Whether you have a 50 employee company or an empire of one, your business success depends on your ability to set and achieve goals. Unfortunately, figuring out exactly what the right direction is, and the road map to get there, isn’t as easy.
After doubling its annual sales, LDH a UK based food supplier, identified a crucial goal that needed to be met. That goal was the deployment an enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution that would enable the company to control its supply chain.
“UK retailers were developing more efficient supply chains with enhanced control and visibility of individual pallets and the products on them, as they travelled from suppliers to the customer,” said Mark Anson, IT director of LDH. “Our legacy system could not provide this visibility, nor did it enable us to run efficient logistics.”
LDH supplies a large range of products and each has its own challenges. Seasonal fruit and vegetables are often ordered a year in advance. That means the team needs to deliver agreed upon volumes at the right time over a number of months, and that was quite a challenge on a legacy system.
“Our procurement managers had to manually extract information from our software, export it to a spread-sheet, and rely on the logistics team to calculate what stock to buy and when,” explained Paul Nicholas, the logistics director. “The length of time needed to simply review each task was overwhelming. Plus, it was extremely difficult to forecast requirements with any accuracy.”
Whenever employees or managers wanted reports, they had to engage the IT team. “My organization was continually developing reports, until we had literally thousands of them. Most of the reports were redundant, but because reporting and analysis was not standardized, we simply lost track and would repeat our efforts,” recalls Anson.
Realizing that it needed new ERP software to support its growing business and new market dynamics, LDH began evaluating the options. After looking at a number of systems LDH chose SAP as an established brand in the marketplace. SAP suggested working with itelligence Business Solutions.
“itelligence are specialists at implementing SAP for a Wholesale Distribution solution portfolio within the midmarket sector,” explains Anson. “We were impressed with the steps itelligence took to understand the business and goals. They took the time to develop a solution that was right not only now but right for the future.”
Once the system went live, Anson described the switch over, “We went live with no issues. In fact, one retailer said it was the smoothest implementation it had ever taken part in.”
According to Nicholas, LDH is now able to predict its goods, receipts, and sales with 95% accuracy for planning purposes. “It’s quite amazing how we can predict with such accuracy what to expect over a 10-week period, considering that we’re bringing in product from all over the world, and we don’t necessarily have firm commitments from retailers. We were nowhere near this with our legacy system. The result of this accuracy is that our stock holdings have become very consistent, which in turn enables us to plan better financially. We know exactly what money will be going out and coming in.”
Establishing business goals involves a fair amount of reflection on what makes your business tick, and what you want its future to be. Partners are there to help simplify the process of choosing and deploying SAP innovations that support your ambitions.
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