Go Search

Millard Lumber

Millard Lumber's business has grown to two locations that include design centers, drive-thru yards, manufacturing plants, and a turnkey project office. They decided to replace their Epicor ECS Pro system with newer technology that was better able to support the business. “We've always tried to integrate as much technology as we can into our organization,” explained Joel Russell, vice president and chief operation officer at Millard Lumber. “With Epicor BisTrack software, we feel like we actually have a tool that we can build upon.” 


Continue reading

“There's little doubt in my mind that we've picked up margin and efficiency using the Epicor BisTrack solution, but the quality of the service we can give our customers has also been greatly enhanced.” 

Joel Russell, VP and COO | Millard Lumber
Company Facts
  • Location: Omaha, Nebraska 
  • Industry: Lumber and Building Materials 
  • Number of Locations: 2 
  • Website:  www.millardlumber.com

Challenges
  • Lack of data visibility across the company caused inefficiencies

Solutions
  • Epicor BisTrack
  • Epicor BisTrack Delivery

Benefits
  • Better visibility and real-time monitoring of contract-driven projects and turnkey systems
  • Job costing available within minutes instead of 1-2 days
  • Faster receiving by 48-72 hours
  • Better coordination of order fulfillment requirements
  • Improved quality of customer relationships

Follow Us

Turnkey systems for speed and control 

Millard Lumber deals with mostly professional clientele, residential and commercial builders, and contractors representing upwards of 90 percent of their business. They offer a wide variety of building materials for projects ranging from kitchen renovations to construction of multi-family apartments and retirement homes. 

“The unemployment rate is phenomenally low in our state, and it's hard to find skilled labor in the construction trade,” said Russell. “So we offer whole turnkey packages including labor for a lump sum price. We panelize wall and floors, we do roof trusses, and we install it in the field-and we're able to get the work done in the timeframe needed by our builders.” 

Better job costing for contract-driven sales 

“We do a lot of larger commercial jobs, said Russell. “We use BisTrack software for contract management and billing, as well as labor and materials tracking. We enter each phase of the contract on a line item-for example wall panels or windows and window labor-and schedule its billing. We can monitor in real time at each phase of the contract to see if we're making or losing money, and if something is going wrong, we can drill down in seconds to find out why.”

Accessible, real-time data 

“The biggest benefit of the BisTrack solution is that real-time data is easily accessible to anyone,” said Chris Routhe, business process manager at Millard Lumber. “Now, we're able to create custom dashboards with real-time information relevant to specific jobs and operations. We display orders and ticket information for everyone to see-the sales person, shop supervisors, purchasers, and the dispatch team.” 

Millard Lumber is now much more responsive to changes in delivery dates. Routhe explained, “If the sales person pulls in the delivery date for a millwork item-such as pre-hung doors-everyone knows about it so it's not a mad rush.” 

Efficient delivery operations 

BisTrack Delivery is a mobile app that helps drivers quickly and easily record and document deliveries and pickups. “It was a big deal for us to add the Epicor BisTrack Delivery application,” said Routhe. “Prior to BisTrack Delivery, our manual way of documenting dropoffs was extremely time-consuming. The drivers had to take the photos, then give the digital cameras to the dispatcher at the end of each day. The dispatcher then had to go through 25 different cameras to download the pictures-trying to figure out which pictures went with which sales order ticket-and lastly had to save the photos on our server. It was a painful process that, in actuality, never happened all the time. The other problem was our entire team had difficulty finding the photos when needed-we always had to call up a dispatcher to help track down the photo. This caused a lot of wasted time when we had customer disputes.” 

“We decided to make the investment in BisTrack Delivery to more efficiently run our delivery operations. Our entire team loves it and we couldn't imagine working without it,” said Routhe. “We've been able to smooth out several customer situations when they say, 'You didn't drop off this product.' We can simply and quickly pull up a photo and see where and when the delivery was dropped, which is really helpful with new construction when there isn't always an address.” 

“We tell other dealers that the first BisTrack add-on application that anyone should buy is BisTrack Delivery. It's a staple in our business and having the visibility and real-time information is crucial for success,” said Routhe.   

Dashboards motivate sales people 

Millard Lumber has more than 30 sales people, and Routhe credits Epicor BisTrack software and its dashboards for keeping them informed and motivated. “The sales people are able to get answers quicker. They get a list of their orders going out that day. They can see things like backordered items and decide how to handle it before it becomes an issue,” said Routhe.

“We show them their top 10 customers and their daily and monthly sales and margins,” said Routhe. “We rank the sales guys by total sales. They're pretty competitive, so having that on their desktop gets them going.”

“We're building out a CRM dashboard now, too,” said Russell. “It will allow the sales people and their managers to review opportunities and the sales pipeline for each sales person.”

Quality of service improved amid growth 

Russell says that data availability from Epicor BisTrack software has improved their operations and profitability, but adds that it also improves customer service. “For example, when something comes into our receiving area and is scanned, it's received instantaneously,” said Russell. “So, if it's a special order, now the sales person gets a notification on their dashboard immediately that it has arrived, and he can let the customer know.” 

“There's little doubt in my mind that we've picked up margin and efficiency using the Epicor BisTrack solution, but the quality of service we can give our customers has also been greatly enhanced-even though our volume has grown. You'd think it would be more difficult to service the customer the same way, but we're able to do it more efficiently.”

Epicor solutions are designed around the unique operational needs of manufacturers and are available in the cloud or on premises. Customers can better manage complexity and focus on core growth activities.

Talk to an Expert »  

small-menu-callout.png
 
small-logo.png