Eureka sets itself apart by allowing its clients to create their own personalized products. Manufacturing agents, architects and designers are invited to pick and choose components from over 8,000 parts.
Thanks to this unique ability and the excellence of its customer service, Eureka was growing rapidly, but it was also beginning to face some serious challenges. For instance, its Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software did not support item configuration and could no longer support the company’s rapid expansion. As a result of this shortcoming, Eureka was experiencing frequent errors such as creating orders with incompatible items or ordering parts that were already in stock. This increased direct and indirect costs as a result of lost orders because of inventory shortages, the depreciation of obsolete items, negative impacts on the production schedule or delays in delivery.
Given that Eureka anticipated a revenue growth of 40%, it was really time to change its ERP. But this was a sizeable challenge: How could Eureka deliver its products to clients in under 10 days, when the lead time with vendors throughout Asia and Europe could easily reach 90 days? And how could it do this while also maintaining minimal stock levels? It was clear that an efficient supply-chain management solution had to be found.
Eureka finally selected Microsoft Dynamics AX because the Product Configurator was the perfect solution to the problems it encountered during the order-taking process. In addition, Microsoft Dynamics AX provides visibility of stock levels in real time and detailed financial reports to track the company’s performance at all levels.
Thanks to the Microsoft Dynamics AX Product Configurator, customer-service representatives can now configure the products using all of the permitted combinations and include assembly drawings. Taking an order is now as simple as looking at all the possible combinations and asking the customer a few predefined questions. The sale price is automatically displayed and the order can be confirmed instantly. Several actions are then automatically executed, such as the creation of the finished product itself along with its BOM and the generation of the production order with the assembly drawings. The streamlining of the entire process has contributed to significant time and productivity gains both at the order-entry and production level.
Another significant improvement brought about by the new ERP relates to the order-taking process. Once the information has been collected, it is immediately posted on Eureka’s extranet, so clients can follow their orders online – including the anticipated delivery date – anytime they want. As a result, the number of incoming calls has been reduced by 25%.
In addition, Eureka can now rely on Microsoft Dynamics AX to get purchasing recommendations based on its historical sales and maintain minimum and maximum inventory levels. This allows Eureka to avoid surpluses and stock-outs, not to mention freeing up several million in cash flow without affecting its level of customer service. Thanks to these measures, Eureka has achieved its goal of delivering 90% of its orders within 15 days, which is quite an achievement considering that the lead time with vendors can easily exceed three months.
Over the years, Eureka has also acquired new performance-tracking tools, including dashboards to better visualize the sales performance of its 85 manufacturing agents and regional directors. This tool allows agents to know exactly where they stand in relation to their goals and to proactively take the required steps to attain them.