Monday, February 18, 2013

Striking a Balance

“Striking the perfect balance between achieving operational efficiency while maintaining customer satisfaction and reducing costs is an ongoing challenge facing all companies,” said Pete Zimmerman, manufacturing segment manager of VAI. “Kwik Goal is ahead of the curve in terms of implementing streamlined and cost-effective manufacturing processes.  We are proud that Kwik Goal has been using S2K Software for nearly 20 years to grow its business, minimize costs and maximize profitability, and this is evidence of their commitment to customer excellence.”



There may not much need to read further if customer satisfaction is not part of your company’s goals.  Everyone in the Enterprise Resource Management (ERP) solution arena, including me, is talking about operational efficiency, reducing costs and increasing profits.  After all that is one of the chief reasons for implementing or changing/upgrading what you are using now. 

What only a few in the industry are keying in on is the concept that without happy customers an efficient operation is relatively worthless.

The result for Kwik Goal with VAI is that they have automated and integrated operations across all key functions including accounting, inventory and warehouse management, order fulfillment and distribution.  This has resulted in reducing costs, saving time and improving overall customer service.

Do you think their customers appreciate the effort?  Would you, if you were their customer?  What about your customers?

“We needed an ERP solution that seamlessly integrated within our existing IT infrastructure and enabled us to scale as our business grows,” said John Huhn, manager of information services, Kwik Goal. “With VAI’s S2K Software, we have a system that allows us to have complete visibility and control of our entire business processes including inventory, ecommerce, order tracking—which in turn, enables increased up-selling and overall sales. Our partnership with VAI has been a success from day one and we’re looking forward to further developing this relationship.”

The more fully integrated your solution the better communication and efficiency of operations. 

Imagine your brain separated.  Left brain, right brain.  In the 1960s, there was no other cure for people who suffered from a special kind of epilepsy than by cutting off the connection, corpus callosum, between the two hemispheres.  After surgery the patients were able to lead a somewhat normal life, but often it resulted somewhat odd behavior. 

How effective would your operations be if none of your departments talked to one another.  How “odd” would that be?

As a result, Kwik Goal has realized significant business benefits from this installation including:
 •Reduction of Human Error, Manual Processes and Employee Resources.
 •Rapid Implementation.
 •Seamless Integration of VAI S2K.
 •More Efficient and Up-to-the-minute Inventory Management.
 •Integration with Varsity Shipper for International Shipping.

I am a real fan of any process improvement that reduces manual processing. 

I remember talking to a friend about his business several years ago.  I was asking about how his systems talked.  He said that he was actually in the process of building an interface which would integrate two systems.  He said one was relatively inexpensive in which his staff could create a batch and import it to another system.  It would help and not require a big investment.  The other solution was more involved, cost more upfront, but would not require any intervention. 

We both nodded identifying what we each thought the other would value most.  He thought that I would like the idea of cheaper solution.  After all I too run a small business where every penny counts.  I thought he would appreciate his operations running without having to worry about who was in the office, if they were having a good day or who would cover if they were on vacation or out sick.  The return on his investment would easily cover the manual processing, let alone the benefit of being able to concentrate on his business, not running the daily operations.  More time for customer interaction and service!

In what areas would your business flourish with streamlined operations? 

What more could management do if they had real-time information at their fingertips.  Snapshot views that allow drill down capabilities for in depth analysis when needed.  All departments communicating efficiently?

At Dolvin Consulting we work with industry experts like VAI and IBM to help organizations like yours look at what you are doing and how you are doing it, with the goal of achieving better operational efficiency, reduced costs and increased profits.  Profits that can be used to further improve customer service.  And yes, the best possible customer service.   

Contact us today.  No false promises, just a commitment to do the very best we can to help you move forward to help your customers.


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