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Process Manufacturing

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Tor Coatings

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Customer: Tor Coatings

Site link: www.tor-coatings.com

The requirement

For over 30 years, Tor Coatings has manufactured its own branded products as well as products for other well known brands. The Birtley-based business is a subsidiary of RPM International Inc., a multi-national multi-billion dollar business with subsidiaries which manufacture and market high performance coatings, sealants and speciality chemicals.

In 2008, Tor’s management team concluded that their existing software, which integrated stock control, EDI and batch traceability, was no longer fit for purpose as they required a ‘real time’ solution which offered accurate business critical information. Parent group RPM also required improved information on financial performance.

The existing software was also text-based, matching Tor’s past production requirements, but what they needed was a graphical user interface (GUI) solution which could display KPIs in a dashboard style view for management purposes.

The solution

K8 Manufacturing consolidates data from across a business into a single source, ensuring all information is both accurate and up to date. The system was easily configured to work within Tor’s manufacturing and multi-fill requirements, and also offered a till sales module for use with the company’s sales counter.

Gains and benefits

  • Configured to suit the business
  • Complete control of raw materials
  • Improved warehouse management
  • Purchasing reflects sales orders
  • Platform for business growth
  • Opportunities to extend system use
  • Pro-active business management
  • Future proof - turn on functionality

Read the full story here.

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The support we receive has always been very professional. Our on-going relationship and service experience continues to be excellent.

- Jan Roberts, Customer Service Manager

 

Tiles

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Tileflair

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Customer: Tileflair

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.tileflair.co.uk

Challenge

Tileflair has grown from a single branch business, established in 1972 and trading from a high street location, to the largest, privately owned wall and floor tile distributor in the South of England. The company operates a flagship store in Bristol plus nine other showrooms and two warehouses across south of England.

Tileflair’s managing director is Matthew Johnson. He said, “Our focus is on service which is reflected in our slogan, ‘Create something beautiful’. We make sure we provide a welcoming environment in all our stores so customers are inspired by our room settings and looked after by our staff who are helpful, knowledgeable and, most importantly, genuinely interested in what the customer wants.”

Matthew said that it’s often his trade customers, the fixers, who send in their clients to choose their tiles. He continued, “We also have to provide our trade customers with a service they can rely on. They need to trust us to get the right tiles to the right place at the right time. And this is where K8 software is really important. It enables us to provide that service.”

K8 was installed at Tileflair in 1998. Today there are 50 users and the system processes more than 300,000 transactions each year and holds nearly 13,000 product files. The initial need was for a system that could handle inter-branch trading and they could add branches to as the company grew. “Another reason we chose K8,” explained Matthew, “was because whatever you are doing on the system, you are always ready for a sale. You can keep the sales screen open and just flip back to it. Complete visibility of stock and the abilty to search for products and add them to an order so quickly and easily were other key benefits. It’s also very easy and intuitive to use.”

Gains and benefits

  • Helps Tileflair provide a service that trade customers can rely on
  • Handles inter-branch trading with the ability to add new branches as the company grows
  • Lets the sales team access K8 on their iPads with customers in the showroom
  • Helps the warehouse team plan the most efficient pick routes and measure productivity

Read the full story here.

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18 years later K8 is in widespread use at trade counters, and I still see it offering new and enhanced features that will help both our companies continue to grow.

- Matthew Johnson, Managing Director, Tileflair

 

Tiles

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Tileflair

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Customer: Tileflair

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.tileflair.co.uk

Challenge

Tileflair is the largest, privately-owned tile distributor in the South of England. It offers an extensive range of high quality tiles - sourced from around the world - and has been supplying the trade, contract and retail sectors since 1972. Tileflair has nine outlets, an online shop and a central warehouse located in Bristol.

Moving with the times

Tileflair’s initial need was for a system to handle inter-branch trading, to replace a previous system where processes were cumbersome. It was also looking for an IT partner that really understood the tile business. It opted for a distribution system, rather than an EPOS product, and Kerridge Commercial Systems was chosen from five short-listed suppliers. The system went live in December 1998 and, in 2007, Tileflair upgraded to K8. Then, in May 2015, it upgraded to the system’s latest version.

“Our aim is to get the best return that we can from K8 - to enhance our efficiency and service. Each branch now has its own dashboard, which provides better insight into the business, not just in terms of sales but also customer trends, margins, stock turnover, etc. The fact that we’ve got access to this information - and can access it from the sales screen – means that we’re always ready for a sale.”

“The data warehouse module is promising too, giving far more information than we’ve been able to access in the past, without having to run multiple reports.”

Resilient, reliable and responsive

“Crucially, K8 has proven to be very resilient; it’s never frozen or locked-up! And, we’re now looking forward to exploring other system features, in addition to the most used ones, so that we can gain full advantage from K8.”

“From a partnership point-of-view, we’re committed to Kerridge and we have a great relationship with them. They are very responsive and are good at seeing things from the customer’s point of view.”

K8 goes mobile - and other efficiencies

Tileflair’s next upgrade will include browser access. iPads have become key selling tools for its sales team and it will enable them to access the system in a truly mobile sense, rather than steering customers back to the counter to check stock, etc.

“Having browser access will enhance the whole customer experience. And, we’re now also trialing the delivery management system and will be testing the warehouse management system from January 2016. Our aim is to continue to enhance our internal productivity, to really understand our customers’ needs and to continue to work closely with Kerridge to make our business as efficient as it can be.”

Gains and benefits

  • Complete reliability and enhanced efficiency.
  • Intuitive, menu-led processes that can be instantly accessed from the sales screen. Easy to use – more time can be dedicated to the customer.
  • Flexible sales order processing, accessible from one screen.
  • Inter-branch trading capability – better stock utilisation, improved customer service.
  • Accurate reporting and management information – effective decision making.
  • Forecasting tools invaluable – improved ordering, saves time, more effective use of working capital.
  • Quick and efficient automated processes – smoother, controlled and more efficient operation.
  • A platform for expansion of branch network – minimal IT investment impact.
  • Online support calls via secure extranet – issues recorded without delay, saves time.

K8 is a fully integrated Trading and Business Management solution for distributors, wholesalers, merchants and retailers. Combining a suite of modules, it helps you source effectively, stock efficiently, sell profitably and service competitively.

K8 is designed to help you get closer to your customers, build profits, and manage your margins. From your sales team, to your back office, K8 has been developed by distributive trades experts to improve the day-to-day performance of your team.

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

Download a K8 Brochure  

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Our focus is on service, as reflected in our ‘Create something beautiful’ slogan. K8 has enabled us to enhance this, giving us access to a wealth of information at a single click.

- Matthew Johnson, Managing Director, Tileflair

 

Tiles

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Tilespace

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Customer: Tilespace

What we did: Upgraded K8

Site link: tilespace.co.za

Challenge

Tilespace has been a customer of Kerridge Commercial Systems (KCS) since 2010. They have two branches. Tilespace offers an unrivalled selection of exclusive, imported brands specialising in tiles, sanitary ware, taps and fittings. They recently upgraded from K8.07 to Babbage.

With an executive board counting on 75 years of collective industry experience and bolstered by dedicated and experienced management and staff, the collaboration has been dynamic earning TILESPACE a highly respected reputation in the marketplace. Management’s daily hands-on approach to the business has resulted in a culture of agility, intimacy and virtuosity breeding trust amongst key suppliers and long standing clients.

Gains and benefits

  • The cashbook functionality added benefits
  • Real-time posting of transactions allowing up to date account figures
  • The new look and feel for the Babbage accounting module was a welcomed change
  • Having a web based application where they are able to login to the system and do credit limit overrides on the go
  • Data warehouse providing more in depth analysis of data

Read the full story here.

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Due to all our testing, the great team I had at Tilespace as well as Kerridge Commercial Systems, we had a very smooth Go-Live with almost zero issues.

- Bronwen Fritz, Financial Manager

 

Electrical Wholesalers

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Norbain

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Customer: Norbain

What we did: Implemented OneOffice

Site link: www.norbain.com

Challenge

Norbain SD is one of Europe’s most successful distributors of CCTV, IP video, access control and intruder detection equipment. Based in Reading, the company employs around 300 staff throughout the UK in its sales offices and at distribution centre in Manchester. Each year, Norbain SD distributes products into more than 70 countries across five continents.

Following the completion of a strategic planning process, Norbain SD identified the need to improve its warehousing and delivery functions - the hub of its business. Doing so would enable the company to achieve its current and future targets, and to meet the anticipated increased demand for high-level logistics. Norbain SD required a supply chain management system manage its stock and customer demands efficiently, and be flexible enough to support future opportunities.

Gains and benefits

  • Greater efficiency in its business processes has enabled headcount to be maintained while increasing its turnover by 30 to 40 per cent
  • By integrating with courier systems orders can be taken much later in the day and still maintain a same-day service – a real competitive advantage
  • Staff are able to focus more time on supporting customers and meeting their requirements - a real plus for customer retention in a competitive market
  • Product returns handled more efficiently – including collection arrangements and credit note issues
  • Significant capacity gains as a result of efficient use of IT across all supply chain processes – including stock planning

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

Download a K8 Brochure  

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We attribute a considerable amount of Norbain’s business success to its use of IT.

- Alun John, Managing Director

 

Tiles

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Beccles Tile Centre

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Customer: Beccles Tile Centre

What we did: Implemented K8-SBE

Site link: www.becclestilecentre.co.uk

Challenge

Beccles Tile Centre is a family-owned and managed tile, bathroom and contracting services company. Employing around a dozen staff, Beccles Tile Centre offers an extensive range of tiles and bathrooms which are on display in its retail showroom with a 20,000 square foot warehouse nearby.

Prior to installing K8-SBE, Beccles Tile Centre had been running basic systems which relied heavily on manual processes for quotations, sales, stock control and accounts. Information was lacking in detail, mistakes were often not picked up, processes were inefficient and time consuming. After reviewing a number of solutions, K8-SBE (Small Business Edition) was selected.

Gains and benefits

  • Processes are fast and effective, makes best use of everyone’s time
  • Purchasing is fully controlled – reduced risks of errors
  • Stock visibility impressive – better service to customers
  • Information is quickly accessible and accurate – no time spent searching
  • Company is trading more efficiently – less time wasted
  • Margin and profitability monitored – control and reporting supports management needs
  • Integral accounting – instant transaction processing, errors eliminated, cash flow improved
  • Easy management information and reporting – fully supports decision making

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

Download a K8 Brochure  

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The system has ended the paperchase, made it easier to trade, and has put us in a strong position to react quickly to business demands. With Kerridge Commercial Systems and K8 – SBE, this small business will continue to thrive.

- Julie Thurston, Accounts Director

 

Home & Garden

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Liffey Distributors

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Customer: Liffey Distributors

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.liffeyd.com

Challenge

Liffey Distributors is Ireland’s leading distributor of forest, garden and leisure equipment tools including Husqvarna, Oregon, McCulloch and Flymo products. The company maintains a philosophy of providing customers with high standards of support and service - an approach that has ensured successful growth since its formation in 1970.

The company’s previous system was operating at its limits. It was not scalable and development plans did not meet Liffey Distributors’ requirements. The situation was likely to worsen with further growth and the company began the search and evaluation of alternative systems. Liffey Distributors needed a ‘best of breed’, fully integrated and functionally comprehensive distribution system. A product development roadmap, system support and supplier security were also priority requirements. K8 and Kerridge Commercial Systems ‘ticked all the boxes’ and the decision was made.

Gains and benefits

  • Sales order processing – smooth and fast
  • Information at the fingertips – no delay searching and the information is accurate
  • Full supply chain visibility – purchasing, orders and sales – the value of an integrated system
  • Automated processes for sales back orders – maintains control – supports customer service
  • Perpetual inventory stock checking – saves time and money, any issues quickly identified
  • Greater financial control from integrated accounting – benefits include improved cash flow
  • Staff freed up to work on core activities – a benefit of controlled, automated processes
  • Improved management information at all levels – effective, informed decision making

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

Download a K8 Brochure  

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K8 has completely changed the way we run the business for the better. The system is everything we wanted and more.

