Q: How much does the software cost?  A: +
Subscription plans (billed monthly or annually) are designed for small, medium, and large brands/retailers and their supply chain partners, regardless of the number of users. Supply chain size corresponds to number of suppliers, testing programs (performance, chemical, safety, etc), and integrations with other enterprise systems (ERP/SAP, PLM, materials management, etc).

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Q: Do you have an easy way to migrate from spreadsheets to a real database solution for managing product compliance specifications and testing data?  A: +
We transpose your specification spreadsheets into a standard format, and this template file is then uploaded into Link. The organization of the data in the spreadsheet dictates the terminologies and workflows in the software. It’s that simple.

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Q: Who can access the software and use the tools?  A: +
Link connects all your supply chain partners through a single platform, harmonizing your test program data into a single source of truth. Brand, supplier, and lab users can all access the system, eliminating dependence on spreadsheet-based systems, email communications, third-party lab portals, and paper-based lab reports.

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Q: Does your software manage retesting for product testing failures, and the corrective actions taken to fix the issue?  A: +
Yes. The retest is linked to the original test request, and all corrective action communications and documentation can be maintained within the system.

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Q: If there is a testing failure, does your software allow traceability to the specific material (and material supplier) that caused the failure?  A: +
Yes. We are pinpointing precisely where a material failure occurs and automatically updating PLM and ERP systems so defective materials/products can’t be used in R&D or shipped to retailers. The Bill of Materials describes all the components of the product and their suppliers. When the component is tested by the lab, the result is traceable to the BoM and your supply chain. In effect, we solve the “blockchain problem” without blockchain.

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Q: If a material fails a test against a specification for use in children’s products, am I able to see whether the material passes for an alternate use, such as in products for adults?  A: +
Yes, there is a configuration setting in your test program that describes the alternate uses you would like the software to evaluate when testing is completed. This typically applies when there is a range of applications for a material: different degrees of skin contact, performance standards, age of the consumer, contact with food, destination country, etc. A polycarbonate material, for example, might not be suitable for use in safety goggles but acceptable for use in everyday eyewear.

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Q: Are there data analytics tools in LINK that allow me to see materials, suppliers, test methods, etc. that are failing at the highest frequency?  A: +
Your dashboard charts display all the common parameters and can be customized according to your preferences. Interactive tools are available for “what if” modeling, allowing sustainability and product compliance teams to instantly visualize how a material performs against alternate specifications, or how substitution of a material might impact pass/fail rate projections. You can customize your queries and export data to Excel or third-party BI tools you use. Because all your data is in one place, Link is able to provide a holistic, benchmarked view of supplier and material performance across any number of test programs and metrics.

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Q: If LINK is a central repository for all test-related data, how can I be assured that my supply chain partners see only the data they should see?  A: +
Link uses a special graph database, which is like a network of train tracks and train stations. The trains cannot reach stations which are not on their tracks, and many trains only go to one station. The tracks also follow rules about the cargo (data) that can be transported from one station to another. For example, a supplier user can only choose to send test requests to a lab with which they do business. No other labs will appear on their choice lists. Their lab will see these test requests in Link, as well as those sent to them by other suppliers they serve.

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Q: How is LINK different from the testing portal provided by my laboratory?  A: +
Your interface with the lab relies on trust and hope; Link relies on science and engineering. Your lab interface is a passive information portal and data silo; Link is an interactive, centralized data management system. Your lab translates your testing manual (or spreadsheets) into the testing protocols they offer, and you rely on them to test the right products and materials at the right frequency. Link is a lab-agnostic system you configure to enforce your sampling and testing requirements across all supply chain partners. If risk management is critical, there is no greater risk than putting your brand’s reputation in the hands of others.

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Q: How can I see a demo?  A: +
Painlessly. Connect with a solutions architect here.