Case Study: Burkland Associates
Peter Jordan of Burkland Associates has helped many companies flourish using SOS. Inventory and has seen some startling results.
“I first came across SOS some 5 years ago when I was working with a beverage company whose inventory systems were a mess. They were using QuickBooks (enterprise desktop) for financials and relied on spreadsheets and hope for inventory control. I knew there must be a better solution, so I researched the market and discovered SOS Inventory. SOS had written an online inventory control system specifically designed to work with QuickBooks Online. The team at SOS were very patient, as both I and the beverage company team got to grips with the SOS Inventory solution and migrated from QuickBooks desktop to QuickBooks Online. I have to say that the support we received from the outset was second to none. Day times, evenings, and weekends, the SOS team was always there to help and support us. In a matter of weeks, we created order out of chaos, and provided the management team with information they could trust in a speedy and timely fashion enabling orderly, controlled growth, which was certainly not possible before.”
Peter has gone on to support and assist many SOS Inventory implementations across several sectors including consumer packaged goods and manufacturing. Being focused on the SME market, SOS customers are often replacing spreadsheets when they implement the SOS solution. Spreadsheets are popular and easy to use and are fine as a local data manipulation and analysis tool, but you must be wary of building pivotal company subsystems on spreadsheets as they often become problematic.
Peter takes up the story, “Using multiple spreadsheets to manage inventory is always a bad idea. You end up with multiple stock figures, timing issues, transcription issues. How can you run a business when you are do not have ‘one version of the truth’? By implementing SOS Inventory, you end up with one single unified business system for inventory management; one version of the truth that is proven, audited, and verified. With that you can make sensible decisions and understand where and how you can grow your business”.
For a company who buys, makes or sells products, the demands on an inventory control system are far reaching. The system needs to embrace not just Stock but Sales Orders, Purchasing, Manufacturing, Warehousing and much more. When appropriate, it needs to be capable of managing Lot Control and Traceability. It needs to be able to communicate with the warehouse with barcodes and scanners and potentially links to factory automation.
What benefits does SOS bring to those who implement it?
“Cost Savings and Growth,” is the answer that Peter gives. “SOS Inventory enables cost reduction. You simply need less people in Admin to do a better job! And it enables a business to grow. Not just because you have more accurate information, although that is a big part of the answer. After implementation, you will have proven, auditable facts about how your business is doing – incontrovertible financials that you can take to investors and financiers with confidence. You will not attract investment for growth if your underlying financial systems are poor. I saw one of my SOS customers grow $1m sales to $7m sales as a direct result of implementing SOS Inventory, as they were able to attract investment. Prior to SOS, no-one would have looked at them. The other less tangible benefit that SOS brings to the SME leader is the ability to sleep at night knowing that your books balance and all is well with the business”.
Recognizing that SME’s do not have excess capacity or cash, how can they afford a system such as SOS Inventory?
“SOS is incredibly affordable,” confirmed Peter. “Just a few dollars a month to transform your business. Talk about good value! And it is so easy and quick to implement. With the amazing support you receive from the team at SOS, to do the job properly takes just 3 – 6 weeks. That’s 3-6 weeks to transform your business and create a platform for growth that will support your business for years, while offering the ability to have peace of mind (complete transparency) and a credibility boost that can attract investors when you are ready”.