Geoprise Technologies: Enhanced Performance, Security, and Productivity

Randy Spiess, CEO & Treasurer, Nelson Nones, Founder, Chairman & President, and Tony Marston, Director, Research & Development Nelson Nones, the Founder, Chairman, and President of Geoprise Technologies has been out in front of the world of enterprise resources planning (ERP) even before the term actually existed. “In 1981, I started building a custom system that consisted of integrated financial, supply chain, and manufacturing applications—a feature set typical of today’s ERP systems,” he says. While this was the first ERP that he ever designed, it surely was not his last. With the increasing need to harmonize the global operations of medium-sized and large businesses, Nones, alongside his partners and development team, kept delivering updated ERP systems to fulfill their needs. Their robust ERP application suite could streamline business operations anywhere in the world, delivering top speed, reliability, efficiency, and security utilizing a bilateral trust model. Although the model enabled authorized persons to encrypt information before sharing it, Nones and Geoprise Research and Development Director Tony Marston continued their quest for more. The search was for a stronger technology to completely eradicate security vulnerabilities and enhance business-to-business (B2B) collaboration. Their focus didn’t go unrewarded. They conceptualized their product GM-X which was the manifestation of Geoprise Technologies’ vision.

Going beyond traditional methods, the GM-X ERP application offers next-gen data exchange for the pharma and life sciences industry. Geoprise Technologies’ decades of experience collaborating with the world’s largest manufacturers enables it to address the needs of hospitals and clinics, makers and distributors of pharmaceutical products and medical devices, and healthcare insurers, which include quality systems, batch recordkeeping, traceability, consigned inventory, procurement, and vendor management. Being the first of its kind, GM-X ERP consists of 17 integrated subsystems—that include master data and content management, business process management, and many more—and can run on any browser that is installed in a laptop or a mobile device.

Performance and Mobility

In collaborative business scenarios involving an enterprise and its third parties such as customers, suppliers, 3PLs, contract manufacturers, or staff on demand, the traditional way of deploying GM-X requires one of those parties to host a centralized GM-X application and database. The application is typically deployed within a demilitarized zone (DMZ) or classified military zone (CMZ) so it can be conveniently accessed by internal employees and third parties alike (using the public Internet). Alternatively, for greater security, the application could be deployed behind the host party’s internal firewall and other parties could access it using a virtual private network (VPN). Either way, the GM-X database is deployed inside the host party’s internal firewall to keep the data secure.


GM-X ERP has a built-in mechanism, which guarantees that data items created independently by each blockchain participant will mesh properly

Unlike traditional web applications—such as online retail banking portals designed to serve marketing and other business purposes—the GM-X ERP application is designed and built strictly for core business process execution. “In the corporate world, the only things that matter are performance, security, end-user productivity, and cost. Performance, in turn, is determined by an application’s speed, reliability, accuracy, and the extent to which the functional requirements of the business are satisfied. As GM-X ERP relies far more on HTML and Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) than on JavaScript, the application behaves consistently on all the popular browsers that business enterprises typically use today,” states Marston.

The GM-X ERP application deploys Bootstrap, a responsive design framework that relies primarily on CSS instead of JavaScript to implement the responsive design approach for all 2,580 visible GM-X screens, which deliver an optimized view of a web page no matter what device is used. GM-X also uses an MVC framework at runtime, just like AngularJS. “Our MVC framework doesn’t require static HTML pages. Instead, it generates HTML pages on the fly whenever users request them,” says Randy Spiess, Treasurer and CEO of Americas, Geoprise Technologies.

Leveraging Blockchain Technology

Although the enterprise-grade GM-X ERP application addresses the ever-growing needs of pharma and life sciences industries to transact business beyond the confines of traditional offices and facilities, one predicament, however, remains their data integrity and security issues. “The major reason behind this predicament is the existence of traditional EDI systems, which were considered safe, until the time when people became aware of the cyber threats. But now as the curtain is lifted, the number of security breaches are accelerating at an alarming pace,” according to Spiess. Adding to these challenges is today’s regulatory landscape, which contract manufacturing organizations (CMOs) find hard to keep up with, as different countries have different regulations with regards to packing and manufacturing.