- Ronan Brady, Operations Director

 

Bathroom & Kitchens

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Howdens Joinery

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Customer: Howdens Joinery

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.howdens.com

Howdens and Kerridge Commercial Systems – working together to build strong systems

A company that operates 642+ branches and manages 450,000 trade accounts clearly needs robust software to ensure sales are processed efficiently and inventory is managed visibly and accurately. Ten years ago Howdens Joinery chose K8, an ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) solution developed by Kerridge Commercial Systems (KCS) to replace its ageing legacy system. Since then the relationship between the two companies has evolved into a strong partnership that has seen the KCS team working closely with Howdens to help them achieve their business objectives and regular reviews to plan future strategic developments.

Howdens has a simple philosophy according to CIO Clive Cockburn. “We firmly believe that having a kitchen fitted by a trade professional is absolutely the best way of doing it. It’s a complicated process that can involve other trades like plumbing and electrical work. There can also be design changes made along the way. We’re therefore committed to providing a great service to local builders to ensure they always have everything they need in stock at their local depot, to support them as they work and to help them make money.”

Gains and benefits

  • A strong ten year partnership between Howdens and KCS
  • Fast order processing and clear visibility of stock
  • Seamless integration with Howdens' manufacturing solutions
  • A flexible system that suits Howdens' trading style and autonomous depots
  • A scaleable solution used effectively across Howdens' 642+ depots

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In terms of technical scalability K8 is ready to go from 1 depot to 600+. It can be used just as effectively by small businesses as by large operations like ours.

- Clive Cockburn, CIO, Howdens Joinery Co.

Read the full story here.

Read previous stories.

 

Builders Merchants

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Samuel Kirk

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Customer: Samuel Kirk

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.samuelkirk.co.uk

Challenge

Samuel Kirk (Builders Merchants) Ltd is a family-owned business established in 1947 employing 14 people. The company provides a full range of DIY and building supplies for trade and retail customers.

The compelling factors which led to the installation K8 included the inadequacies of the previous system. As a text –based trading and accounting system it required excessive manual intervention, stock control and management reporting was poor, and it was difficult to price products. A new system had to be easier to use. Samuel Kirk installed K8 in 2005.

Gains and benefits

  • Excellent functionality throughout the system – suits the business needs
  • Information at the finger tips – means efficiency, good service and simplifies work-flow
  • Pricing and discounts handled consistently – maintains margin, eliminates costly errors
  • Timber purchasing and sales capability – a complex area fully controlled
  • Credit account controls – few debt issues and better cash flow
  • Special orders fully controlled ensures good customer service is provided

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

Builders' Merchants eBook  

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With K8 you can tell exactly how much you are making and exactly how much you are spending. It gives you a very up-to-date picture.

- Kirk Alerdice, Branch Manager and founder’s grandson

 

Builders Merchants

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Haldane Fisher

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Customer: Haldane Fisher

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.haldane-fisher.com

Challenge

Founded in 1946, family-owned Haldane Fisher Ltd is one of the UK’s leading independent suppliers to the construction industry. Serving the trade and general public as well as operating a timber business, with fifteen branches in Northern Ireland, England and the Isle of Man.

Prior to installing K8, Haldene Fisher had several disparate systems which needed replacing. The essential requirement was for an integral solution to control the business finances and provide improvements in management information capabilities. The company also needed a system which would enable international trading – notably for the company’s timber import business. The Haldene Fisher K8 system has 200+ users.

Gains and benefits

  • K8 is easy and intuitive to use, for training, operators, to complete tasks quickly
  • Multiple open sessions – means quicker workflow – saves time
  • Better customer service - transaction processing and resolving queries
  • Electronic document management with online access – less search and access time
  • Operational and management reporting – for fast, informed decision making
  • Gross margin controls - profitability monitoring at transaction level
  • Complete control of timber machining and stock – complexities simplified by K8
  • Faster stocktaking – saves time and money, fewer issues, less operational impact
  • Cross branch stock visibility and trading processes easy and quick to process
  • Fast SL and PL reconciliations - complete control – timely attention to issues
  • An excellent ROI – reduced working capital, lower interest charges
  • Future system developments and add-on opportunities
  • Business growth easily accommodated

ASL Case Study   

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Kerridge Commercial Systems is a very professional organisation. The experience of their consultants is not to be under-estimated.

- Mary Hannaway, IT Manager

Builders' Merchants eBook  

 

Builders Merchants

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LSK Supplies

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Customer: LSK Supplies

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.lsksupplies.co.uk

Leading Scottish ironmonger prepares for the future with K8

Established in 1999, LSK Supplies is a family-run architectural ironmonger and builders’ merchant. Scotland’s largest independent architectural ironmongers, the company has six branches in west central Scotland and two more branches opening early 2016. Serving both trade and retail customers LSK focusses on delivering a positive customer experience. The company selected K8 to support future growth, opting for a cloud-based solution to minimise IT overheads.

The need for a new system

LSK’s previous system had served the business well - the software managed the core processes for selling, purchasing and stock control. However, LSK had developed and required a system that was more future-proof. The company needed an advanced, fully integrated system to improve the efficiency of its customer contact ‘touch points’ – particularly in managing transactions, invoicing and payment processing. Ryan Cairley, LSK’s Project Manager, said “Being able to take full advantage of new technologies, advanced functionality and having greater depth and breadth of information were the priorities. Financial tools, ease of use and being able to use the company’s existing infrastructure, were also key requirements for the business.”

Choosing K8

LSK Managing Director, Garry Bell, researched a number of alternative systems before choosing K8. The company understood K8’s established reputation, but after talking to businesses with K8 experience, it became clear that the system met the LSK’s requirements. “In terms of reliability, functionality and readiness to support our future growth, K8 was the best system for us. Specifically, its capabilities to present accurate and real time management information - especially sales and purchasing patterns, were significant factors in our decision. We were also impressed with Kerridge Commercial Systems (KCS) as a progressive company with proven R&D credentials.”

Successful implementation

One particular aspect of K8 that appealed to LSK was its considerable flexibility and adaptability. During the system set-up, Ryan and his colleagues took time to understand how K8 could be fine-tuned to suit the business. Early engagement and commitment certainly paid off; moreover, it gave LSK complete ownership of its new system. Complementing this was the ‘train the trainer’ approach used to introduce the system to the staff; LSK also compiled help sheets to help build user skills and competencies.

“KCS consultants were immensely helpful. They shared their knowledge willingly and guided us through data conversion Talking to us about how we would get the best from our new system, the consultants also gave us confidence to move forward leading to a smooth, successful implementation and well-supported go-live.”

Solid foundation

LSK stated that K8 has now settled in well, with some specific projects to consider in the next year or so. “The system has already done what it said on the tin in terms of improving our customer processes, operationally efficiency and productivity. Digital signature capture, for example, has been a great success with faster invoicing and fewer accounting queries.” LSK is in a particularly competitive industry and appreciates the importance of meeting customer demands. “With K8 we are already one step ahead and have the system behind us to adapt to new demands from new and existing customers,” said Ryan.

LSK implemented K8 with energy and enthusiasm – clearly a company that’s seizing the power of technology for a successful future.

Highlights

  • Flexible and adaptable solution
  • Strong user engagement
  • Successful training programme
  • Fully supported go live
  • Fewer trading issues
  • Development potential

Benefits

  • Greater efficiency and productivity
  • Improved customer processes and service levels
  • Significant gains from digital signature capture
  • Real-time management information

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

Builders' Merchants eBook  

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The system has already done what it said on the tin in terms of improving our customer processes, operationally efficiency and productivity. Digital signature capture, for example, has been a great success with faster invoicing and fewer accounting queries.

- Ryan Cairley, Project Manager, LSK Supplies

 

Builders Merchants

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F30 Building Products

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Customer: F30 Building Products

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.f30buildingproducts.co.uk

Challenge

F30 was founded in 2012 as a supplier of specialist building products such as structural waterproofing systems and brickwork and formwork ancillaries to the bricklaying and civil engineering sectors.

An accounts package at ‘breaking point’ was the driver for F30 Building Products Ltd (F30) to upgrade to K8 software from Kerridge Commercial Systems (KCS). “The program had served us well,” explained F30 Managing Director, Rob Pearce, “But it was starting to slow down and wasn’t capable of managing the volumes of data we are entering as the business grows.”

“We pride ourselves on unrivalled customer service and expert, unbiased technical advice,” he said. Based in Bristol, the company set up a second depot in Plymouth in 2016 and has already opened a second warehouse there to expand the stock profile to meet local demand. Mr Pearce said he has plans to open further branches with locations still to be confirmed.

“We looked at two other ERP systems,” he explained. “But K8 was only ever going to be the system we went forward with. Its scalability and multi-site functionality means it’s really future proof for us. I’m convinced the speed of the system and how it will give us real time information in each depot will revolutionise the business. At the moment we are processing everything including sales, purchasing and accounting at our head office in Bristol, which is frustrating for our team in Plymouth as they are unable to operate autonomously.”

“Stock control and logistics will now be managed on a local level and the branch managers can have complete control over their depots. I know they’re looking forward to this! Being able to drill down into specific data will let us produce detailed management reports quickly and easily and manage KPIs for the team, suppliers and customers. I’m also looking forward to using the K8 CRM system and being able to share and store more information effectively.”

Read the full story here.

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K8 will put us on a level operating field with the biggest names in our industry.

- Rob Pearce, Director, F30

Builders' Merchants eBook  

 

Plumbers & Heating

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Express Plumbing Supplies (EPS)

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Customer: Express Plumbing Supplies (EPS)

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.exps.co.uk

Challenge

Established in 2003, Express Plumbing Supplies began life as a small, single branch bathroom and heating supplier, based in Barrow-In-Furness, with four employees. The company has grown to become one of the largest independent bathroom, heating, drainage and renewal suppliers in the north west of England, with four branches stocking several thousand products.

By 2004, the company’s basic trading system was proving inadequate for an ambitious company. The search was on for a system more suited to the task, with the necessary flexibility and scalability. Express Plumbing Supplies needed a systems partner who understood the business with proven knowledge and a track record of experience. K8 was chosen. And the company began to enjoy the system’s benefits immediately.

Gains and benefits

  • Fast sales order processing – gives good services to customers, supported by accurate information
  • Quotations produced effortlessly – good for customers, speed means better chance of an order
  • Easy and quick to use purchase control tools – optimise stock levels with visibility of pipeline
  • Integral accounting functionality – the financial position tightly controlled, cash flow improved
  • Management information –‘at the fingertips’ supports planning and decision making
  • Central control - cross-branch visibility and inter-branch trading easily processed
  • Excellent support and system maintenance – gives re-assurance and future roadmap
  • Opportunities to introduce additional applications

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

Download a K8 Brochure  

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Migrating to K8 was one of the best business decisions I have ever made – the positive difference to the company has been phenomenal.

- Ashley Wilson, Managing Director

 

Tiles

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Tileflair

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Customer: Tileflair

Site link: www.tileflair.co.uk

K8 helps leading tile distributor, Tileflair, expand with ease and confidence

Fifty years ago, Tileflair started trading with a small team of four people in one store. Passionate about being the best at what they did, they aimed to create a first-class experience for their customers. Such vision and the desire to deliver top-class service led the company to implement K8, the market-leading ERP solution from Kerridge Commercial Systems (KCS). K8 helps busy distributors, wholesalers and retailers, like Tileflair, manage their trade and finance effectively.

Highlights

  • Sophisticated stock and logistics management
  • Scalable, easy to deploy
  • Simple to use, yet powerful order management
  • Integrated email for invoices, statements, purchase orders, etc

Read the full case study

Would you like to know more?

Discover how K8 can benefit your business and book your demo today.

Get in touch

Discrete Manufacturing

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Anglo Stainless

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Customer: Anglo Stainless

Site link: www.anglostainless.co.uk

Challenge

Anglo Stainless is a major stockholder and manufacturer of stainless steel fittings. The privately-owned company serves around 400 active customers, predominantly in the chemical, oil, gas, brewing and food sectors. From its base in West Yorkshire, Anglo Stainless is a well-established supplier in the M62 corridor and throughout the UK, with export sales planned to grow.

