but OM should help assist) Officemate does not warn you when you scan this frame, if you don't have a 2nd person eyeballing the screen, it will go unnoticed and take a long time to track down. OM should pop up a message that says frame not found or something, but as far as we have been able to discover, this is not possible. Have you discovered this problem and do you have a work around?

    Another problem we have with OM inventory is related to above. If we do notice that it did NOT warn us, there are thousands of frames to scan thru (we use FrameMate and only bring in frame we carry), when makes it super cumbersome to find the frame that was not scanned. Same problem goes when a frame can't be scanned because the UPC tag has been lost. Do you run into this?

    My other beef with OM inventory is that it does not allow for choice of UPC bar code type. It locks you into one time, which is not what we want to use. We want a very tiny bar code technology - there is a work around for this, but requires a lot of manual intervention.

    My beef with FrameMate, is that it does not have many of the frames we carry, so beware of that issue too if you are expecting FrameMate to make inventory easier, because it doesn't always do that. The last round of 400 frames we checked into inventory, 65% were not in FrameMate, because the frames had just been released and FrameMate was not updated, or they are never in FrameMate. Some vendors won't publish data in FrameMate because they are considered "luxury" brands and they are trying to protect their image I guess....?

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    Master OptiBoarder AngeHamm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Uilleann View Post
    Problems with OfficeMate and inventory usually stem from improper/incomplete training in my experience.
    Probably a fair statement. But no amount of training will change the fact that FrameMate imports many--but not all--RXable sunglass frames as Plano Sunglasses, which causes them to be automatically taxed. This requires us to remove them from the system, then manually re-enter them as Frames. You're also at the mercy of the data entry monkeys at the frame manufacturers who provide frequently-fantastical frame names, box measurements, and product costs, requiring quite a lot of customization. Very poor execution of what should be a simple inventory system.
    I'm Andrew Hamm and I approve this message.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AngeHamm View Post
    Probably a fair statement. But no amount of training will change the fact that FrameMate imports many--but not all--RXable sunglass frames as Plano Sunglasses, which causes them to be automatically taxed.
    Ange - you should be able to control this, there is a place to make this adjustment before transferring into OM. It is the same place that you indicate vendor, price markup, ect. If I recall correctly, there is an option to add sales tax or not.

    To original poster, don't confuse FrameMate/OfficeMate with FrameData - 2 separate things that work together.

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    We use Omate at work. I set up the Frame inventory system. It's a good system for an overall Practice/Dispensary but not if you just want to keep track of frame inventory.

    The Inventory has it's glitches. The barcode printer is as old as a dinosaur and prints such poor quality labels that the barcode scanners cannot read the UPCs printer by the printer. We now use the labels provided by the frame vendors.

    The reports are good, but can be improved. Anyone considering Omate should wait for a newer program that will use cloud computing. It's more cost efficient since you don't have to set up a network in-office. And once you decide to get the system, pay for someone to come to your office to teach you all of the features. It's worth the money. Trust me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by OpticianVlad View Post
    We use Omate at work. I set up the Frame inventory system. It's a good system for an overall Practice/Dispensary but not if you just want to keep track of frame inventory.

    The Inventory has it's glitches. The barcode printer is as old as a dinosaur and prints such poor quality labels that the barcode scanners cannot read the UPCs printer by the printer. We now use the labels provided by the frame vendors.

    The reports are good, but can be improved. Anyone considering Omate should wait for a newer program that will use cloud computing. It's more cost efficient since you don't have to set up a network in-office. And once you decide to get the system, pay for someone to come to your office to teach you all of the features. It's worth the money. Trust me.
    Good suggestion. So lucky to get the info from you.

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