Recognizing the increasing need for business-to-business (B2B) collaboration in the face of these urgent security issues, in 2018 Geoprise Technologies joined the MultiChain Product Partner Program and launched GM-X for Blockchain, the first and only ERP application ever to implement blockchain technology for secure B2B collaboration. Nones mentions, “Not only did MultiChain keep a permanent, tamper-proof, and verifiable blockchain ledger for GM-X ERP, it provided a secure ‘pipe’ for pushing or pulling data in either direction between any two organizations, under the control of automatic ‘data valves’ at either end to protect confidentiality, maintain control over information assets, and enhance mutual trust among trading partners.”

“Security is a major concern and one of the toughest challenges.
Conventional tools, such as web portals, centralized databases, and even electronic data interchange (EDI) are proving vulnerable to increasing security challenges,” says Nones. “GM-X ERP has a built-in mechanism which guarantees that data items created independently by each blockchain participant will mesh properly, without any collisions, when published to a common blockchain ledger.” The mechanism makes GM-X much more flexible than conventional ERP systems. Even though GM-X ERP natively incorporates all GS1 Class 1 Identification Keys standards into its database and application design, it doesn’t force organizations to bear the burden of adopting those standards in parallel with their internal numbering systems for the sole purpose of collision avoidance.

Total Solution for Maintaining Compliance

Being the world’s first ERP application to incorporate proven blockchain technology, GM-X ERP for Blockchain eliminates a known security vulnerability affecting conventional electronic audit trails, which exposes pharmaceutical manufacturers and distributors to potentially dangerous non-compliance risks. Further, the ability for a single GM-X ERP installation to communicate simultaneously with multiple blockchain networks creates many B2B collaboration opportunities in collaborative sales, distribution, and billing processes.

"Because GM-X ERP relies far more on HTML than on JavaScript, the application behaves consistently on all the popular browsers that business enterprises typically use today"

Using the GM-X Alert and Workflow subsystems, pharmaceutical manufacturers can upload information on paper forms known as ‘travelers’—because they move through production along with the manufactured batches—into the controlled GM-X document repository. Afterward, the manufacturers can also obtain the qualified person’s (QP’s) electronic signature. A Blockchain Trigger from the Alert table causes the GM-X Blockchain subsystem to publish these files on the blockchain. Together with the document metadata and electronic signatures, this mechanism forms a permanent, tamper-proof, and verifiable audit trail of production batch records. The same blockchain trigger configuration can also be leveraged for static documentation such as standard operating procedures and work instructions. Further, the GM-X Blockchain subsystem provides an interactive task for viewing electronic audit trails directly from the blockchain. “Our blockchain solution requires no complex programming effort or interfaces, and can be configured to properly maintain a full and completely secure audit trail in a matter of hours,” adds Marston.

Having carved a unique niche in the pharma and life sciences ERP landscape, Geoprise Technologies is on the move to enhance their key verticals further with the technology they have developed, and focus on the specific demands of the market. Additionally, the company also plans to cover more geographic areas worldwide by scaling up sales and expanding its offices globally, especially, in North America and Europe. “Competitors will no doubt rise to the challenge in the future, but today, GM-X ERP for Blockchain is the only blockchain-ready ERP system available for consideration,” concludes Nones.

Company
Geoprise Technologies

Headquarters
Minnetonka, MN

Management
Randy Spiess, CEO & Treasurer, Nelson Nones, Founder, Chairman & President, and Tony Marston, Director, Research & Development

Description
Provides the GM-X ERP application suite that addresses the needs of hospitals and clinics, medical device makers, distributors, pharmaceutical manufacturers, and healthcare insurers

Geoprise Technologies