In 2008, Anglo Stainless realised that their computer and manual systems were no longer suitable. Duplicated effort was necessary in many areas and although checks and balances were in place, the risks of error had to be reduced to fulfil the need for accurate real-time information. Hence the need for a modern, fully functional, integrated system.

Steve Brooke, operations director said, “We had to increase productivity, make the business run more efficiently and improve traceability of every product. Without investing in IT, growth and development of our business would be much more difficult to achieve.” A key requirement for Anglo Stainless was a system that could support the company’s combined distribution and manufacturing activities - including a direct, seamless interface between the two. “We reviewed a number of alternative systems, all of which had their own particular strengths and we were then introduced to the Kerridge Commercial Systems (KCS) solution. Ticking all the important boxes, we chose K8 Manufacturing for its rich functionality for all areas of our business, including inter-company trading as standard.”

K8 Manufacturing went live in July 2009 and the benefits of giving the business much greater control, accurate management information and improved decision making tools were soon apparent. “Shop Floor Data Capture was a major gain for us – no more manual monitoring of production data. We were able to review actual versus allowed times on an exception basis – no need to check every job.”

Gains and benefits

  • Shop Floor Data Capture capability
  • Intercompany trading facilities
  • Improved decision-making tools
  • Exception reporting for cost control
  • Electronic invoice submission
  • Control of customer forward orders
  • Full product/order traceability
  • Consistent sales quotation pricing
  • Time savings allow focus on priority areas

Read the full story here.

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By introducing K8 Manufacturing there were opportunities to make better use of our time and resources which meant reducing our costs in real terms.

- Steve Brooke, Operations Director, Anglo Stainless

 

Discrete Manufacturing

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Fluid Transfer International

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Customer: Fluid Transfer International

Site link: www.fluid-transfer.co.uk

Lean principles

Based in Gloucestershire, Fluid Transfer International is a market leader in the design, development and manufacture of aviation and naval refuelling equipment – a major supplier to the Ministry of Defence and UK airports.

Implementing K8 Manufacturing in 2001–the system provides the company with complete process control from sales order through to delivery. Richard Iles-Caine, Finance Director said, “We aim to use just-in-time principles to keep inventory investment to a minimum but at the same time any delays in production can have huge implications. A refuelling truck, one of our core products, typically comprises more than 1,000 items, but only 50 or so cost more than £100. Because every order is bespoke to customer requirements, we work K8 Manufacturing hard to support the whole cycle from quotation to completion.”

The company also has to manage relatively long lead times and with vehicle chassis taking up to nine weeks to arrive from the manufacturer, a large order can take several months to deliver. “We support a combination of new and existing customers, some of whom have programmed replacement or refurbishment cycles. We also have the capability to respond quickly - a significant export order for a customer in Indonesia being delivered in just 10 weeks.”

Meeting customer needs

With such a mix of customer demands, the management team make very effective use of K8 Manufacturing and use its workflow tools to manage situations as they arise. “Manufacturing around 50 vehicle refuellers annually, as well as our other products, we appreciate the system’s versatility in being able to handle all types of purchased parts, assemblies and kits. With each order based on standard labour times and material costs, we use the system for contract reviews to compare actual data and then make any necessary changes for future orders.”

Gains and benefits

  • Complete process control for parts, assemblies and kits
  • Job bar-coding saves time
  • Accurate contract reviews
  • Dashboards aid decision making
  • Monthly accounts produced fast
  • Quick quotations boosts service
  • Configurator tool saves time
  • Fully-managed quality issues
  • Stage payments = better cash flow

Read the full story here.

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In the final analysis, keeping our finger on the pulse of company performance is key. It’s a real plus that the system enables us to publish the management accounts just three days after month end.

- Richard Iles-Caine, Finance Director

 

Discrete Manufacturing

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ADM Pressings

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Customer: ADM Pressings

Site link: www.admpressings.co.uk

Challenge

Based in Newcastle upon Tyne, ADM Pressings is a renowned manufacturer of pressings, assemblies and fabricated products for the automotive industry. ADM’s customers include Aston Martin, Bentley, JLR, JCB and Caterpillar.

The company first implemented K8 Manufacturing in 1999 and played a key role in supporting the development of the system’s management information dashboard tools.

The K8 Manufacturing system in use at ADM today is a much more advanced integrated product than the version which was first implemented in 1999. Since then, as the business has developed and newer software releases have been introduced, the system’s value to ADM has grown progressively.

In terms of overall benefit, K8 Manufacturing enables ADM to operate efficiently with tight process controls in every area. From customer contacts, enquiries, quotations and orders through to purchasing, stock control, production scheduling and despatch, the system lies at the heart of the business.

“K8 Manufacturing enables us to fully integrate our business processes and helps everyone to understand how the business operates and interconnects. We also use the system to administer our production assets for maintenance planning, inspection scheduling and repair orders. With everything flowing through to the accounting applications, K8 Manufacturing enables us to manage inbound and outbound invoicing, payables, receivables, cash-flow and payroll very effectively.”

Gains and benefits

  • A robust, integrated software platform
  • Fully supports business processes
  • A scalable system for future developments
  • An enduring, trusted partnership
  • Integrated process control sales order to delivery
  • Effective stock control and purchasing
  • Comprehensive production and resource planning
  • Integrated accounts and robust financial management
  • User-defined and maintained management dashboards
  • Real-time data for effective decision making

Read the full story here.

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K8 Manufacturing enables us to fully integrate our processes and helps everyone to understand how the business operates and interconnects.

- Andy Wingfield, Managing Director, ADM Pressings

 

Builders Merchants

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Ark Trading

Next

Customer: Ark Trading

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.facebook.com/ARKTradingNam

Challenge

Kerridge Commercial Systems (KCS) is pleased to announce that Ark Trading Namibia is live on K8. Ark Trading was established in 1980, and is one of the oldest suppliers to the building trade in Windhoek Namibia. Ark Trading stocks everything from the spade to dig the foundation to the rolling ridge for the roof, including the nails and hammer to nail it in. They also supply sand, gravel and cement, doors, window frames, paint, plumbing supplies and sanitary ware.

Paul Koster bought the business in late 2015, and the Namibian Competition Commission awarded a last minute approval to him, to start trading from the 1st January 2016. Paul wished to start trading the new business on a new ERP system. This meant that the KCS team had to work under time constraints to configure the system. They pulled it off however, and the K8 system was live at the first week of trading.

Paul has had some previous experience on the trading side of K8. He contributed by helping his staff with training and supporting them with issues, in order to ensure a smooth go-live with minimal disruption to the business.

Ark Trading is looking forward to continuing to build the business partnership with KCS, and to using K8 to grow Ark Trading.

Tiaan Grobbelaar, Sales Manager at KCS, said “Thank you for entrusting us as the IT partner for your new business, we wish you best of luck with your new venture and we are sure that your business will thrive, and that K8 will support your current and future strategies.”

Risks were mitigated due to Ark Trading:

  • Using the standard K8 printing templates, so minimum time was spent on setup and testing
  • Allocating a strong internal team designated to the the project
  • Having strong internal buy-in, and support from the staff for the new system
  • Providing accurate master file and product data, with all relevant required information e.g PAC (product analysis codes), branch files and supplier details

Gains and benefits

As a result of the K8 ERP implementation, Ark Trading will realise the following efficiencies and benefits:

  • Elimination of manual stock back-orders, more controlled and automated
  • More efficient stock forecasting, improved lead times and estimates
  • Able to manage direct deliveries on bulk building materials
  • Better Customer service
  • Better Stock tracking/management
  • Better reporting, managing by exception

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

Builders' Merchants eBook  

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I was impressed with the dedication and knowledge portrayed by the KCS team.

- Paul Koster, Managing Director of Ark Trading

 

Automotive Aftermarket

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Amex Auto

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Customer: Amex Auto

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.amexautospares.com

Challenge

The automotive after-market in Kenya is fragmented and competition comes from one-branch businesses. Amex Auto have decided to invest in K8, a sophisticated ERP system, developed by Kerridge Commercial Systems (KCS). K8 software will deliver the scalable technology they need as they grow from a small, family run business to a multi-branch operation. They are also planning to open 2 distribution centres later this year. The investment they have made in their team will also, they believe, provide a foundation to support their planned growth.

Established in 1988, the privately held company is led by husband and wife team, Sajni Shah and Devesh Patel, who are Co-CEOs. Sajni joined the company in 2013 and saw the potential to take the business to the next level. She moved the company head quarters from the town of Kisumu to the capital Nairobi and expanded to 4 branches. Over the same period of time, the team grew from 4 to 56.

K8 software will deliver the scalable technology they need as they grow from a small, family run business to a multi-branch operation.

Gains and benefits

  • Real time access to actual data and performance
  • The ability to better monitor the performance of each branch, product line and individual salespeople
  • The capability to drill down to gross margins achieved for each product

Read the full story here.

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As Co-CEO I want to support my team to learn as much as they can and build their skill set in their careers. Practical experience in a real business environment will equip a young Kenyan workforce to truly compete.

- Sajni Shah , Co-CEO, Amex Auto

 

Automotive Aftermarket

Previous

Elta Automotive

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Customer: Elta Automotive

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.lucaselectrical.co.uk

Challenge

ELTA Automotive is a major component importer and distributor based in the West Midlands and holds the UK licence for the Lucas Electrical brand. Established in 1993, Elta supplies around 2,000 motor factors and accessory shops from its central warehouse in Coleshill.

Stuart recommended K8 to his managing director because, as well as being a system that was fast and easy to use, he liked how Kerridge Commercial Systems (KCS) was a ‘one product’ company, committed to developing its core K8 solution. He was also reassured by KCS’s automotive heritage and how several large companies in the industry were already using it successfully.

Gains and benefits

  • There is now complete visibility of the supply chain.
  • Customer service is improved through fast, accurate response to stock enquiries.
  • Pick and stock adjustment errors are now minimal.
  • Reversing costs when customers return products is easy.
  • K8 helps the Elta team work faster and more efficiently.

Read the full story here.

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I know we made the right decision when we chose K8. We gained so much more functionality and now we work faster and much more efficiently.

- Stuart Poole, Product Analyst, Elta Automotive

 

Automotive Aftermarket

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FPS Distribution

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Customer: FPS Distribution

What we did: Upgraded K8

Site link: www.fpsdistribution.com

Challenge

National parts distributor, FPS, delivers goods to 2,500 customers, up to 6 times daily from its National Distribution Centre in Sheffield. Around 40,000 transactions flow through the FPS business on a typical day, so having the right ERP solution in place is critical to the success of the business.

Beyond the standard

With a long reputation for excellent customer service, FPS has been in distribution and wholesaling for over 80 years and boasts a product portfolio that now spans the Automotive, Industrial, Travel & Leisure and Retail sectors. For the past 20 years, Kerridge Commercial Systems (KCS) technology has supported the flow of FPS’ ‘life-blood’, ensuring its 1,000 strong staff can efficiently and effectively manage the end-to-end processing of all transactions across its network of 22 sites.

The KCS/FPS relationship stretches back to 1992

Following an evolutionary path through KCS’ advancing solutions from Rev.7 through to K8, an integral part of FPS’ strategy has been to keep their ERP system up to date so that the business can achieve operational efficiencies and continue to delight customers with excellent service. In 2015, FPS upgraded to K8 Babbage, complete with additional features and benefits including fewer user exits, new role-based permission facilities, and user-defined table functions.

Finance & IT Director at FPS, Jonathan Eden, explains: “Moving to K8 Babbage means that we can take advantage of Oracle ‘Red Stack’ and the new incremental upgrade architecture – both of which are important to us as we progress the system. In terms of application functionality, improvements such as the enhanced customer returns handling are already proving to be beneficial.”

