Inside Tigunia: A Conversation with Brad Prendergast, Solutions Architect Team Leader

 

Thank you for reading this month’s Inside Tigunia. Tigunia is comprised of industry-leading experts. Inside Tigunia features full-length, candid conversations to introduce the team to our friends and clients.

 

This month’s spotlight will be on Brad Prendergast, Solutions Architect Team Leader.

 

This conversation has been edited for length and clarity.

 

UPDATE: Brad Prendergast has recently been promoted to Director of Development.

 

 

Tigunia
Hey Brad, thank you for joining me today. We’ll go ahead and get started. First question, how did you first find yourself working in the information technology and Business Central/NAV implementation fields and what has your experience look like thus far?

 

Brad Prendergast
The first of my experience began in school. I went to college for CIS, computer information systems. After that, I went into the army and had a short stint doing some information systems work there. Once I got out of the army, I ended up working at an accounting firm doing system administration and database management. Over the past 20 years, I’ve worked primarily on implementing, developing, and supporting NAV, Business Central, and ERP implementations. I’ve been on both sides of it, I’ve worked for partners as well as end users. This gives me a perspective of somebody both going through an implementation as well as somebody performing the implementation and understanding the viewpoints of both sides.

 

Tigunia
That’s great, surely that is some valuable insight. I know that Tigunia can implement an ERP from the ground up or assist in adjusting or improving an ERP implementation completed by someone else. Has there been a time when you needed to assist a client with an existing ERP structure, and what did you do for them?

 

Brad Prendergast
Yeah, so there was a client I worked with on a Business Central implementation. They worked in the large manufacturing and distribution space. They were struggling to effectively optimize their operations and they lacked a robust ERP at the time. We had to focus more on helping their distribution side of things. We made enhancements to the core application through integrations to external systems. We were able to streamline processes using Business Central to increase the efficiency. It helped their ability to locate and distribute products from their warehouse.

We interfaced Business Central with Pick to Light (PTL) systems, which allows the individuals in the warehouse to quickly locate and pick the product. It can be a massive boost in efficiency. By extension, all of that can interface with external shipping information, like shipping providers, to manage the shipment data for their packages. We then made it so that BC could generate dashboards and comprehensive reporting, which boosted the ability to locate and identify orders that need to be pushed through the system. The clients ended up with greater visibility into all of their operations, including inventory, shipping, and procurement. All in all, it was a massive improvement, and the clients were very happy.

 

Tigunia
That’s good to hear. How would you say the ERP industry as a whole has evolved since you first got involved?

 

Brad Prendergast
I think that with the increased use of technology, individuals and businesses become more reliant on the application. It’s had to involve an increase in trust of these applications, since there is such a reliance on them. These track a lot of their data and give them way better visibility into their business. Additionally, improvements to data management that can be made from anywhere. Increased accessibility and portability has been big.

 

Tigunia
When it comes to staying up to date on the latest happenings in the in the field, whether it be IT or whether it be specifically ERP, what would you say are your go-to resources?

 

Brad Prendergast
I rely primarily on Microsoft. Microsoft publishes a lot of information on their website and on their Twitter account. There’s also a number of user forums and Yammer groups that are sponsored by Microsoft and industry communities and user groups. With the application changing more rapidly, I find that it’s more important to stay up to date with what Microsoft publishes as they plan and road map out current and future releases. They publish those on their website on a regular basis.

 

Tigunia
Sure. Alright, remote work can sometimes introduce different challenges that might not exist in a classic office environment. How would you say that you keep yourself motivated and keep those around you motivated?

 

Brad Prendergast
I think that working in a remote environment, one of the most important things that you can do is attempt to keep a regular schedule. Particularly regarding when you start and stop work, and then keeping up with some of the daily routines. Some people would drive to an office; I like to get up, go to the gym, come back, get dressed, get ready and almost simulate a commute to an office. I also try to have a regularly scheduled lunch and have scheduled breaks throughout the day. Once work is done, I isolate my work and my home life while within the home, so I have a separate office. While I’m in the office, I primarily focus on work so it keeps me in work mode during the day.

When it comes to how I motivate others: One of the big things that I promote around here is regular touch base phone calls. I typically push for everyone to have their camera on, which gives a better feel of being in the office and being able to look and see and feel that there’s another person on the other side of that phone call. I’m a big fan of the remote water cooler talk, whether it be in a Teams channel or talking to someone over the phone. It helps us to keep connected.

 

Tigunia
Right, for sure. Alright, transitioning to a few personal questions. Do you have a favorite book or movie, and if so, why did it speak to you so much?

 

Brad Prendergast
I don’t know if I have a favorite movie, but like many of the other individuals here, I’ve always been drawn to the whole Star Wars series. I’m a big Star Wars and Marvel fan. I guess if I had to pick one movie, I’d say The Bronx Tale, if we’re looking outside of Star Wars and Marvel. I’m a big fan of that movie.

 As far as reading is concerned, I actually just recently transitioned to reading more fiction. I primarily used to always read business and technical books, but now I started to branch out to use reading as another source of entertainment. I find it a little bit more entertaining than movies, actually. I’m currently reading The Witcher. I watched The Witcher series on Netflix recently, and that got me started reading those books. So that’s the current book series that I’m reading, and they’re quite good.

 

Tigunia
Do you have a motto or mantra or quote that you live by?

 

Brad Prendergast
If I had to pick one, I’d want to say this one: “Come to me with solutions, not problems.” A number of people will sit there and complain and say something like, “Oh we should do this or we should change this.” But sometimes it’s before you actually say that something is not working. Try to identify what the problem is, because you can’t really fix a problem unless you identify the root cause versus a symptom. It’s so much easier to complain rather than try to be a proactive part of the solution.

 

Tigunia
Yes, I agree. This is the last question: what do you do to make life count?

 

Brad Prendergast
I think at this point in my life, it’s somewhat easy to just be a good person. I live and let live. I try to get out and experience as much as I can in life, and also share those experiences with other people. Sometimes, somebody may not be aware of something, and you can share your experiences and knowledge. It’s been a little difficult just lately to form those kinds of connections, with the ongoing pandemic. But volunteering with your local community and getting as involved as possible. Again, it’s been hard to do that lately, at least in-person. To boil it down, I try to experience as much as I can, I try to just be a good person, I try to give back, and I try to make life a better place.

 

 

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