Tracing Points

By LABTALK
Lens processing professionals know the value of Tracing Points—the database of frame shapes developed by LABTALK’s sister publication, Frames Data, that streamlines the lens-fitting process.

Now, users of the lab management software system (LMS) built by Digital Vision Inc. (DVI) will notice an enhanced experience. Instead of waiting for CD-ROM updates, Tracing Points for DVI users is updated automatically, on a weekly basis. The enhancement means that those using both Tracing Points and DVI will essentially have at their fingertips a “living” database of tracing information for thousands of the most popular frame designs, collected by Frames Data, augmented by DVI and stored for customer use.

“We’ve been using Tracing Points with DVI for about six months,” said Jeff Jansen, Operations Manager for the finishing and surfacing lab of Park Nicollet Medical Center in St. Louis Park, Minn. “Before we started with it, every time we got a new job in, our staff would have to trace the frame and hand-enter the data, and obviously that took up a lot of time. Now, we have reliable data already stored in the system. The coolest thing for me about Tracing Points is that it combines knowledge from Frames Data, DVI and all of the labs using it. I can trust that the information in the database is correct, and that means we save a lot of steps on a lot of jobs. It’s a ton of time savings.”

Jansen’s lab processes more than 100 jobs per day, and roughly 70 percent of them, he said, involve frames already in the Tracing Points storehouse.

 “I love the Tracing Points,” added Debbie Schmitz, President of LensWorks, a wholesale lab in Plymouth, Minn. “It has really taken the legwork out of putting frames in the database. What used to take hours to add drill points and tracing new frames and entering all of the information now happens with a click of a button. DVI has worked very hard on getting the drill points to move with every eye size, so we only have to enter one eye size. Before we would have to change it in the database for every eye size.”

The joint project between DVI and Frames Data effectively builds on the existing Tracing Points product, which in its original form is compatible with all other major LMSs, to better serve DVI customers, noted Tom Lamond, President, Frames Data and COO, Jobson Interactive. According to DVI software consultant Dan Lundberg, Tracing Points has shape information for over 80,000 SKUs of currently available and recently discontinued frame styles, from nearly every major frame company in the industry. It’s updated weekly, with plans to add as many as 10,000 new styles annually.

“For decades, software companies like DVI have had customers asking us, ‘Why can’t you get us a frames database?’,” Lundberg noted. “The problems is LMS vendors never get their hands on frames. There’s only one company in the world that gets the frames in their hands and that’s Frames Data, so it makes for a perfect partnership. Most labs trace every frame that they get in every day. One of our goals here is to dramatically reduce that.”

Lundberg added that the initiative is really an extension of what DVI is already doing on the lens side. DVI has a database of lens information that is continually updated; customers can download updates directly into their software systems. From Frames Data’s perspective, it is a natural, high-tech extension of the company’s primary mission: to provide standardized product information and improve communications between buyers and sellers of eyecare products.

“We’re very pleased to work with DVI to enhance the value of Frames Data’s Tracing Points,” said Lamond. “Our team adds hundreds of new trace files to the database every week, so it’s exciting to be able to deliver this crucial data to our lab partners in a much timelier manner. This project with DVI makes it much easier for our lab customers to use Tracing Points to improve their workflow, reduce turnaround time and, ultimately, increase customer satisfaction.”


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Labtalk November/December 2018