Planned to perfection

Jonathan Eden knew that to deliver the large and complex upgrade project successfully, working in close collaboration with KCS would prove a critical success factor, along with strong project sponsorship from both companies, exemplary project management, and quality internal communications:

“It was imperative to keep our colleagues across our network fully informed. Telling everyone what we were doing - why, when and how - helped us to maintain strong engagement with the project. Adopting an ‘agile approach’, we carried out practice upgrade runs, timings obtained were fed into go-live planning, and expedient issue resolution helped to keep the project on track.”

A smooth transition

After significant testing from both KCS and FPS, K8 Babbage went live in February 2015. Support from both companies' IT, finance, operations and supply chain staff during the go-live and initial week of usage, resulted in a well-planned and successful transition. Jonathan Eden recaps, “Operational downtime was just 6 hours and the Sunday shift started their work seamlessly on K8 Babbage.”

The system then moved into the Early Life Support phase, which ensured that post go-live issues could be resolved effectively. “Some of our users commented that it was the best planned, communicated and executed upgrade to date.”

‘Keeping the lights on’

Delivering a high-performing, reliable system to maintain ‘customer delight’ and user productivity – or to ‘keep the lights on’ – was a key project objective. The FPS Business Systems team also met the other objectives, which were to provide excellent service to all stakeholders and to add tangible value to the business. “Moving to K8 Babbage not only meant that we stayed on track with these objectives, it was also unquestionably the right strategy for FPS. We are now positioned to take smaller incremental steps with system upgrades – a more efficient process and with a reduced change management effect.”

“With engagement, commitment and great teamwork from all stakeholders, we addressed the challenges and completed the project successfully”, concludes Jonathan Eden.

The road ahead

Following the transition to K8 Babbage, FPS has now loaded their first feature release – a small but important step enabled by the new architecture. Jonathan Eden is also now exploring the possibility of using further modules including KCS’ Delivery Management System, Datawarehousing, CRM, and Business Intelligence to drive even greater operational efficiencies.

View the FPS testimonial video.

Gains and benefits

  • Exemplary project management
  • New system architecture
  • Smooth and seamless transition
  • Latest features and functionality
  • Enhanced returns handling
  • Business Continuity fulfilled
  • More efficient upgrade platform
  • Oracle ‘Red Stack’ advantages
  • Reduced change management risks
  • Faster and leaner issue resolution

ASL Case Study   

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Moving to K8 Babbage was unquestionably the right strategy – we now have an efficient process for future upgrades.

- Jonathan Eden, Finance & IT Director, FPS

 

Automotive Aftermarket

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Allmakes 4x4

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Customer: Allmakes 4x4

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.allmakes4x4.com

Challenge

Allmakes 4x4 is a leading international trade supplier of Land Rover parts and accessories. Supplying independent specialists for over 30 years, the company can stock every Land Rover part and also offers their exclusive range of ‘Terrafirma’ accessories. Allmakes 4x4 has contracts to supply the British armed forces and agreements with government organisations and NGO’s worldwide. Since implementing K8, the system has helped to streamline business processes and create a more efficient working environment.

Time for Change

Until 2006 Allmakes were using a custom designed system, originally developed in the early 1980’s. Over the years it had been modified and expanded to meet their developing business requirements. However, as Terry Chipperfield explained, “the system just didn’t cope well with many of the things which you’d expect in a 21st century environment. There was no capability for e-business, nor the opportunity for a trade portal. It all worked on the assumption that you had plenty of time between receiving orders and shipping them. Some of the routines on the order processing side were very slow.”

Terry continued, “Also, we were finding it increasingly difficult to get the system supported. We spent time with a Birmingham based software house, to try to bring it up to date, but this proved too difficult. We specified all sorts of aspects that we wanted to see, from improved order processing through to more sophisticated stock control; we spent a lot of time on stock control. Ultimately we decided that we had to change.”

Terry added: “A significant gap in the system’s functionality, for us, was the ability to handle, pack and ship export consignments efficiently. Well over half our business is export. So we sat down with Kerridge CS and developed a suite of programmes to meet this requirement. Nine months after seeing the system for the first time, we went live with K8 on 1st October 2006.”

Trading Systems Review

Allmakes carried out a systems review in 2006. Terry explained: “We looked at a number of alternatives, but one of our major UK based customers in Devon had recently launched K8 from Kerridge Commercial Systems (Kerridge CS.) They were very enthusiastic about the software. I spent a day with them, going through the main features. I was impressed with the speed and simplicity of the order processing, and the opportunities that K8 would give us to develop our business. So we started talking to Kerridge CS.”

Online Trading

The Allmakes K8 Web Portal gives their global customer base the ability to access the K8 system in real time. The portal was developed using the standard API’s (Application Programming Interface) supplied by Kerridge CS. The innovative design of the Allmakes K8 Web Portal was developed with their customers’ specific needs in mind; reflecting the particular demands of the industry. Customers from around the world get secure, real time information on pricing, stock availability, order progress, account details and statements. Most importantly they have the ability to get full product details, including supercessions, and armed with this information, they can place orders directly into the Allmakes K8 system.

Allmakes report a significant increase in sales following the launch of their web portal. The largest order handled through the portal had 980 individual lines processed straight into the system without any manual intervention. For Allmakes, it isn’t just sales, it’s also enquiries which are handled over the internet, so the phones are quieter. Staff have more time to give to proactive selling. Internet trading developed with KerridgeCS has given Allmakes a real competitive advantage.

The Business Benefits

Since implementing K8 at Allmakes, it has helped to streamline business processes and create a more efficient working environment. Terry explains “We particularly like K8’s ability to switch from one process to another very quickly, and the fact that we can access all sorts of information and history, concurrently. We were particularly anxious to start trading over the internet. The tools to do this are provided as standard within K8.” Terry continues: “We also like the comfort that we feel, being with a major provider, who will continue to invest in the development of the product and its support.”

Gains and benefits

  • Streamlined processes
  • More efficient working
  • More proactive selling
  • Fast access to information
  • Better customer service
  • Internet trading capability
  • Significant increase in sales
  • Secure supplier partnership
  • A system for their future

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

Download a K8 Brochure  

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K8 has provided the means to bring our business forward into the second decade of the 21st century and beyond.

- Terry Chipperfield, Director

 

Automotive Aftermarket

Previous

Brookwells

Next

Customer: Brookwells

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.brookwell.co.uk

Challenge

Brookwell Supplies Ltd is a family-run business supplying the complete range of Land Rover parts and accessories. The company started trading in 1981, from Bovey Tracey on the edge of Dartmoor, and having secured a contract to supply parts to the Royal Navy in Devonport opened a branch in Plymouth. The company is now the largest independent Land Rover parts supplier in the South West supporting customers in many countries around the world.

Brookwells had reached the point where their computer system was no longer meeting the needs of the business. It lacked functionality and there was no development strategy. For Brookwells, investing in bespoke work was not an option and a decision was made to invest in a new system. After thorough evaluation, K8 was chosen, and with the guidance and support of Kerridge Commercial Systems, the implementation was completed in around 3 months from server arriving to go live.

Gains and benefits

  • Modern GUI interface ensured fast user acceptance
  • Sales order processing and search facilities – invaluable for customer service
  • Complete parts supercession records –greater control and actions taken on old stock
  • Access to the whole Land Rover database 86,000 parts – maximises sales opportunities
  • Purchasing tools – easy and flexible to use, save time and support stock optimisation
  • Tailored screens to suit operator requirements –improves productivity and operator control
  • Up-to-the-minute information always available e.g. to view orders and profitability

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

Download a K8 Brochure  

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We were delighted that no bespoke work would be required... really impressed with what K8 does for the business.

- Jeff Dowell, Managing Director

 

Retailers

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London Transport

Next

Customer: London Transport PASS (Passenger Agents Sales Service)

What we did: Implemented OneOffice

Challenge

PASS (Passenger Agents Sales Service) operates as an independent commercial trading unit within London Transport. A multi-million pound business, PASS supplies daily, weekly and monthly passes, child rate photocards and Travelcards through a network of 2,300 agents. Most agents are small newsagents/tobacconists located throughout the London Transport area covering Greater London and the Home Counties. PASS is also responsible for bulk sales of tickets to local authorities for OAPs and students as well as to large companies for their employees.

When it took over responsibilities for passes and cards, PASS found a significant difference between the physical stock of tickets in its warehouse or with agents and the recorded figures. There are some 200 different types of tickets required to cover every zone, time period and type of traveller. Since records of sales are based on a valid stock reconciliation, PASS had to undertake a full audit and revise all the records. The previous IBM System 36-based accounting system did not have the necessary capabilities and consequently PASS had to find a new system.

Gains and benefits

  • Fully integrated accounting - tight financial control of every process – more efficient and effective
  • Ticket stocks and allocations now fully controlled – saves time and saves money
  • Discrepancy error rates fallen to negligible levels
  • Sales forecasting provides management information and agent support
  • Field staff use HHDs for stocks movement recording, invoicing and re-ordering
  • Field-based operations enables fast payment collection and improved cash flow
  • Management accounts produced very soon after month end – improved management processes

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

Download a K8 Brochure  

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Together, we have developed a very efficient, fully functional, integrated ticket management system.

- David White, IT Manager, London Transport PASS

 

Electrical Wholesalers

Previous

BPX

Next

Customer: BPX

What we did: Implemented Web Builder

Site link: www.bpx.co.uk

Challenge

Established in 1965, Leicester-based BPX is a major distributor of electrical and electronic control and machinery products. The family-owned company has nine branches across the UK and employs over 120 staff. BPX selected and went live with Web Builder, the integrated online trading application, to drive their business growth.

Business need

BPX is particularly proud of providing first class service to its customers - the company offers 60,000+ products from 40 manufacturers and makes use of IT to increase efficiency and improve its customers’ experience. Managing Director, Guy Collins, explained the rationale to offer online trading, “As a starting point, it was less about meeting existing customer expectations, but focussing more on using the technology to attract new customers, in the UK and internationally.”

Web Builder

As a OneOffice user, BPX decided that Web Builder, with integrated SOP, stock and accounting capabilities, was the most effective platform for the project. Given the size of the company’s product range, it was clear that this would be a complex project for BPX. “The first priority was to understand Web Builder and the fine tuning required for our processes. Essential for us was the need to safeguard our customer relationships and therefore, unlike some distributors who use central warehousing, we wanted our system to trade online at local branch level.”

Online catalogue

System infrastructure was a key aspect of the project – a new server investment was required to ensure that the new website, carrying the online store, performed quickly and efficiently. However, the biggest challenge was the creation of the catalogue itself - it amounted to an eight person-year project. “We had to ensure that, insofar as possible, customers could access a consistent level of information across our product range - making their selections without having to phone to check specification detail. The new website went live with 35,000 products ready for our customers to buy.”

A time for change

As a 24/7 ‘shop window’, BPX acknowledges that it represents an immediate opportunity to improve services – recognising that building awareness and transaction levels will take time. Furthermore the company is preparing for some staff to migrate towards a technical advisory role - growing the knowledge base across the company will be a real asset for BPX. “The roll-out was based on introducing the online trading facilities – including back-end processes, at each branch and worked with some of our larger customers to begin with. We wanted everyone to feel confident about the processes, including back-ordering, and the added value to our services. Another key point was to re-assure customers about trading terms and credit account processes,” said Guy.

Impact of online trading

Online trading can have a big impact for a multi-location B2B distributor. Some routines are immediately automated, some job roles become more advisory with fewer repetitive tasks. BPX also believes that its customer service function will be more productive. “Going online means immediately exposing our entire catalogue to the ‘risk of sale’. As a result, we expect our breadth of stockholding to broaden and thereby increasing service levels in this ‘want it now’ era. It’s also an imperative to monitor orders closely - if a customer buys product X, but omits essential product Y, we have to respond accordingly.”

A business milestone

Unquestionably, BPX recognises the value of the opportunities as a result of investing in an online experience and equally, that as the company’s use of IT develops, customer benefits will grow. “In taking an evolutionary approach, we want to build on our reputation and improve services in a controlled manner. Our new website, with Web Builder, is positioned to be a milestone initiative for BPX,” concluded Guy.

