Zatkoff's Computer Evolution

October 01, 2019

Over the years, Zatkoff Seals & Packings has grown from having one dedicated vendor that handled all our programming needs, to having most of our developers onsite. Today, we have an in-house technology department that not only handles all of our custom programming needs, but also works on special projects to enhance our customer and supplier relationships.

When the first computer system arrived in 1972, it had two monitors and our office staff was told that “eventually everyone will have a monitor at their desk.” Today, every office staff member has at least two monitors!

In 1988, we spent a year rewriting our computer system from scratch to the IBM RS6000, in order to improve our internal system and better service our customers. At the time, computer storage costs were extremely high worldwide, and to save money all dates were stored with a two-digit year (85/86/87), which worked until the year 2000 drew closer, when we needed more digits to avoid date sorting issues and century confusion.

We spent months updating our systems to recognize the new four-digit format and tested for Y2K compliance. Our President Gary Zatkoff and Technology Manager Cliff Sebring spent many hours reconfiguring and reprogramming-both remember it as a headache they are relieved not to have to experience again.

Today, we have a fully-custom software solution that we are constantly updating and improving upon for ordering, quoting, invoicing, purchasing, inventory control, manufacturing, accounting, and additional specialized systems.

Communication between our headquarters in Farmington Hills and our seven other branches has improved dramatically over the years with the advances of the Internet. We once had expensive fully-stocked computer server rooms at each facility, with slow internet speeds of only 5,000 Bps to 15,000 Bps. Today, working from home or another remote site is just as fast as working at the office, thanks to technology advancements and our centralized server environment.

As our technology has improved over the years, it has enabled us to work on more advanced projects to assist both our employees and our customers. Some of the projects we are developing today include:

  • The new and improved ZAP>IT® system, which incorporates the traditional features while allowing for seamless data exchange between computer systems, instead of vendor-managed scanning or RFID devices that can add extra steps and complexity for customers.
  • Advanced Shipping Notices for bulk order receiving functionality through data exchange files with unique barcodes or packing slip identifiers.
  • Automated forecast sharing to ensure inventory is available even during the highest spikes in part usage.
  • Fully-functional receiving data file sharing to catch errors before payments are processed, resulting in additional cost savings.
  • Many more…

We continue to strive for innovation and stay on the cutting edge of technology to better serve our customers. It all began with the intuition and wisdom derived from our founder, Roger Zatkoff.

Contact Zatkoff Seals & Packings to discover how our continuous innovation can help your business.

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