- Location: Somerset, New Jersey
- Industry: Industrial
- Number of Stores: 1
- Web site: www.automann.com
"The new layout combined with Epicor's Wireless Warehouse Management Solution allows us to pick orders in less than half the time."
C.J. Khanduja, Vice President | Automann
A Global Truck Parts Distributor Makes Its Move
While recently consolidating three locations into one new 84,000-sq. ft. facility, New Jersey truck parts distributor Automann recognized an opportunity to further improve on their warehouse operational efficiency by implementing Epicor's Wireless Warehouse Management Solution (WWMS). Automann already had several years of successful experience using Epicor's Prophet 21® solution when they decided to proactively engage the Epicor Professional Consulting Services team to develop protocols and procedures for implementing a world-class wireless warehouse.
Forging a Partnership
In 2005, Automann was already beginning to experience the payoff of a business strategy built around developing market leadership through a forward-thinking, customer-centric quality philosophy. As part of that growth, they embraced the technology and underlying experience that Epicor could bring to their business as a central tool for success.
"Before deciding on Prophet 21, we took a close look at both the product and the company. We knew that this would be a long-term partnership and were impressed by what we saw as Epicor's real-world distribution experience," says Automann Vice President C.J. Khanduja. "We wanted a proven product that we could adapt our business processes to, instead of trying to develop our own custom methods. We were confident we were getting a product designed and supported by people who had an intimate working knowledge of today's technologybased distribution marketplace."
So confident, in fact, that Automann implemented Prophet 21 as an almost turnkey system, aligning their business processes and procedures to it. "It didn't require much change at all," notes Khanduja, "and what little we did need, Epicor quickly supported with their services."
Supporting a Complex Warehouse Installation
In 2008, Automann's relocation process was running full throttle, and getting inventory organized while keeping orders moving was a challenge. "All of our personnel were fully engaged and committed to this new facility and the process of transition," Khanduja explains. "In our previous facility, bin locations weren't tracked, and that created a big logistical challenge. In our new facility, one of our primary goals was to improve operational efficiency and build capacity to support future growth. We knew we had to get a good handle on bin locations to have efficient order picking."
Epicor's Professional Application Consulting Services experts were invited to assess the situation. The Consulting team quickly began to integrate Automann's floor practices with the full functional capacity of the WWMS module, working to define methods and best practices consistent with the module. They stepped in to train administrative staff as well as warehouse floor personnel, and prepared a detailed set of tasks to get the warehouse on the right track, in line with Automann's vision for the new facility.
Automann embraced the Consulting Services team's recommendations and focused their efforts. They aligned their approach to inventory management to take full advantage of the years of inventory logistics experience Epicor had built into the functionality of the WWMS module. The Automann warehouse team defined physical layouts and implemented bar coding and bin locations for over 14,000 part numbers.
The upfront effort has paid off with ongoing accuracy and operational efficiency. According to Khanduja, "The new layout combined with the WWMS system allows us to pick orders in less than half the time it did in the past."
Accurate, Actionable Information
"The consultants enabled us to take on the challenging load of transitioning to a wireless warehouse management system very effectively," concludes Khanduja. "We are now better able to service our customers by giving them real-time product availability, and accurately processing a high volume of complex pick-and-packs the same day."
With over five years of annual double-digit growth, Automann's management continues to view Epicor's products and consulting services as a key component that helps them maintain a leadership position within their market sector.
Epicor Software Corporation is a global leader delivering business software solutions to the manufacturing, distribution, retail, and service industries. With more than 40 years of experience, Epicor has more than 20,000 customers in over 150 countries. Epicor solutions enable companies to drive increased efficiency and improve profitability. With a history of innovation, industry expertise, and passion for excellence, Epicor inspires customers to build lasting competitive advantage. Epicor provides the single point of accountability that local, regional, and global businesses demand. For more information, visit www.epicor.com.