Highlights

  • Online catalogue of 35,000 products
  • Multi-location process capability
  • Self-service – task automation
  • Improve upselling and related product offer
  • Structured introduction for online trading
  • Starting point for further online developments

Results

  • 24/7 trading facility and global shop window
  • Opportunity to extend customer base
  • Customer-branch relationships maintained
  • Improved customer service experience

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

Download a K8 Brochure  

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In taking an evolutionary approach, we want to build on our reputation and improve services in a controlled manner. Our new website, with Web Builder, is positioned to be a milestone initiative for BPX.

- Guy Collins, Managing Director

 

Electrical Wholesalers

Previous

Electro Tech

Next

Customer: Electro Tech

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.electrotechnam.com

In looking to move their business forward, Electro Tech has selected K8, the leading integrated business management solution

Electro Tech has been in operation since 1989, and is a wholesaler of quality electrical products. Their head office is based in Windhoek with branches in Prosperita, and Swakopmund.

Electro tech chose K8 because it was seen as the only system that could cater for all departments within their business. Currently Electro Tech is running three separate systems; A system for their retail department, one for their admin and another for their workshop.

The system will be hosted on premise and comprise of fifteen K8 users. Mr. Hardy Spoerer, Managing Director Says “We currently have to run multiple systems to manage the various aspects of our business. With K8, I can have one version of the truth. We will definitively also be utilizing the e-commerce product as soon as K8 has stabilized throughout the business."

Kerridge Commercial Systems (KCS) will be installing one central consolidated system across all three branches that will help manage sales margin, and improve customer service. The sales staff will be able to view stock in the other locations while dealing with the customer. K8’s central forecasting tool will help Electro Tech stock more effectively, and will reduce stockholding. Buy outs functionality will improve their customer service and management.

The integration between sales and purchase control will ensure that an item is linked to a customer so it can’t end up as dead stock in the back of the warehouse. In addition, K8’s low bandwidth true thin client technology, means that branches in Prosperita and Swakopmund can connect without installing bigger internet connections or 3rd party middleware.

Tiaan Grobbelaar, Sales Manager of KCS South Africa commented: “K8 has had a long history of success in the electrical product distribution market sector. We are confident that Electrotech will thrive on our functionality rich ERP platform. K8 excels at multi-site trading and consolidation, giving customers and decision makers a singular view of stock, sales, financials and purchasing. We welcome Electotech to our ever growing Namibian family.

About Electro Tech

Their products range from low voltage distribution switchgear, motor control products, electronic soft starters, variable speed drives, programmable logic controller to control boards and automation systems.

In addition to their product supply, they also offer the following services; electric network analysing and reporting, UPS maintenance and repair, generator set maintenance and repair, low voltage distribution board design and manufacturing as well as electrical control board design and manufacturing.

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

Download a K8 Brochure  

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We currently have to run multiple systems to manage the various aspects of our business. With K8, I will have one version of the truth.

- Hardy Spoerer, Managing Director, Electro Tech

 

Plumbers & Heating

Previous

William Wilson

Next

Customer: William Wilson

What we did: Implemented Web Builder

Site link: www.williamwilson.co.uk

Challenge

Established in 1900, William Wilson, part of Wolseley UK, is one of Scotland’s largest suppliers of plumbing, heating and bathroom products. Employing more than 250 staff and with 22 locations, the company serves local and regional plumbing and heating contractors, through to large national companies as well as private retail bathroom customers. William Wilson has been a Kerridge Commercial Systems customer since 2000.

Reviewing the future shape of the business, William Wilson recognised the growing importance of internet-based facilities. Although not yet a critical requirement, there was a clear need to offer customers the opportunity to trade online as a convenient alternative to its well-established and growing branch operations. The company looked at a number of software products and chose the Kerridge Commercial Systems Web Builder as the platform for its ‘B2B’ trade customers. In addition to developing the William Wilson trade website to provide customer facilities, the project also required some additional programming work – undertaken by Kerridge Commercial Systems. Specifically: to enable customers to buy from their chosen branch – there’s no central warehouse and also to handle the company’s appropriately comprehensive pricing and discounting structures.

In preparing Web Builder with 15,000 line items to load prior to launch, William Wilson valued the applications’ ability to handle comprehensive product information. It meant that the company is now able to provide its well-informed customers with levels of detail at least equal to that offered by many manufacturers.

Prior to going live, the company offered trade customers the opportunity to test the new online facilities and the feedback was very positive. William Wilson’s staff worked very hard to ensure their new online trading tool would be successful from the start. They are rightly proud of what they have achieved and progressively, more and more customers are appreciating the benefits of ordering online.

Gains and benefits

  • Easier for trade customers to transact
  • Real time stock detail
  • Orders can be placed for out of stock items
  • High quality content
  • Access to basic account information
  • Integration with back office systems
  • Extension of existing branch services
  • Focus on customer requirements
  • Future proofing the business

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

Download a K8 Brochure

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Our integrated online trading system makes it easy and convenient for our customers to transact with us.

- Michael Wilson, Commercial Director

 

Plumbers & Heating

Previous

Ferroli

Next

Customer: Ferroli

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.ferroli.co.uk

Challenge

Italian-based Ferroli was established in 1958, manufacturing and supplying natural gas fuelled boilers. The company now has more than 2,800 staff, and sells more than two million boilers a year, in addition to other heating, air conditioning and electrical products. In 1997, Ferroli opened its own UK distribution facility in to serve its national and independent customers.

In 2001, the management team agreed that the existing computer system’s issues and inadequacies had to be addressed and a replacement system was required. Following an assessment of the options available Kerridge Commercial Systems Revision 7 product was chosen. The decision was supported by the strength of past experience and performance of the company’s products. Just two years later, in September 2003, Ferroli moved to K8 and more recently upgraded to K8.07.

Gains and benefits

  • Opportunities to introduce best practice processes – for greater business efficiency
  • Warehouse Management streamlined processes, saves time and effort
  • Hand-held terminals – save time and resource – reduced need to use fixed point workstations
  • Access to future system releases –improves the quality of the product
  • Re-assurance of progressive product development roadmap
  • K8 - an excellent long-term investment for the company
  • Partner support helps improve productivity and generate additional cost savings

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

Download a K8 Brochure

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K8 has provided us with an excellent platform on which to grow our business. The Warehouse Management module, now part of the standard product, has dramatically increased efficiency.

- Phil Seal, IT Manager

 

Plumbers & Heating

Previous

Plumblink

Next

Customer: Plumblink

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.plumblink.co.za

Challenge

Plumblink is a leading plumbing products and sanitary ware supplier, servicing the plumbers’ trade and contract markets, as well as the insurance industry.

They have two different branch models; some of the larger stores with showrooms for the general customer, and smaller express stores aimed at the plumbers market. To support the growth, the business also had to adjust and formalise the stock distribution process.

Mr Abrahams, commented: “Kerridge Commercial Systems (KCS) SA has provided us with an excellent tool to be closer to our value chain. We have grown from nineteen branches in 2010 to sixty-eight in 2015 with the goal to open another twelve to fifteen branches in the next year.”

Seaweed McFarlane, Plumblink CEO said: “I truly believe that we have positioned the company in a well-structured and well governed business. The IT systems we introduced had very positive spin offs and visibility of all operations was enhanced. I consider Plumblink as the industry leader with systems in place to continue seeing and improving on the growth of the past five years.”

Gains and benefits

  • Greater supply chain visibility
  • Centralised control
  • Access to up-to-date management information
  • Tighter margin controls
  • Ease of opening branches
  • Better stock management
  • Low cost to support

To find out more about KCS and the products that we offer, please contact us today.

Download a K8 Brochure

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Kerridge Commercial Systems has provided us with an excellent tool to be closer to our value chain.

- Oswald Abrahams, ERP Systems Manager, Plumblink

 

Builders Merchants

Previous

RGB Building Supplies

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Customer: RGB Building Supplies

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.rgbltd.co.uk

Challenge

Established in 1850, Rawle Gammon & Baker initially traded as a timber importing business and now, with 15 sites, is one of the largest builders merchant in the South West, employing over 200 staff. The company attributes its success to its people and providing exceptional customer service.

RGB knew that they had to overhaul their IT infrastructure, only by doing so would they be able to create operational efficiencies, unavailable within their incumbent system. A fully integrated solution would improve business processes – not least of which in sales order processing, stock control and provide an comprehensive accounting system with management information tools. Scalability for growth were also important considerations. After examining various systems, Kerridge Commercial Systems was the clear winner.

Gains and benefits

  • An excellent, close working partnership
  • Tight control from fully integrated processes – saves time, saves money
  • Information at the fingertips – no time wasted looking up from other sources
  • Full stock visibility and optimisation, easily facilitated inter-branch trading
  • Functionally-rich, sales order processing – resulting in improved customer service
  • Opportunities to improve profitability from both revenue generation and cost savings
  • A scalable solution which allows the company to grow and develop

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

Builders' Merchants eBook

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Kerridge Commercial Systems has evolved from an outsourced supplier to an extension of our operation. Their solution has been a perfect fit and their people have forged the strong relationship we have today.

- Mark Gosney, Operations Director

 

Builders Merchants

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Parkers

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Customer: Parkers Building Supplies

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.helpmebuildit.co.uk

Challenge

Kerridge Commercial Systems (KCS) offers ‘cutting edge software for the merchant industry’, according to Ian Mitchell at Parker Building Supplies. Ian is Information Systems Manager at the leading independent and award winning timber and heavyside builders’ merchant.

The company was established in 1984, since when its philosophy has always been to offer high quality customer service backed up with good stock availability and an efficient delivery service. Today the company employs 280 people and trades from 25 locations across the South East.

“We have used K8 software since 2004,” said Ian. “At the time we needed to upgrade from our existing system to bring about a change of culture and KCS offered the best solution. Since then it has come on in leaps and bounds and we have continued to upgrade to the latest version each time a new version is cut.”

Gains and benefits

  • K8 upgrade means sales team can access software remotely on their tablets.
  • Web Builder will provide a portal for customers to access their accounts and print off invoices, PoDs etc
  • Parker’s now able to plan a ‘click & collect’ service for the future
  • An earlier upgrade delivered K8’s General Ledger - integrated with the trading system

Read the full story here.

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A previous upgrade in April 2015 brought about another major change to our business when we started to use K8’s unified ledgers that are integrated with the trading system, and that put us on another platform for moving forward.

- Ian Mitchell, Information Systems Manager, Parkers Building Supplies

Builders' Merchants eBook

 

Distributors

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Routeco

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Customer: Routeco

What we did: Implemented OneOffice

Site link: www.routeco.com

Challenge

Routeco is an independent, privately-owned company. Formed in 1978, it has established itself as one of the UK`s leading distributors of industrial automation and control products with a nationwide network of sales locations. Employing over 200 staff, the company has expanded by focusing on providing customers with the best choice of products from leading manufacturers from around the world packaged together with value-added services.

As the company had developed into an established industrial automation distributor, Routeco customers were expecting more support and value=added services. Part of the process was to make its MIS system more customer-orientated and flexible for the future. KPMG was employed as consultants during the discussions with the business function areas that would be affected most by a change of system.

Gains and benefits

  • Streamlined ordering process, including inter-branch trading – saves time, improves service levels
  • Future orders capability – greater control of current and future stock levels
  • Part kits functionality simplifies ordering and despatch processes – generates additional business
  • Fully integrated accounting – reduces workload and ensures accurate information for management
  • Credit control tools have improved cash flow by reducing debtor days, and in turn customer service
  • Integration of Austrian subsidiary easy and quick to complete
  • Consolidated invoicing saves time and effort

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

Download a K8 Brochure

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Features have led to an improved debtor day performance, and better customer service.

- Ian Stewart, Chief Executive Officer

 

Fixtures & Fastenings

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Olympic Fixings

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Customer: Olympic Fixings

Site link: www.olympicfixings.com

Gains and benefits

Vecta, the on-line sales analytics and CRM solution, has enabled Paul Gordon, managing director of Olympic Fixings, to spend more time managing and directing his business - rather than chasing data!

