Manchester-based importer and distributor RoDO Ltd installed the Profitmaster software in 1999, and have grown since then from around £5m turnover to over £20m.
Having previously been wooed by a company that promised a good product backed up by significant resources, the RoDO Group had been dismayed to discover that the reality didn’t match the marketing hype. Bill Brierley, Managing Director of RoDO, takes up the story: "We had problems from day one and decided some four years later, after much frustration, to dump the system - at great cost! We approached Profitmaster and a decision was made to run with them."
"The main reason for choosing Profitmaster was the ease with which I could speak with those responsible for programming. They always consider the implications of what I'm asking for and often come back with ideas for improvements - rather than just blindly doing what I've asked. This level of service is imperative as we have learned that having only a single point of contact often results in directives not being followed and little or no progress being made," reports Bill.
Profitmaster’s software is designed specifically for the wholesale and distribution markets, and has been commended by businesses throughout the UK for its ease of use.
RoDO's clients vary from small retailers to large organisations such as Wolseley, B&Q, Crown Paints, Wilkinsons, so there is a perfect match between the target users of the package and RoDO's requirements.
Bill commented "Business never stands still and as such the software driving the business needs to change as the company develops. Profitmaster is always willing to listen and will make those significant changes."
The Profitmaster package is continually enhanced, and RoDO have had a significant input into the development of new features and functionality.
Various customers' computers are now linked to RoDO, sending orders and receiving invoices electronically.
The sales force now enter their orders via iPads, using touchscreen order entry, whilst in their customers' offices.
Picking-by-Voice was implemented in January 2012.
Mobile Sales Force
RoDO commissioned the development of a mobile sales package, enabling the sales force to place orders with full customer and stock information while in the field. The user interface was specifically designed for touchscreen devices using the latest mobile web technologies.
Using tablet computers with 3g data connections (RoDO chose the iPad, although other tablets/laptops will work), the advantages of having access to Profitmaster’s back-end systems while away from the office has enabled the sales force to place more orders with less errors, and eliminate paperwork.
By having customer details, price lists and order history available at the touch of a screen when visiting customers, RoDO’s sales force is better positioned to serve its clients with a streamlined ordering process tailored to their requirements.
Picking by Voice
RoDO have chosen not to use barcode scanners in the warehouse and we have implemented Picking by Voice instead. The obvious advantage is that paper picklists are no longer required, and so the errors from misreading them are eliminated. The picker has both hands free, which is a major advantage over a barcode scanner. Plus, barcode scanners can be dropped, which can be costly.
Pickers wear a headset, through which the computer instructs the person to go to a particular bin, and pick the required quantity of the product. The picker confirms which carton the items are put into, so that the despatch note can show the contents of each carton, to assist the customer with checking the delivery. The pick details are also recorded in case of a dispute later on.
In its first month of operation (Jan 2012) over 45,000 lines were picked compared to 32,000 lines picked the previous January, with virtually no picking errors, fewer pickers, and in less time overall. A second phase is scheduled for mid-2012, to have Goods Inwards, Replenishment, and Stocktake via Voice.