- Location: Miami, Florida
- Industry: Plumbing, HVAC, and electrical products
- Number of Stores Employees: 17
- Web site: www.guillens.com
" In the first year after implementation, we increased sales by 12 percent. In addition, since going live, I firmly believe Eclipse has improved our overall productivity by 80 percent. Everyone from our 85-yearold bookkeeper to our 17-year-old inventory person easily grasped the Eclipse system and now raves about its use."
Veronica Guillen-Simon, Vice President | Guillen's Enterprises, Inc.
Technology, innovation, and unsurpassed customer service have been the foundation of Guillen's for nearly 40 years. Originally founded in 1973 as a leading plumbing warranty repair operation servicing all of Southeast Florida, Guillen's Enterprises, Inc. has since evolved into a leading worldwide supplier and distributor of plumbing products with a 2,500 sq. ft. showroom and warehousing complex based in Miami, Florida. This includes the on-site housing of more than 13,000 different items and nearly 200,000 total parts from leading manufacturers such as American Standard®, Kohler®, Jacuzzi® Whirlpool Bath, GROHE®, Hansgrohe®, Duravit®, Delta®, and more.
"Our goal is to be the most respected supplier in our industry," says Veronica Guillen-Simon, Vice President. "I grew up with this business and was instilled with a passion for providing customers with honest, trustworthy, and knowledgeable service. As a result, in recent years, we committed thousands of dollars to meeting client needs with advanced, just-in-time delivery programs, online ordering, e-mail invoicing, and powerful Web commerce tools that allow customers to easily access detailed pricing, availability, and account information."
Smooth implementation leads to streamlining and tracking in real time
Most recently, this process included the implementation of the Epicor Eclipse enterprise resource planning (ERP) software solution, designed to provide plumbing, HVAC, and electrical wholesalers with a powerful, transactional-based system for streamlining and tracking all purchasing, inventory management, and warehousing functions in real time.
In use at Guillen's since September 2006, Eclipse was purchased to replace the company's existing accounting software program, which according to Guillen- Simon, "barely worked, didn't integrate with any other department, cost thousands of dollars to fix, and crashed so often that I had to keep a second set of books to ensure the information I needed to run the company was always available." After researching numerous options, Guillen's chose Eclipse based on the recommendations of several local distributors, including other plumbing and electrical products vendors already operating the Epicor solution. Another significant selling point for Guillen-Simon was the system's "plug-and-play mentality" that "didn't need to be built or modified to address our specific industry needs."
"Almost everyone I spoke to not only used Eclipse, but applauded its benefits," adds Guillen-Simon. "Plus, I wanted a system that would grow with my company and didn't need constant modifications and updates. Eclipse has done all this and so much more over the past six years. I couldn't be happier with both the service and the solution."
The implementation included nearly 80 hours of video, online, and in-person, on-site training performed over six months. "In the first year after implementation, we increased sales by 12 percent," explains Guillen-Simon. "In addition, since going live, I firmly believe Eclipse has improved our overall productivity by 80 percent. It replaced the worries and guesswork of our previous system with access to reporting methods and layers of information that we never even imagined.
"Furthermore, the entire process from implementation and training to start-up was just so smooth. There's a line of continuity that we never had before," she says. "Epicor has been extremely proactive in helping us to achieve our goals and offering a constant, cordial, and responsive source of support. Everyone from our 85-year-old bookkeeper to our 17-year-old inventory person easily grasped the Eclipse system and now raves about its use."
Facilitating sales and fulfillment functions companywide
Among the features that impressed Guillen's was the ability of Eclipse to "look behind the scenes" and facilitate functions throughout the organization. This includes linking the company's online store to the Eclipse ERP system to create invoices instantly, virtually eliminating billing and statement errors and allowing customers to pay directly through the Web site. In addition, many of Guillen's customers have also greatly appreciated the benefits of the software's signature capture capability, which enables authorized individuals to save time by simply making purchases via fax or e-mail.
As a result of knowing exactly what is on the shelf at any given moment, the company has greatly streamlined the scheduling of its own purchases and is now restocking premium items every 90 days instead of weekly. This in turn has helped Guillen's accounting department to save thousands of dollars annually, by taking much better advantage of vendor terms that offer a 5-10 percent discount on early payments.
"Eclipse links everything together through an online server to greatly reduce the time of nearly every internal activity," says Jenny Dominguez, who has held accounting and accounts receivable responsibilities at Guillen's for the past nine years. "The old system used to generate an extensive paper trail that flowed through five separate people to fulfill just one order. With Eclipse, everything is on screen for all to see simultaneously. Subsequently, orders that used to take 10-15 minutes to complete are now done in one or two.
"With the old system, it also took me two full days to do month-end accounts payable and receivable activities," she adds. "I now do the same amount of work in only one day. It just seems like everything that took an hour before Eclipse is currently performed in 10 minutes. Furthermore, it is the ideal solution for multitaskers, since it allows me to start something, stop, work on another project, and then easily go back without ever losing an ounce of data."
Looking forward to taking Eclipse into the field
As for the future, Guillen's Enterprises is presently considering the opening of several new locations that would all be linked through Eclipse, as well as adapting the software for use in mobile applications that would enable order entries and the ready retrieval of customer historical information in the field. "The challenge with Eclipse is that it does everything," offers Guillen-Simon. "We're still learning all it can do. In the meantime, it not only freed us to do what we do best, it has also primed us for growth with another layer of efficiency that benefits the entire company each and every day."
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.