Olympic Fixings was founded in 1989 and supplies British and Irish merchants from distribution centres in Accrington and Bangor with over 3,500 catalogued and stocked SKUs. A trusted brand among electrical wholesalers, tool and plant hire businesses, builders’, plumbers’ and agricultural merchants, the Olympic product offering includes all types of fixings, drill bits and blades, cutting and abrasive products, hand tools, sealants and cleaning products. Customers are served by a 20-strong, highly experienced field sales team and can also use the company’s online catalogue that shows their own negotiated prices.

Vecta stores a company’s data in the cloud and is accessible by sales and management teams over the internet. Uniquely, it combines transactional data from a company’s ERP system with customer and contact records to deliver an instant and comprehensive picture of performance, margins and opportunities directly to desktops, tablets or smartphones.

“Our sales team were previously using manual systems to report and record their activity,” said Paul, “so effectively we had no visibility from a CRM perspective. We had recently upgraded our ERP, which enabled us to integrate with a CRM system and so we looked closely at three providers. In addition to the functionality Vecta gave us, we discovered it was also successfully integrated with another user of our ERP system and this proven link gave us extra confidence in its implementation.”

Vecta has revolutionised the ability to capture customer information at Olympic. Paul said, “Before Vecta, the only thing we knew internally about our customers was where to send their invoice! Now we have several thousand email addresses and we’ve been able to engage in direct marketing campaigns to key customer contacts where we send special offers and get orders in return! Previously the only way we sold was through direct selling from the rep, so Vecta has facilitated a more multi-channel approach.”

Results:

  • Vecta has enabled multi channel selling with direct mail campaigns resulting in orders by return
  • Managers now investigate variants themselves rather than asking colleagues to create reports for analysis
  • Vecta delivers link and upselling opportunities, as well as gap analysis and customer branch comparison data
  • Variances can be investigated quickly using Vecta’s margin report

Read the full story.

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Previously the only way we sold was through direct selling from the rep, so Vecta has facilitated a more multi-channel approach.

- Paul Gordon, Managing Director, Olympic Fixings

 

Food & Beverage

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Sarnia Foods

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Customer: Sarnia Foods

Site link: www.sarniafoods.co.uk

For success choose an ERP system that can grow with you

Sarnia Foods develops and manufactures food products for a variety of brands that, for whatever reason, are unable to take their own ideas forward into manufacturing. This allows their clients to concentrate on sales and marketing while the Sarnia team source packaging and ingredients and manage stock, production, packing and shipping. Through a direct link to some of its clients’ websites, the Sarnia team can take orders directly.

Sarnia currently produces products such as soups, sauces, juices, smoothies and vegetarian sausages and burgers. Clients also send products manufactured elsewhere to Sarnia for them to pack and ship. To keep transports costs down, the team has designed specialist packaging that keeps products frozen for 48 hours. Director, Patrick Finigan, said, “Generally we act as an extension of our clients’ business. We’re often the point of contact for their customers too if there are any issues.”

“To save us the disruption of moving again in around five years, we recently decided to take a big step and move to a much bigger factory,” continued Patrick. “Upgrading from a 3,000 sq ft site to one of 21,000 sq ft has enabled us to operate larger manufacturing, packaging and storage facilities and to keep everything on one site.”

Patrick and his business partner set up Sarnia Foods in 2013 and both had clear views about the type of software they wanted to drive the company. “We knew we wanted to work directly with a software provider, rather than a reseller, because from experience we knew this would give us more influence over the software’s future development. We also wanted a system that held all our data in one place - rather than having to resort to using tons of spreadsheets. And it obviously had to have all the functionality we needed as a food manufacturer, such as batch traceability and the ability to cope with variables – the weight of cauliflowers for example! Finally, we wanted a Cloud based system so we didn’t incur the capital costs of installing our own server or have the hassle of maintaining it and running back ups.”

When the team from Kerridge Commercial Systems (KCS) contacted Patrick to talk about K8 LV software, he thought it sounded too good to be true! “It gave us everything we needed, and I know we made the right decision,” he said. “We wanted to reduce the paper trail involved in our business and the system has allowed us to utilise scanning throughout all our processes and barcode everything as it goods in. We were able to address rotation issues and start seeing exactly what yields we were getting.”

Read the full story.

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We wanted to reduce the paper trail involved in our business and the system has allowed us to utilise scanning throughout all our processes and barcode everything as it goods in.

- Patrick Finigan. Director, Sarnia Foods

 

Builders Merchants

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Raven Roofing

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Customer: Raven Roofing

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: ravenroofingsupplies.co.uk

IT Partnership

The relationship between Raven Roofing Supplies and Kerridge Commercial Systems (KCS) goes back to 2004 when the company started to use an early KCS trading system alongside its accountancy package.

Five years later, during which time Raven opened three new branches, director Mark Applebee said, “I’m in no doubt that the results of the past five years have been partly attributable to how well we have made use of the system and our partnership with KCS.”

Today the company operates from six sites and has completed a transformation from the original contracting firm established in 1971 to a supply only business. There are now several hundred active trade accounts and customers include local homeowners and roofing contractors, large building companies and developers as well as major builders’ merchants. 65 staff are employed across branches in Twickenham, Thatcham, Basingstoke, Hawkhurst, Swindon and Crawley. “What I’m still most proud of,” said Mark, “is the day to day relationship we have with all of our customers and suppliers, no matter what their turnover is. I’m also proud of how our staff remain with us for the long term. To have been with Raven for 20 or 30 years is not uncommon!”

As the company developed further, a decision was made to move to a more sophisticated business management system with integrated accounting. “It wasn’t a given that we would stay with KCS,” remembered Mark, “and we looked at several integrated systems. But one of my colleagues had worked in merchanting, was familiar with K8 and recommended we take a look. We had further expansion plans and it soon became obvious that K8 was a system that could grow with us. And we liked the team at KCS – they were super people!”

Gains and benefits

  • An easy upgrade to K8
  • Minimal training needed for new starters
  • Signature pads are streamlining transactions
  • BI module tracks buying trends and branch performance
  • Stock levels now visible across all six branches
  • Integrated accounting offers customisable views

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

Read the full story.

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I’m in no doubt that the results of the past five years have been partly attributable to how well we have made use of the system and our partnership with KCS.

- Mark Applebee, Managing Director

 

Process Manufacturing

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NanoDiamond Products

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Customer: NanoDiamond Products

Site link: ndp.diamonds

Challenge

NanoDiamond Products (NDP), established in 2009, is a thriving and successful manufacturer of industrial diamond products.

The Irish company, based in Shannon, sells mostly to distributors in Europe, North America, India and the Far East, in addition to a small, direct customer base. Such is the nature of its products, quality has to be a given customer expectation; service levels and rapid shipment distinguish NDP and drive its competitive edge.

Prior to implementing K8 Manufacturing, NDP mostly relied on manual systems, but had reached the point where paper-driven processes were becoming too onerous given increased business volumes.

The decision was made that an integrated ERP system was required to take the business forward. Alex Engles, Process and Development Director said: “We chose K8 Manufacturing for its best fit to our requirements; a primary consideration was for a system that we didn’t have to customise to manage the specialties of our business. Going from mostly manual systems meant that we didn’t have much data to convert – it was principally a clean sheet situation for our company in terms of creating data records. What was important; at the time we employed just seven staff, was to go live without stopping the business. Many of our customers work with us on a just-in-time basis; hence uninterrupted service was paramount. Working closely with the Kerridge Commercial Systems team, which had acquired a solid understanding of our business, the implementation went well and the immediate post go-live period was well-managed.”

Gains and benefits

  • Supports specialist ‘BOM’ needs
  • Manages carat stocking/jar unit profile
  • Fully functional picking and packing app
  • Robust product/material tracking
  • Quality certification export facility
  • Supports business development needs
  • K8 was the best-fit choice
  • Successful transition from manual systems
  • Integrated and controlled business processes
  • Considerable manual effort reduction
  • No major customisation requirements

Read the full story here.

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Since implementing K8 Manufacturing, we have doubled our staffing and have a much more stable business to develop.

- Alex Engles, Process and Development Director, NanoDiamond Products

 

Builders Merchants

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Lawsons

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Customer: Lawsons

What we did: Upgraded K8

Site link: www.lawsons.co.uk

Gains and benefits

The Lawsons Group operates 17 branches across London and the South East. The family owned company specialises in the supply of building materials, timber and loft conversion products. Jeremy Norris, Commercial Director, has been with the group for 22 years.

“We strive to provide the best equipment we possibly can for our staff - from the trucks they drive to the IT systems they use,” he explained.

K8 processes around 3,000 transactions each day for Lawsons and manages 8,000 customer accounts. The company was one of the earliest users of the software and switched to the system in 1999 when its previous provider couldn’t guarantee ‘year 2K’ compliance. The initial 40 user system has grown and there are now 190 K8 users across 17 sites. The IT team always upgrades to the latest version of the software as soon as it’s available.

“I can’t understand why anyone wouldn’t upgrade.” said Jeremy Norris. “Firstly staff using the system have a level of expectation – they don’t want to work with green screens. Secondly there’s the business need. By upgrading we can always stay at the leading edge and make the most out of any new functionality. The latest version of K8 lets us produce management accounts with critical information - such as how much profit we’re making at each branch on a daily basis - in the fastest way possible.”

The last K8 upgrade also delivered two key features for Jeremy. The first being PCI (Payment Card Industry) compliant chip and pin integration that will replace non-integrated PDQ machines. All card transactions can be processed directly in K8 using PODS that read the cards - leading to tighter security of transactions, fewer typing errors and quicker authorisations from the banks.

Another feature is K8’s new transport delivery management system that will deliver significant improvements in the operation of Lawsons’s fleet. Jeremy explained, “With two thirds of our £80M business turnover being delivered, we generate a lot of paperwork with the potential for mistakes. Our drivers will now be able to capture customer signatures on a hand held device and make any adjustments pertaining to the materials delivered, cutting out the paperwork and updating the system instantly with the correct details.”

Read the full story here.

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The whole process went very smoothly. We handed the old system over on Saturday lunchtime and Kerridge Commercial Systems delivered the upgraded version on Sunday. The whole experience was simple, painless and positive!

- Jeremy Norris, Commercial Director, Lawsons

Builders' Merchants eBook

 

Builders Merchants

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Lawsons

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Customer: Lawsons

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.lawsons.co.uk

Challenge

Lawson and Son Timber Merchant began trading in 1921. Over the years, the company has progressively developed its product range to match market needs and customer demands – loft conversion being one particular speciality. With more than 90 years of successful trading and growth , award winning Lawsons now operates thirteen branches in and around London – a number of which supply a full range of building materials in addition to timber and fencing.

Following successful business growth, system reviews and an evaluation of other ERP solutions, the company chose to stay with Kerridge Commercial Systems and migrate from the well-established Revision 7 platform to K8. Confidence in the system and fully supported by the Kerridge Commercial Systems team, K8 was implemented at all branches in a ‘big bang’ approach.

Discover how our customers are winning with K8 Web Builder.

Gains and benefits

  • Easy to use, convenient solution
  • Inter-branch trading capacity
  • Accurate reporting and management information
  • Quick and efficient automated processes
  • Presents a more proffesional image to customers
  • Installation is straightforward, minimal user training

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

Download a K8 Brochure

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Have worked with Kerridge Commercial Systems for many years and enjoy a strong working relationship.

- Jerry Norris, IT Director

 

Process Manufacturing

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Hargreaves Foundry

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Customer: Hargreaves Foundry

Site link: www.hargreavesfoundry.co.uk

Challenge

Hargreaves Foundry specialises in the manufacture and distribution of cast iron products. Having diversified and expanded its products to service customers’ changing requirements, the company implemented K8 Manufacturing to take the business forward.

