Eclipse Users Group (UFO) Newsletter                                                                                        July 2014
July Web Classes Posted
Class TitleFormat / Presented by
July 7, 2014
New Hire #1 Solar Basic System Navigation 
Webinar - Zerion
July 8, 2014
New Hire #2 Solar Basic System Navigation Sales 
Webinar - Zerion
July 9, 2014
New Hire #3 Solar Basic System Navigation Purchasing 
Webinar - Zerion
July 10, 2014
New Hire #4 Solar Basic System Navigation Warehouse
Webinar - Zerion
July 15, 2014
Claiming Your Share of the 637 Billion Dollar B2B Market 
Vendor Product Webinar Computer Pundits Corp
July 17, 2014
What's New In Release 8.7.9
Roundtable Webinar 
Bill Wright, Epicor
July 22, 2014
Reporting & Business Intelligence for Eclipse Optimizing Eclipse 
Vendor Product Webinar - MITS
July 24, 2014Managing Transfers Eterm Webinar - Zerion
July 29, 2014

Content & e-Commerce

Vendor Product Webinar - CIMM2 - Unilog Content Solutions, LLC
July 31, 2014
Managing Transfers Solar 
Webinar - Zerion
Upcoming On-Site Solar the New Frontier - It is What You Make It - August 14-15, 2014 Kansas City, MO
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New and Returning Members June 2014
It was nice to meet so many current and potentially future members at the Eclipse Users Group (UFO) booth during Insights 2014. 
New Members

Company Name
EP Supply (Empire Plumbing)Broken Arrow
Standard Plumbing & Industrial
San Diego
Swift Electrical SupplySouth HackensackNJ
Returning Members

Aquaflow Pump & SupplyBearDE

Marketing Committee Update - Newsletter - Web - Social Media - Encounter

By Robert Hascall, UFO Marketing Committee Chair



The Marketing Committee is happy to welcome Angie Meyer of Universal Supply Group to the Newsletter sub-committee!  Angie will help Bob Keeran with scheduling and collecting articles and content for the monthly UFO Newsletter.  The UFO is always looking for member companies and their associates who are willing to contribute their time to help make the UFO stronger for its membership.  Thanks Angie & Bob!!!


Web Development

In case you haven't noticed, there have been some changes to the Eclipse Users Group website!  So that we can be more effective in communicating messages to our membership, we've added a slider to our home page.  This will allow us to provide more information on more topics than the previous single-static image.  In fact, if you go to the site now, you'll notice five topics of interest giving you the option to jump to a slide or view the entire slideshow.  Another nice change was making the Eclipse Users Group Training Videos page cleaner and more useful (you must be logged in for some features to be available).  Previously, the page was crowded with detail instead of being presented in summary fashion.  This page has been changed to show summary information only.  If you would like more details on the class, just click on the class name and you will be directed to a page with more details.  In addition you'll notice that the handouts can be downloaded from the summary page beneath the video play button.



Have you liked our Facebook page yet?  If not, head on over to and like us right away!  Facebook is just another way that we reach out to our user community and so we hope you'll like us soon!  In fact, have everyone at your office like us!  We're also on Twitter, so check us out and follow us at


Encounter 2014

Hopefully you're registered for Encounter 2014!  If not, then you need to contact Mary Barlow, we were able to accommodate a few more attendees. Check the UFO home page on the Encounter 2014 slide of the slideshow.  If you ARE registered, we look forward to another great event filled with learning and networking.  This event will be a great source of information for your company and your associates where new and valuable relationships are certain to be formed.  We are a community and that's where our strength lies.  Hope to see you there! 

The UFO Advice Column
by 'Uncle' Frank Ousterhout




Dear Uncle Frank,


                I notice that when Biff is working on orders in Solar he has an extra block alongside the body of the order.  What is that all about?  Should I be using it?


                Willy Loman. from Brooklyn




Dear Mr. Loman,


                The block you are asking about is the very useful Order Summary Pane.  You just click on the arrow at the top of the pane to open it or close it.  It should stay opened or closed for future orders and is useful in many ways.


                When you are about to start an order, you can directly enter the Customer PO#, Release # and Ordered By.  In Eterm, you must go to the Header of the Order to enter those items.  How many times does your customer start the dialog with "Here is my PO# 1348765 for........."?  Now you can easily enter the PO# on the order screen Body.  It is also a good prompt to remind you to ask your customer if they want a PO#, job name, etc. on the order.  And while you are at it, fill in the Ordered By block (which is often helpful later on.)


                The customer phone number is automatically displayed.  This is very useful to have anytime you are working an order.  Need to call back a customer about an order?  The phone number is right there!


                Below the Phone Number will be listed the multiple generations (if they exist for the order) just like shown on the Status screen.  You can click on any generation and the Body in front of you will change to show you the items that are on THAT generation.  It is an easy way to see what items are on which generation.  No more bouncing back and forth from the Status screen to the Body screen.


                For those of you who want to limit their mouse use (like me) you can just left arrow from the Quantity field to the Order Summary Pane and then arrow up and down through the fields.  Then a right arrow will get you back to the body of the order.


                Finally, on your order screen 'File' menu (top left) you have the options to move the Order Summary Pane placement from left to right, to expand or collapse it, or even to just hide it.  You might say that there is no dearth to the salesmanship benefits that the Order Summary Pane provides.




