A Clade Success Story: Transforming Customer Service with Microsoft BI
St George Foodservice is one of Sydney’s leading distributors of food, packaging and cleaning products. It services commercial sites, such as hotels and offices, all over Australia.
THE CATALYST FOR CHANGE
Since its inception is 1980, the family business had been built on anticipating and meeting consumer needs. However, their responsiveness to a rapidly expanding customer base was limited by their manual reporting system. When the ERP system they had been using for year was scheduled for an upgrade, they decided it was time for systemic change.
According to the Sales Operations Manager, Paul Tsiknas, the company’s manual reporting system was not compatible with the upgraded ERP software. This was a catalyst for seeing what St George Foodservice could do to operate more efficiently. Along with running a sales team, Tsiknas is also responsible for the business’s growth strategies.
The upgraded ERP system ran on a Microsoft platform, so Microsoft BI was a logical fit.
ST GEORGE FOODSERVICE MEETS CLADE
Tsiknas and his team consulted their IT manager to find a credible Microsoft BI partners. He spoke to a number of providers before finally settling on Clade.
‘We were all happy with that choice. They were very open and transparent from day one. We were moving at a very fast pace and they were very responsive,’ says Tsiknas.
‘When our reporting was produced manually, the sales information was at a point in time. We had to extract information and insert it into Excel workbooks which were then distributed by email once a week. Now, everything is web-enabled so we can access sales information 24/7 via our desktops or mobile devices, rather than waiting for a weekly email.’
A GAME CHANGING PARTNERSHIP
Tsiknas describes the outcome as a game changer.
After working with Clade's Senior Consultants, Hubert La and George Karithanam, Tsiknas's team is able to:
(1) Gain 24/7 access to sales data;
(2) View customers’ spending patterns over eight weeks and 12 months; and
(3) Access data for the past three years.
‘We can drill down to the invoice level – the fine detail of what customers are buying’, says Tsiknas. ‘The sales team has access to many different aspects of the data in real time across several dimensions, including sales territory.’
There were many unanticipated benefits too. Tsiknas found that unexpected efficiencies arising from the new reporting system gave the team more time to focus on productive work.
‘In our sector you have to be very nimble and react fast. Now my guys can quickly identify any anomalies in customer spend and talk to them about what they need and how we can help.’
St George Foodservice’s plans to work with Clade in the near future is testament to the value Clade has brought to the partnership.
‘We’re currently scoping out a new project with them,’ says Tsiknas. ‘This will kick off in the next few weeks.’
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