Vision Engraving & Routing SystemsThe Cost
Initially all of this was done with the knowledge of the employees and time. In sales it could take 20 – 30 minutes to create a quote for a customer and many times sales had the right “ideas” but the wrong part numbers and pricing. This issue was usually identified once the order was placed or even worse when production started. Pet tags orders could take up to 45 minutes to enter and were subject to many human entry errors. The errors were usually found when the customer received the wrong tags and called to return the tags. In tech support the most common way to identify parts was to ask the customer to take a photo and send it to us so we could search our warehouse for the part and send them a quote. This process could take days to complete.
Initially, we created Excel spreadsheets with look up tables for the machines and tags. This reduced the amount of time and the number of errors but not significantly. We also had the issue of the spreadsheets always needing to be updated to match the part number that changed and the prices depending on the customer. When we implemented SAP we implemented a configuration add on from Experlogix. This reduced the time and errors even further than the spreadsheet but was a separate database that we had to maintain. Machines and options constantly change so the database needed constant updating. Finally, we implemented CIS Configurator and its direct connection to SAP eliminates maintaining the separate database with part numbers and different pricing structures.
Sales produced 5,941 quotes in 2017 and it takes an average of 2 minutes to complete a quote. Given the 20-30 minutes with the old method we saved over 2,000 hours of work or almost one full time person. Tech support produced 7,471 quotes last year and even at the conservative savings of 30 minutes each that saved over 3,700 hours. That is another 1.5 full time employees. Considering salary and benefits for 2.5 to 3 employees that is a savings of almost $150,000 per year. Add on the time saved by eliminating errors and that number is probably over $200,000 per year.