                Uncle Frank



Support Corner

By Camille Alberico

Senior Manager, Eclipse Software Support/Customer Support 


Eclipse 8.6.8 and higher, uses Windows Desktop Applications to view images attached to documents in Solar/Eterm. Most PC's are configured to view .tif and .bmp images with the "Windows Picture and Fax Viewer" program. We do not recommend using this application to view images. The Windows Picture and Fax Viewer program cache's all images in the directory and stores them for quick retrieval. This is great for directories with 10-20 images in it. But when a storage location has several thousand images in it and the Windows Pic and Fax Viewer tries to open an image from one of these large directories it caches all the images and "freezes" Eclipse. The opening of images, and the printing of images, is slow as a result. For this reason we do not recommend using this program.  MS Office Document Viewer, or IRFAN Viewer are the suggested applications. 

Irfan Viewer is freeware and can be downloaded from their website.
Once Irfanview is installed follow these steps:
Open Irfanview
Open Options
Open Properties/settings
Select Browsing/Editing
Uncheck the View all files in directory... and Show hidden files/folders while moving


Avalara: Making Sales Tax Less Taxing

by Avalara, Vendor Partner




Avalara AvaTax dynamically delivers instantaneous sales tax decisions based on precise geo-location in more than 10,000 taxing jurisdictions in the U.S. For most businesses sales tax is an obligatory, complex nightmare and automating this process saves time, money and effort. AvaTax automatically assigns hundreds of thousands of taxability rules and the latest jurisdiction boundaries to deliver the right rate and tax calculation.


That's why Avalara, the industry's most trusted provider of sales and use tax compliance services has come together with Epicor to create Epicor Tax Connect.  Epicor Tax Connect streamlines the tax compliance process, saves time, reduces errors, and cuts costs. Epicor Tax Connect powered by Avalara AvaTax performs address validation, jurisdiction determination, and rate calculations on-demand all in the cloud. Epicor Tax Connect is built into the Epicor Eclipse platform ensuring distribution and wholesalers in plumbing, HVAC, electrical, and PVF industries have a powerful technology solution. 


Eclipse has deep industry functionality that impacts all areas of your business, such as when to buy and how much to buy, back office accounting functions, and sales order entry-the most used function for every distributor. Other highlights of the system include:

  • Powerful search features that allow you to locate any information you need from any screen
  • Multi-company, multi-branch, and multi-currency capabilities
  • Advanced purchasing and inventory management that helps decrease your inventory investment while increasing customer service levels
  • Secure, role-based permissions and complete audit trails (SOX compliant).
  • Real-time, time-lined, and transactional-based system (no batch accounting processes ever again!)
  • Warehouse management that improves accuracy and efficiency
Eclipse with Epicor Tax Connect powered by Avalara AvaTax, not only provides full end-to-end sales and use tax compliance within your existing ERP but also performs the following functions to ensure a solution that grows with your business.

  • Global Calculation
  • Consumer Use
  • Streamlined Sales Tax (SST)
  • Precise rate determination
  • Address validation
  • Reporting
  • Sourcing rules
  • Product taxability
  • Common add-ons


Learn more here ...          

Is your IT Department a Cost Center or a Profit Center?

by BDL - Business Data Links


 "Geek-Speak" or English?

Many wholesalers look at their IT staff as a cost center to the business. Their primary duties being, keep the systems up and running and answer questions or problems the staff has that is preventing them from accomplishing their job duties. Most IT managers talk really good "geek-speak" and the leadership team doesn't necessarily have the "Google-Geek-Speak- Translator" app installed on their smartphone! This can be very intimidating and many times decisions that should really be made by C-Level executives are left in the hands of the IT dept. This isn't necessarily always bad, but there's no doubt that a "disconnect" can exist between what right for the business, and what is technically possible or plausible.  


Every IT manager should be thinking, "How does my job help the business increase sales, enhance operational excellence, or improve gross well as proactively prevent unnecessary costs to the business"?


Business Application Expertise

Every IT department should own the responsibility of being the expert in your ERP system (Eclipse). It's a common statistic that most distributors are only using between 25%-30% of what Eclipse has to offer. Is your IT manager an Eclipse application specialist prepared to recite what the best practice SOP is for handling Customer Returns, Trouble Order Management, or Expediting PO's? What about how to use sales order entry more effectively to increase sales through add-on products, or how to use velocity pricing in the matrix for increasing gross margins? If your IT department is focused on being a profit center, not a cost center, these are the areas of the application they become an expert in. 


Vision for the Future 

How much time does your IT department spend on leading areas of technology? For example, have areas that prevent intrusion or system down circumstances been thoroughly researched and has a solution been put in place?

Data Breach Vulnerabilities: Have your systems been penetration tested? How vulnerable are you to hackers? How do your security policies prevent these types of risks? Are you aware of the costs that would be associated with a data breach?

Visualization: Have you evaluated the benefits of visualizing Eclipse? How could this provide for scalability and availability? What would the benefits be for disaster recovery?

These are all areas that your IT department should be evaluating, be experts on, and create solutions for, as well as be able to translate it back into English so the shareholders can understand how the IT dept is a profit center, not a cost center! 



Eclipse Users Group/UFO | 813-643-1001 | |
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Brandon, FL 33510
Disclaimer  The information contained in this newsletter is for general information purposes only. The information is provided by UFO and while we endeavor to keep the information up-to-date and correct, we make no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, about the completeness, accuracy, reliability, suitability or availability with respect to this newsletter or the information, products, services, or related graphics contained in the newsletter for any purpose. Any reliance you place on such information is therefore strictly at your own risk. In no event will we be liable for any loss or damage including without limitation, indirect or consequential loss or damage, or any loss or damage whatsoever arising from loss of data arising out of, or in connection with, the use of the information in this newsletter.

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