- Location: Ruidoso, New Mexico
- Industry: Farm and Agriculture
"The customer experience and managing our cash flow and profits are our primary concerns. Eagle with Compass allows us to experience excellent success on all of these."
Jeff Jones, Controller | Valley Co-ops
Managing a Diverse Business with Epicor Eagle
Valley Co-ops is a farm supply cooperative located in South Central Idaho. Its six stores sell feed, hardware, plumbing, gates, and panels. Valley Co-ops also offers delivery of petroleum products and boasts a full-service Agronomy department. The cooperative started with the Eagle inventory and point of sale modules, and when its accounting software Centrak became obsolete in 2005, Valley Co-ops jumped at the opportunity to implement the integrated Epicor Eagle system throughout its business, starting with the Eagle accounting modules. "The customer experience and managing our cash flow and profits are our primary concerns. Eagle with Compass allows us to experience excellent success on all of these," asserts Jeff Jones, controller.
Streamlined Back Office Reduces Labor Costs
Since using the Eagle accounting modules, Valley Co-ops has seen improvements in the back-office. "Accounts Payable is completely streamlined. We moved one person out of Accounts Payable and into an area that needed more help," explains Jeff. "We also saw big savings in more efficient back-office processes. There's no duplication. You don't have to re-enter information into a different system. It's faster and there are fewer opportunities for human error."
Reporting and Dashboards Made Easy
After first seeing the Epicor Eagle visual reporting application, Epicor Compass, in 2007, Jeff recognized that it would be very useful for producing reports in order to quickly understand and analyze key aspects of the business. More importantly, it would be easy-to-use for a non-technical staff. "With very little training, you can create your own reports and dashboards," describes Jeff. "You simply drag and drop to create a report, look at it, and easily change it to be exactly what you want. Within five minutes, you can look at two or three report iterations and end up with one that perfectly highlights the data needed for decision making."
The easy usability of Epicor Compass means that Valley Co-ops has a number of staff members leveraging Compass. The office staff generates sales reports for customers. Upper management uses Compass for sales comparison reporting to better understand performance from month-to-month and year-to-year. "I helped other users create their first reports, and now they are on their own exploring data and creating reports that help them to make decisions," says Jeff.
Reports Help Increase Revenue
Valley Co-ops has a diverse business and with Compass, managers use customer sales information across its various divisions to increase revenue. "With cross-division sales analysis, we saw high-revenue feed customers that weren't using our propane services. We targeted sales conversations with those customers and gained new large propane accounts and increased our propane revenue. By looking at reports that compare customer purchases from year-to-year, we also spot customers that reduced their volume with us. Armed with that knowledge, we talk to those customers to understand why and potentially win back their business," continues Jeff.
Powerful Management Tool
As controller, Jeff finds that the flexibility and ease-of-use of Epicor Eagle and Compass helps him to better manage performance of all the Valley Co-ops locations. "If one of our stores has a problem such as margins that are over or under or shifts in sales volume, I have quick access to the summary and detail data needed to understand the issue and solve it. Being able to quickly switch between various Eagle modules and Compass to quickly pull data and prepare reports and analyses saves time and empowers me to be more responsive," notes Jeff. Valley Co-ops' general manager and division managers rely on Compass for reporting and analysis. "Our management team uses Compass for comparative reports and to help identify causes of variances. We also use Compass in preparation for our monthly management meetings, which are now focused on growing our business instead of discussing numbers on reports or speculating on why we have a problem," explains Jeff. "If we spot a variance or inconsistency in a summary report, we click down to customer or product detail to see exactly what is going on. We can be more proactive because information is so accessible."
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.