Order Processing Software: Part 2

18 November 2013

In part 1 of the article we looked at the principal reasons our clients mention when asking us to help them with their Sales Order Processing software.

In part 2 we begin to expand on these reasons and examine specific examples.

Business processes

Probably the largest single issue reported to us by our clients when they approach us to help them with their order processing software. There are dozens of examples we could recount here, but below are 2 which are typical.

Spreadsheet overload

Our client was a local businessman who owned and managed a UPVC replacement window company (which he has since sold). Initially he had done all the specification and selling himself, and developed specification sheets which he completed on an evening and gave to his factory manager the following morning.

He kept track of progress through a series of separate spreadsheets, regularly emailed between himself, his factory manager and his operations (installations) manager. At the point where he contacted Triangle, he was working 80 hour weeks, was firefighting issues as they arose, and his business was profitable.

The 'final straw' which caused him to contact us was that he had tried to expand by taking on a salesman to visit new customers and take the specifications of the windows, provide a quotation and submit the works order to the factory. This straw was the one which broke the camels back! The salesman had less experience that the owner and missed the "gotchas" that the owner would have picked up.

The workload of the owner, combined with his lack of systems and procedures meant that these problems were not picked up until the installers got to site with the manufactured windows - much too late to fix the problem without expensive re-manufacturing.

Sales (and picking) errors

Our client, Ozmo music group, is a retail & wholesale  supplier of music CD's and DVD's. We had written software for different parts of their business previously, but on this occasion, they had a particular requirement to reduce errors in their sales order processing department.

Their customers were both wholesale and retail, and the products on their stock list were confusing to the sales clerks (and picking staff) as several different products could share the same name and even artwork with only the serial number differentiating them. Additionally, some products had to have a barcode change (with a sticker applied at the distribution stage), dependant on the customer. Finally, the same product had different selling prices dependant on the customer.

The rules were complex, and without a comprehensive software solution, caused unacceptable errors in processing sales orders.

We will look at Triangle's solutions to these and other issues in later posts, in the meantime if you recognise any of these issues and would like to improve your sales order processing, contact us now on 01477 571 940. To leave us a message, or view our contact information click here.