Focussing on the system’s most tangible benefits, customer service features strongly for Hargreaves Foundry. Being able to process orders from national customers with multiple points of delivery, into a single invoice point, is a major time saver. Likewise, accommodating line by line discount structures also ensures accurate pricing. “Stock holdings have been reduced by around 17% - with greater visibility, demand forecasting and max/min functionality. Lead times on standard items have also been shortened by at least two days; made possible by having two months’ supply of finished goods available in the picking area - replenished from bulk storage. With improvements in stock record accuracy, our ‘on time in full delivery performance’, which we were unable to properly measure before, is up from around 95% to over 99%.”

Gains and benefits

  • Business growth and development
  • Efficiency improvements identified
  • Comprehensive process review
  • Swift user acceptance
  • Greater functionality
  • More efficient SOP
  • Better customer service
  • Reduced stock holding
  • Demand forecasting
  • Improved management info
  • Supporting future needs

Read the full story here.

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Stock holdings have been reduced by around 17% - with greater visibility, demand forecasting and max/min functionality.

- Helen Thornber, Group Finance Manager, Hargreaves Foundry

 

Timber Merchants

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I.J.K Timber Group

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Customer: I.J.K Timber Group

Site link: www.ijktimber.co.uk

Client Focus

I.J.K Timber Group, a timber company operating from two sites in Northern Ireland, is about to implement K8 software from Kerridge Commercial Systems (KCS). The Belfast and Dungannon based company imports and distributes softwood and hardwood as well as constructional and decorative panel products.

Trading as Irvin & Sellers, Keizer Venesta and Northern Hardwood in the Irish market, the team completed a management buy-out in May 2004 from their previous owners - who bought the companies from Meyer International in 1991. Today they supply kitchen manufacturers, joinery works, builders’ merchants, shop fitters, furniture manufacturers and builders.

The I.J.K team decided to upgrade to K8 because their existing, ageing system lacked the functionality they needed for stock management and reporting. “Our existing system was causing us to do too many workarounds in order to get the management information we needed to make better decisions,” said Managing Director, Graham Knox. “We liked K8 because of its ability to deal with timber lengths and widths and the fact it had an integrated financial package. We’ll also be using the CRM, warehouse management and delivery scheduling functions within K8 and are looking forward to working with the KCS team to integrate our hardwood tally devices into the system.”

Graham believes once K8 is in place he’ll be able to enhance customer service levels through the simplified sales order process which will deliver a shorter lead time between receipt of orders and deliveries. “Some of K8’s features will be new to us as a business, such as automated order confirmations and automated purchase forecasting. And, because we’ll be able to access product information much faster and be able to streamline and simplify many of our existing processes, I’m confident we’ll soon see efficiencies.”

Graham said he’s been impressed with the KCS team who are very knowledgeable about the timber industry. “They were really interested in understanding how we like to do business and I’m looking forward to a smooth transition to the new system.”

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We liked K8 because of its ability to deal with timber lengths and widths and the fact it had an integrated financial package.

- Graham Knox, Managing Director, I.J.K Timber Group

Read the full story.

 

Builders Merchants

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Trading Depot

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Customer: Trading Depot

Site link: www.tradingdepot.co.uk

Gains and benefits

Trading Depot, the online trading sister company to Grant & Stone, offers more than 48,000 product lines to a loyal and growing customer base who maintain its ‘excellent’ rating on Trustpilot, the online review community. The company supplies plumbing and electrical products, sanitaryware, flooring, PVC windows and doors, some heavyside materials such as paving and more than 30,000 tools.

“We’re seeing huge growth,” said Trading Depot General Manager Darren House. “While around 70% of our customers are homeowners, the remaining 30% are tradesmen who are happier shopping in an online environment today than they were 10 years ago. Although we don’t offer trade accounts, we offer a choice to builders who are looking for a keener price and are happy to wait a day or two for their delivery. We also offer a click and collect service from our warehouse. I like to think there’s a traditional merchant feel about the business as we offer great customer service including technical support over the phone at pre-purchase stage.”

At the front end of Trading Depot’s business is a Magento eCommerce platform that interfaces directly with their ERP system - K8 - a solution developed by Kerridge Commercial Systems. As each order is placed, the data is drawn into K8 and, if the product is in stock, a pick note is automatically produced in the warehouse and data sent to the labeller ready to print.

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Turnover has doubled in the seven months since K8 was implemented and, although I can’t put that all down to K8, there’s no way we could have managed the current level of business using the old system.

- Darren House, General Manager, Trading Depot

Before going live on K8 in April 2017, the team at Trading Depot had to manually re-key orders in to their legacy ERP system. “It was a really cumbersome process,” said Darren. “We used to print out the orders from Magento and, while one member of staff spent all day re-keying them into the old system, another used to type out the labels! We were working on two totally separate systems and only able to process around 50 – 80 orders each day. Plus, there was a high risk of making errors when retyping postcodes and product codes etc. We upgraded for a short while to exporting orders from Magento on CSV files every couple of hours, and then importing them to the old system. But the process wasn’t reliable so we still printed them out and cross-referenced them manually!”

When Darren joined Trading Depot from sister company, Grant & Stone - which was implementing the K8 system across the group – a demo from KCS showed how upgrading to K8 could totally automate sales order processing. And, he was able to protect the investment Trading Depot had already made in Magento using K8’s Magento plug in. (Companies with no existing eCommerce platform can take advantage of KCS’s Web Builder when they implement K8. It’s a responsive eCommerce suite that enables the fast deployment of fully integrated online trading and a B2B online customer portal.)

The benefits were immediate. As orders come in from Trading Depot’s website or the company’s Amazon or eBay shop, they are automatically drawn into K8 and a pick note for goods in stock is processed with no human intervention. If part of the order is direct, a member of staff briefly intervenes to instruct K8 to send that part of the order directly to the supplier. On the old system the team had to type a separate email to the supplier along with the re-keyed customer information.

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We didn’t lose a single day’s business as we went live on K8, and because the system is really intuitive and we have a young, computer savvy team, we needed minimal training.

- Darren House, General Manager, Trading Depot

“Now that our Magento platform interfaces with K8, customers can see an accurate reflection of our stock levels,” explained Darren. “So many websites tell customers that products are in stock when in fact they’re not. This annoys customers who only find out after they’ve placed their orders, and end up waiting lengthy delivery times rather than risking not getting a refund. We like being straight with our customers and can now confidently show the actual stock position on around 80% of stock in our warehouse or held by manufacturers and other third party suppliers - and we’re working on increasing this figure.”

This new confidence has also enabled Darren to make shipping more profitable because knowing something is definitely in stock means he can offer and charge more for a premium next day delivery service. K8 also allows Darren to take advantage of ‘buy 10’ deals because purchasing and sales can be set up separately - unlike on the old system.

Further significant cost savings have been made from not having to replace the three staff lost due to natural wastage since the implementation of K8. “The business is now so streamlined we don’t need to replace them,” he said. “In fact turnover has doubled in the seven months since K8 was implemented and, although I can’t put that all down to K8, there’s no way we could have managed the current level of business using the old system.”

Read the full story.

 

Builders Merchants

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Tadhg O’Connor Ltd

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Customer: Tadhg O'Connor Ltd

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.tocfurniture.ie

Gains and benefits

Limerick based Tadhg O’Connor Ltd, one of the larger stores in the Topline group, is about to implement a new ERP system provided by Kerridge Commercial Systems (KCS). The family owned business operates two builders’ merchant branches and a furniture store.

Business is split 50/50 between trade and retail customers and there are more than 600 trade account customers.

Managing Director, Eoin O’Connor said, “We’re successful because our staff offer excellent service and our customers know they can rely on us having the right stock delivered in a timely fashion in perfect condition and at good value.”

The 12-year-old computer system currently used by the company lacks the functionality to bring the business up to the level where Eoin wants it. “One of our guiding principles is to make our customers’ lives easier,” he explained, “and we want to be able to provide them with an eCommerce platform where, not only can they log in and place orders on line and get the same prices they would at the trade counter, but also have the ability to access their invoices, proof of deliveries, open quotations and standard orders etc.”

Client Focus

  • One of the larger stores in the Topline group
  • Business is split 50/50 between trade and retail customers
  • Family owned business operates two builders’ merchant branches and a furniture store

Eoin was also looking for better stock visibility, seamless sales processing (with back to back purchase ordering for specials), greater accuracy with purchasing and tighter margin control. He explained, “We wanted a system that allows some flexibility over what level of discount can be given so we can manage our margin better and increase profitability. Once we’re live on the system I believe K8 may help us achieve up to a 1-2% increase.”

K8 was also chosen because the sales team liked its look and feel. “We also felt that KCS were delivering a more bespoke solution with the potential to give us more flexibility than some of the more widely used systems in our industry,” said Eoin.

The field sales team will be able to access the full system remotely and an ePOD module will allow Eoin’s drivers to capture proof of delivery signatures ‘on glass’. A suite of fully integrated reports will automatically deliver the most important KPIs to the staff who need them.

“Six months after we go live we plan to start online trading, and our goal is for 20% of business to come through that channel within 12 months. Our builder/plumber customers will be able to place orders in the evening rather than having to stop work an hour early to come and see us. With K8 not only will we have better functionality around sales, stock control, purchasing and credit control, the potential of having an online platform is also now within our reach.”

Read the full story.

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We wanted a system that allows some flexibility over what level of discount can be given so we can manage our margin better and increase profitability.

- Eoin O’Connor, Managing Director, Tadhg O’Connor Ltd

 

Timber Merchants

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Nordstrom Timber

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Customer: Nordstrom Timber

Site link: www.nordstromtimber.co.uk

Client Focus

Nordstrom Timber is the largest independent timber merchant in the City of Sunderland. Established in 1953 by Herman Nordstrom, the company has grown steadily since then through the leadership of Herman’s son, Alan, and more recently Alan’s son and daughter, David and Lynne.

The company supplies both trade and retail customers from a large site in Hendon. A vast range of timber including C24 grade carcassing, dressed timbers, sheet materials, skirtings and mouldings is stored in one of two warehouses alongside the trade counter, a hardware showroom and a complete showhouse displaying kitchens and bedrooms, doors, windows and staircases. A second warehouse accommodates a joiner shop for the production of bespoke joinery and a machine shop where original interiors for heritage projects can be matched. Recently the company supplied all the interior joinery, including the hardwood paneling, used in the restoration of Sunderland’s Roker Pier Lighthouse.

“We’re most proud of our staff,” said General Manager, David Nordstrom. “Most of them have been with us for several decades and have great knowledge and expertise of our trade. We’re determined to stay on top of what we do and our customers know they can rely on us for good service and good quality materials that are responsibly sourced.”

The Nordstrom team decided to upgrade to an integrated ERP system from Kerridge Commercial Systems (KCS) as the accounting system they had used for 25 years to manage trade and financial accounting lacked the functionality to make the business more efficient. Office manager, Denise Corah, said, “K8 will give us a full overview of the business all in one place. It will be easier to see what is and isn’t selling and we’ll have full visibility of stock so won’t need to leave the trade counter or call customers back when they enquire about availability. It will make us more profitable too as we’ll have better control over our margins.”

David Nordstrom added, “We’ve been using a hand written manual till system for sales on the trade counter which means if the order has to be processed by a couple of different departments it leaves an opportunity for errors . Also with our joiner shop being in a different building, when K8 goes live across the business we’ll be able to use the Works Order module to relay information and orders more efficiently as well as making sure we’re earning a profit on every job.”

David and his team were introduced to K8 by one of their major suppliers who also use it to manage their business. He said, “We spent the day with them which was a valuable reference. After we’ve gone live, we’ll be able to start using different parts of the system such as suggested ordering and delivery management as we’re ready to. Another reason for choosing K8 was its Web Builder online trading platform which we will use in the future.”

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When K8 goes live across the business we’ll be able to use the Works Order module to relay information and orders more efficiently as well as making sure we’re earning a profit on every job.

- David Nordstrom, General Manager, Nordstrom Timber

Read the full story.

