Case Study: Job Filtration UK Ltd (formerly DRM)
After replacing a home-grown FoxPro database system with 123insight in 2007, Job Filtration UK Ltd (formerly DRM Industrial Fabrics) saw on-time deliveries improve, much better visibility/reporting on stock and purchasing, and were part of the customer development group for 123insight’s CRM+. Since then, DRM has not only extended 123insight throughout their facility, but also implemented into two other companies within the group. This '10 Years On' case study explores the company’s diversification and how 123insight has helped them to achieve this.
- DRM saw an increase in turnover of 50% with same number of admin staff
- 123insight helped DRM diversify after acquiring another company
- Now running the same standard software across three companies in the group
- Shop Floor Data Control reduces quoting time by providing accurate figures
- CRM+ used extensively throughout all companies
- Paperwork halved
- All software upgrades done remotely for a fixed fee
- 'Landed costs' features gives more accurate costings
DRM Industrial Fabrics Ltd, based in Bury, Lancashire initially focussed the roll-out of 123insight on stock control, production and purchasing, but in the last 10 years the system has extended its reach throughout the company, with 23 licences now in use. Despite turnover increasing by 50% they still have the same number of administration staff.
The first area to benefit from expansion was production, with the roll-out of Shop Floor Data Collection (SFDC), allowing staff to use barcode scanners to log on and off of jobs. Paula Heap, Purchasing Administrator said; “We started by rolling it out to a small number of computer literate staff, and as they got more confident we rolled it out to the others.” Added Peter McGuinness, MD; “It works well. It’s gives us excellent information that we previously used to spend hours collecting manually. I do a lot of work on preparing quotes, and it’s now very easy for me to drill down and say ‘we made this product several times - who made it, how long did it take, what were the issues, etc’. Now, I can find that out sat at my desk. Also, as we have a very diverse product range we’re not always making the same thing over and over again, but I can often find things that are similar in order to build a quote. ”
ISO quality accreditation
DRM is in the process of updating its ISO accreditation to ISO9001:2015, and Peter notes that 123insight has been instrumental for this; “When investigating quality issues it's great to be able to keep drilling down until you find everything you want, without having to hunt around. The new standard also puts far more emphasis on customer satisfaction.” Paula added; “It’s the traceability that helps. If you have a customer complaint or non-conformance it’s very easy to track through the system to find who did the job, where we got the fabric from, the related batch, etc.”
In 2017 DRM acquired a competitor, not only purchasing much of their stock and machinery, but also servicing many of their customers. Although this quickly and significantly changed the business, Peter had no concerns whether 123insight would be able to cope; “I've not really thought about it because it just does it. It's not been an issue.” Paula was involved with integrating the new machinery into 123insight, and found its tool management features useful, ensuring that staff are provided with tooling information in advance of manufacturing; “We're now starting to specify which job needs which tool, which then prints the relevant information out on the works order.”
Paper has continued to see a massive reduction, with a 50% fall over the course of the last decade. Paula believes that this is due to most documents now remaining in digital format; “Previously, when we produced works orders there used to be a lot of associated paperwork. Now, with 123insight we can link documents to a works order, so we don’t need to keep a whole raft of documents once they are attached. That’s massively cut down on our paper usage.”
Back in 2007 123insight’s CRM+ was still in development, and DRM was part of a customer focus group that helped to shape it. CRM+ has been adopted throughout the business, but has had the most impact in sales, giving them a seamlessly integrated solution, of which Peter commented; “If you ask me to say what’s a part of CRM+ and what isn’t I could not say.”
Business is about managing risk. If you’re always dealing with the same people that you’ve learnt to trust it’s a big advantage. It’s easy to become friends with someone that you don’t have disputes with.
In an initial case study written three years after going live, Paula stated that they had only used the 123insight Help Desk two or three times per year. Although this number has increased as they’ve taken advantage of new features, they are still within the 123insight customer average of one call per month. Paula has found that the Help Desk has been invaluable in resolving issues, even when they sometimes fall outside of the scope of 123insight; “The Help Desk are brilliant. We had an issue last week where we had a power cut and the software stopped working. I called the Help Desk, who provided me with a procedure to follow to establish if it was an IT issue or 123insight issue. It turned out to be an IT issue.”
DRM’s low monthly subscription also entitles them to regular software updates, and Paula commented that they have received several noteworthy features, including the ability to take additional transportation costs into account; “It was something that I had asked for. We were having to manually account for landed costs for some of our traders overseas. This was because it was difficult to match up costings due to the length of time that the deliveries sometimes take to come in. Now with ‘Landed Costs’ in 123insight you can see immediately what your actual cost is going to be. That's made a big difference in being able to see how much a product costs with all delivery costs included.”
Many companies are concerned about installing upgrades to software, and Paula noted that upgrades to other apps such as accounts have often been problematic, but with 123insight she never has any concerns. Although she would previously install updates herself, now she takes advantage of 123insight’s upgrade service, whereby Help Desk staff will install upgrades remotely for just £345; “In the beginning I used to do the upgrades myself but this was very time-consuming. Timesaving is a big thing for me, and I can’t think of a single time that the software has been upgraded where there have been any issues.”
123 Insight’s Customer Care staff regularly visit DRM, keeping them informed about updates to the products and company, and understanding how DRM’s business is changing, offering advice and ideas where possible. Paula appreciates that this up-front approach helps to keep a regular dialogue open, so that problems do not arise; “If there is an issue it’s dealt with - it’s not stuck on the back burner. Any issues are taken seriously, and resolved quickly and efficiently. It’s also nice that they come to see us, so we can put a face to a name.”
In addition to the benefits they have seen across their own company, DRM have also rolled out 123insight to two other companies within the group. One of the businesses had been trying to implement an alternative system for over a year before they were acquired by DRM. Although, due to the tens of thousands of pounds they had already invested, there was resistance to change, the decision was made to drop the system in favour of 123insight, which was subsequently installed, trained and up and running within two weeks.
Peter felt that the relationship they have with 123 Insight made it a simple decision to continue with it, expand its use and to roll it out to the other companies. He concluded; “Business is about risk and managing risk. If you’re always dealing with the same people that you’ve learnt to trust it’s a big advantage. It’s easy to become friends with someone that you don’t have disputes with.”
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