In May 2008, Crimsonwing was commissioned to implement an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system for Timesco, one of the UK’s leading surgical and medical company producing and distributing medical instruments. The ERP system is based on Microsoft’s award-winning Dynamics NAV platform and was implemented in March 2009.
Established in 1964, Timesco has been servicing medical professionals with the highest quality, innovative products for surgery, anesthesia, podiatry, emergency and diagnostics. The company produces and markets over 5,000 medical devices which are sold through their highly skilled direct sales teams throughout the NHS and private sectors. Timesco is based in Basildon in the UK and operates with a team of approximately 60 employees.
background & requirements
Andy Boylett, the General Manager at Timesco, stated that they needed “a clean and efficient transition of their purchasing, operations, sales and accounts functions to improve functionality, cost effectiveness and information flow throughout the company.”
The objective was to implement a flexible system which could be adapted to suit the company’s needs with an improved user interface. Timesco’s procedures and policies needed to be streamlined with respect to system maintenance. The client wanted to reduce user input and user errors as well as the amount of paperwork that resulted from the functionality of their ERP system. The system was also supposed to improve management reporting and analysis in order to give the client greater control and intelligence. It had to be possible to track through each business process for performance reporting and high visibility of profit margins was also of importance. “We evaluated three potential partners and felt that the approach from Crimsonwing was more in line with our own approach as a company, in as much as we did not feel that there was a ‘hard sell’ element to their presentations and negotiations and we felt that we were dealing with personalities and people and not corporate suits. We liked their more relaxed approach and felt that they would be more open to working with us to give us a system that would meet our needs rather than having a faceless project team trying to fit our systems into their predefined boxes.” said Andy Boylett.
Crimsonwing replaced Timesco’s previous ERP system via the implementation of Microsoft Dynamics NAV in the functional areas of sales, purchasing, finance, returns and warehousing. The new ERP system has 30 concurrent users.
Microsoft Dynamics NAV met most of Timesco’s requirements out of the box with the appropriate setup and configuration. However, there were a few areas where Timesco had specific needs and some custom development was undertaken by the Crimsonwing development team in order to streamline the processes. The team made sure that Timesco’s requirements were satisfied through the implementation of a solution that exactly met their business needs.
Most of the custom development was centred around the warehouse. The most obvious was the ability to incorporate their internal processing work, for example quality control, quality assurance and etching to the warehouse. While goods were in processing it was important they could not be picked.
Another specific requirement for Timesco was the ability to make sure there was enough stock to fulfill sales orders and to control this process. Dynamics NAV was developed to allow for a free stock calculation and reservation functionality was built on to allow for a more controlled allocation of stock to sales orders. This meant that the Timesco warehouse was not creating shipments or picks unless stock was actually available for dispatch and sales people could promise delivery with certainty by a specified date. This increased the accuracy of their services as well as customer satisfaction levels.
Andy Boylett commented “We feel that Crimsonwing were the right partner for us and helped us bring the project in on time and on budget. Their core team was knowledgeable about the systems and took time to understand our needs and tailor the systems to meet them. We always felt that their focus was on giving us the system that we needed.”
The solution implemented by the Crimsonwing team greatly reduced errors made by users of the system due to a reduction of the input required and an improved user interface. The interface allows for better searching and the strong filter capability highly facilitates the quick and easy analysis of data. Paperwork has been kept to a minimum and management reporting and analysis has also been improved. Visibility is a major advantage of Crimsonwing’s ERP systems as it provides the user with control and intelligence over any business processes. Timesco is now able to guarantee delivery of orders by a specific date instead of basing their deliveries on estimations, which in turn improved customer satisfaction levels.
“We worked with a good team that gave us real value for money. The development team felt like an extension of our own internal team. As a result we had a very smooth implementation with far fewer problems than we could have ever hoped for. We considered the project to be a complete success thanks to a real team effort from both sides.” said Andy Boylett.