 

Distributors

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J Handford and Son

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Customer: J Handford and Son

What we did: Implemented K8-SBE

Site link: www.jhandford.co.uk

Challenge

J Hanford & Son is a family-run business establised in 1880. The company prides itself on being able to offer a professional and efficient service, from initial pricing and advice to reliable and competent deliveries. J Handford & son are one of the few aggregate suppliers in the area who make deliveries directly from their suppliers to their customers.

The company’s previous system had reached the end of the road, it was slow and most processes were carried out manually. One of the challenges was choosing a system which staff would adapt to easily and having contacted Kerridge Commercial Systems, K8-SBE was chosen.

Gains and benefits

  • Implementation completed on time, on budget
  • Easy-to-use integrated functionality, saves time and effort
  • More efficient working environment improves customer service
  • Faster purchase order processing – less effort, saves time
  • Automated processes e.g. direct fax capability – saves time and effort
  • Credit limit monitoring at point-of-sale – tight control of debt
  • Month-end processing is faster, easier and more accurate, quicker reporting

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

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Month End processing is a lot quicker, easier and more accurate.

- Colin Whittington, Sales Manager

 

Bathrooms & Kitchens

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JHC Hardware

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Customer: JHC Hardware

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.jhchardware.com

Challenge

Established in 1968, family-run JHC Hardware is a trade supplier of kitchens, bedroom, shop-fitting and DIY products. The company has continued to expand and acquired tools and equipment distributor RG Laughlin and Sons in 1998. JHC Hardware holds an extensive range of products in its well-stocked 70,000 sq.ft. warehouse with daily deliveries by its own transport fleet.

Having made the decision to upgrade its computer system, the search began for suitable systems for both companies. A new system had to support a high standard of customer service and deliver effective management information. A secure IT partner supplier was essential and the system had to be able to support future growth. After rigorous reviews of candidate systems, K8 was selected.

Gains and benefits

  • A fully integrated trading and financial system
  • Comprehensive and flexible functionality- means tight process control
  • Sales order processing – effective and efficient for high quality customer service
  • Integrated ecommerce trading – opportunities to generate additional business at minimal cost
  • Personalised catalogue information to suit customer needs
  • Price changes easily managed – maintains margin control – protects profitable trading
  • High standard of partner support - complete reassurance
  • A secure long term investment as K8 develops, further benefits will be secured

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

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The possibilities with K8 are endless with new things, better ways and more opportunities to improve the business. Kerridge Commercial Systems and K8 is the right combination for us.

- Eamonn McNeill, IT Manager

 

Builders Merchants

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Turnbull Building Supplies

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Customer: Turnbull Building Supplies

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.turnbullsonline.co.uk

Challenge

Turnbull Building Supplies was established in 1895 as a single branch, family-owned business in Lincolnshire. Now with six branches and following a management buy-out in the 1984, the company offers a comprehensive product range of building materials, kitchens, bathrooms and tiles. The company supplies retail customers through to the national house builders – the majority of its business is with from small to medium-sized builders.

During a previous systems review, Turnbull Building Supplies, considered the Revision 7 product but implemented an alternative solution. Later, with issues such as product development, scalability and functionality becoming a concern, it was time to take another look. Considerations such as capacity, culture, resources, reputation and product roadmap were the priorities. Kerridge Commercial Systems and K8 met the company’s requirements and in March 2003 an order for K8 was placed – the system went live later the same year. Turnbull subsequently upgraded to K8.07.

Gains and benefits

  • User Interface quick and easy to navigate
  • Sales order processing makes for quick and efficient trading
  • KPI facilities enable accurate, regular monitoring of business progress
  • Spreadsheet interface – great for managing price updates and stock effectively
  • Automatic supplier invoice verification – very efficient and saves time
  • Hosted platform means security, scalability with minimal add-on investment
  • System hosting means staff can focus attention on the business and customer service
  • High levels of customer service achieved using K8, means higher customer retention

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

Builders' Merchants eBook

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K8 is a well-packaged product with all of the functionality of a windows-based system and an impressive user interface. It has some fantastic features - SOP for example is superb.

- Kevin Coombs, IT Manager

 

Builders Merchants

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MKM Building Supplies

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Customer: MKM Building Supplies

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.mkmbs.co.uk

Challenge

Prior to implementing K8, MKM used a system that had come to the end of its life. The company needed to move to a modern, fully integrated and scalable system that would enable the business to expand and move forwards. MKM sought to partner with a company that understood their sector and who they could engage with for focussed product development.

Based in Hull, MKM Building Supplies is the UK’s largest independent builders’ merchants. Established in 1996, the company, which continues to grow, currently operates 40 branches across the UK, serving in excess of 25,000 customers annually.

David Kilburn, who founded the company, had previously used Kerridge Commercial Systems products, and in 2006, when the need arose to replace MKM’s text-based system, K8 was shortlisted as a prime contender. The system was first configured to run 18 branches and now has around 500 users.

In addition to K8’s established reputation as a class- leading solution for the sector, one of the big plusses in moving to K8 was that MKM could have all the requisite functionality in a standard system without the need for bespoke modifications. Furthermore, as a result of using a hosted platform in place of an in-house server, the MKM IT team have been able to take care of branch-level operator training as well as local application support. It has been an important factor in MKM’s development knowing that the system’s infrastructure is being well looked after 24/7.

K8 has proved itself capable of supporting the company’s principles of delivering high quality customer service. It has meant that the ‘stake-holding’ branch managers can use the system to suit their local requirements, while at the same time maintaining central control. K8, which MKM’s technical team have fine-tuned in a number of key areas, has helped the company to grow so successfully in a short period of time.

Receive 5 tips on how to update your warehouse and stock efficiently.

Gains and benefits

  • Branch roll-out template
  • Recommended order facility
  • Excellent stock control tools
  • Supports customer service goals
  • Effective financial controls
  • Robust credit chase processes
  • Tailored workplace dashboards
  • K8 electronic forms and documentation
  • Scalable platform for future development

ASL Case Study

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K8 provides a highly stable platform which allows us to successfully transact business with virtually no downtime or operational difficulties.

- Edward Broderick, IT Manager

Builders' Merchants eBook

 

Distributors

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Dickson Bearings and Transmissions

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Customer: Dickson Bearings and Transmissions

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: dicksonbearings.com

90 years in business, 30 years with Kerridge Commercial Systems

Dickson Bearings and Transmissions (Dickson); a third generation company, is one of Ireland’s leading distributors of industrial parts. Based in Dublin, Dickson are particularly proud of their heritage and customer service track record. Kerridge Commercial Systems (KCS) users since 1986, the company considers K8 an essential business tool; progressively developed and fully supported.

Setting the scene

With an inventory of 150,000 part lines, managing the correct depth and breadth of stock is key to Dickson’s operations. Across Ireland, more than 2,000 businesses rely on Dickson for high quality service, backed by technical expertise and experience. With the majority of customer orders relating to equipment breakdown; time is of the essence to have the correct parts on site without delay and for repairs to be carried out.

K8 working hard

Initiated by the purchase of some second-hand Wang hardware in the mid-1980s, Dickson became a KCS customer by a slightly unorthodox route. Since then, the company has grown considerably in terms of both customer base and product range. In parallel, Dickson has taken its systems forward through major releases; upgrading to K8 in 2007. Joint Managing Director, Ian Dickson, refers to K8’s role in the company: “Without K8, we wouldn’t have a business; the system is reliable, works well and easy to use. Compared with other systems we have seen, being able to navigate quickly between modules and applications is fundamental for us. As a small company, we only have 14 users; it’s vital that our sales staff can create and process orders quickly and seamlessly. Moreover, we appreciate that time is money for our customers and responsiveness is critical. The fact that K8 is used by several major companies in our sector is particularly reassuring.”

Finger on the pulse

In its fast-moving business Dickson uses K8 to keep a close watch on all the key metrics. The system’s dashboard presentation shows the latest sales order situation, revenue and profitability. “K8 holds a wealth of information that we can use to run daily operations and drive the business forward. We can see a snapshot of day-by-day and monthly sales with margin performance at any time - the Advanced Analysis tools are essential to keep us informed. Our field sales team also have access to a web-enabled detail report to keep them in touch with what’s going on. If they are going to see a customer, they are well briefed with the latest information from K8.”

Future plans

Dickson are certainly looking to the future, pushing forward with their use of K8, to improve efficiencies and drive profitable trading. “Our business has grown organically over the years, we manage our stock by adding to existing product and introducing replacements as the demand for older items falls away. K8 supports our purchasing; what we need, manage our pricing structure and although it’s not an exact science, there’s forecasting detail at our fingertips. It’s good to see new K8 developments coming through and that give us confidence for our future,” said Ian.

Highlights

  • Essential business tool
  • Progressive upgrades
  • Proven and reliable software
  • Easy to use and navigate
  • Supports customer services

Results

  • Enables ‘finger on the pulse’
  • Tight stock control disciplines
  • Aids efficient purchasing
  • Effective pricing management
  • Powerful advanced analysis
  • Accessible dashboard detail
  • Platform for development

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

Download a K8 Brochure

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K8 holds a wealth of information that we can use to run daily operations and drive the business forward.

- Ian Dickson, Joint Managing Director

 

Electrical Wholesalers

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SA Tool (Pty) Ltd

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Customer: SA Tool (Pty) Ltd

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: satool.co.za

Challenge

Established in 1983 as a power tool repairer, Johannesburg-based SA Tool are agents and distributors for many leading brands of power tools and personal protective equipment. In addition to importing products from international suppliers, the company also has purchasing arrangements with major South African manufacturers. SA Tool holds an extensive range of stock and is proud to offer competitive pricing and deliver a high standard of service to its growing customer base.

Prior to implementing K8, SA Tool had used a number of systems which had been progressively outgrown. The management team realised that a fully integrated ERP solution, better suited to SA Tool’s diverse trading requirements, had become a strategic priority. Better control and visibility over the entire supply chain was increasingly critical, especially with some transactions, such as buy-outs being managed manually. The company chose K8 – which went live in October 2011, because its extensive range of advanced, integrated functionality were a close match for SA Tool’s requirements. The system has enabled accurate traceability across sales, procurement and financial modules which are making a big difference to company operations. K8 is also helping SA Tool to improve customer service levels; through tighter inventory controls and purchase forecasting, the company is able to offer a much enhanced depth and breadth of stock. A recent development for SA Tool has been to move its K8 system to a hosted environment. With the system being supported by Kerridge Commercial Systems and the infrastructure fully managed at the data centre, the company is now able to spend much more time on operational requirements and develop its use of K8.

Gains and benefits

  • Improved business control in every area
  • Intuitive functionality
  • Time savings – resulting in greater efficiency
  • Greater supply chain visibility
  • Eliminated manual, off-system processes
  • Comprehensive transaction traceability
  • Profitability and margin monitoring
  • Superior stock management
  • Purchase forecasting
  • Website trading integration
  • Integrated BI capabilities
  • Fully supported hosted platform
  • Future-proofed product development
  • Quality partner support

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

Download a K8 Brochure

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K8 has enabled us to implement best business practice.

- Len Jacobs, Supply Chain Manager

 

Distributors

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Voltex

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Customer: Voltex

What we did: Implemented K8

Site link: www.voltex.co.za

Challenge

Voltex is a leading stockist and distributor of a vast and comprehensive array of electrical and related materials on the African continent and has 76 strategically located outlets in South Africa, catering to the needs of the electrical industry including general electric products, energy and power services, power distribution, lighting, industry and related activities.

In addition to general outlets, a number of specialised divisions which supplement and enhance, directly and in directly, its reach into the areas in which it operates. These specialised divisions include Voltex Lighting, Waco, Cabstrut, Atlas Cable Supplies, Versalec, LSis and Sanlic.

To find out more about the solutions that we offer, please contact us today.

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The system has integrated our trading branches to enable efficient inventories to meet customer demands.

- Eric Immermann, Financial Director

 

Kerridge CS demonstrated its latest innovative products to delegates at its Konnect Ireland event

Konnect Ireland news

On May 5th Kerridge Commercial Systems, a global provider of ERP solutions, welcomed over 85 delegates to its Konnect Ireland customer conference.