Through trade customers, Telephone Wreckers resells telephone parts to end users, corporate bodies and government institutions. Being a wholesaler, Telephone Wreckers stocks an extensive range of products and part numbers. For them, being able to have clear visibility over stock and understand where products are at any given time is crucial to their business.
As their operations grew, the lack of formal processes in place became increasingly impractical and unsustainable, driving them to seek a solution. Director Mark Prieditis says that implementing Cin7 has “saved staff time, increased productivity and led to better loss prevention.”
The road to stock visibility
Much of Telephone Wreckers’ inventory management, such as it was, relied on staff knowledge. “If we wanted to know how much stock we had of a particular product, it required our staff to physically go looking on shelves. We were relying on what information was in people’s heads, which wasn’t ideal,” says Mark. This approach may have been fine while the business was small but, as it kept growing, it became more and more difficult to manage. “It was a bit of a logistical nightmare, since we were operating online as well. We had instances where customers would buy something online but we wouldn’t have it in stock. Managing this channel and our multiple branches was a key hurdle we faced.”
But Mark had had some experience in trialing inventory management solutions through a smaller business he was operating at the time. In total, he tried four different systems, with his accountant recommending that he focus on a solution that would solve his logistics and inventory problems but also allow for integration with Xero.
Creating a robust and mobile business
Mark found that although some vendors advertised functionality such as the ability to manage negative stock quantities, using that functionality in the real world was a different story. “It seemed the other guys out there couldn’t really answer the questions I had. I was sure I wasn’t the only one with similar requirements, so I wanted to find the solution that was right for the business,” says Mark. Simplicity was a key requirement in his selection process: “It had to be simple enough that anyone could use it but also have a powerful back end to manage our future requirements.”
The Cin7 support team helped Mark and the team get up to speed relatively quickly, customizing Cin7 based on their requirements. But in retrospect, Mark felt that a lot of the customisations probably weren’t needed. Telephone Wreckers just needed to use Cin7 a bit more to understand its true capabilities. “The problem for us was that we were expanding so quickly, we didn’t really have processes in place. Using Cin7 actually allowed us to understand that some of our previous processes weren’t ideal, so it gave us an opportunity to improve them.”
The fact that Cin7 is cloud-based also meant that Mark could take orders on the go. “I was even able to sit there at a soccer match, place an order and have it sent to one of our corporate customers. That’s just something I have never been able to do.”
An inventory solution that paid for itself
The biggest benefit that Telephone Wreckers witnessed was an increase in staff productivity. Staff are now able to access orders remotely and see exactly what’s in stock. This has also led to better loss prevention throughout the company, as they’re able to track all inventory movements. “Because [Cin7] has set processes, it has become a very handy tracking tool for our entire operation. I would go so far as to say it’s paid for itself in under 12 months,” says Mark. Now, if stock is registered in the system, Telephone Wreckers can track exactly where that stock is. They simply couldn’t do that using QuickBooks, their previous accounting system.
The company is now able to generate quotes using Cin7’s online quoting system. The system enables customers to accept quotes and generates sales orders automatically. Cin7 has also enabled better business processes and ensures that all pricing and quoting matches what’s in the system. Mark believes that using Cin7 “provided a solid platform to help grow the business by 18%.”