We needed a solution that would allow us to forecast for materials, with a lead time of up to 16 weeks and help us take control of our manufacturing costs. xTuple has proven to be a valuable tool for all areas of the company.
EMSEAL Joint Systems, LTD
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY FOR EMSEAL Joint Systems, LTD:
- Company had outgrown legacy system of spreadsheets and home-grown software.
- xTuple improved efficiency and accuracy in inventory control, purchasing and order entry.
- Multiple corporate entities and complex sales commission structure drove significant code enhancements, aided by xTuple’s open source flexibility.
- Implementation of full-featured xTuple ERP system on-time and under budget, at approximately 40% of the cost of other “big name” products.
EMSEAL, based in Massachusetts and Ontario, is the leading innovator and manufacturer of premium sealants and expansion joint systems for the commercial construction industry and specialty gasketing applications. EMSEAL has provided sealant and expansion joint systems for some of the world’s most famous structures, such as the Empire State Building, the Guggenheim Museum, Lambeau Field, the Mall of America, and the CN Tower. The Sustainable Business Leader Program (SBLP) has recognized EMSEAL as a leader in sustainable business practices and a partner in the effort to debunk the myth that companies must choose between profitability and sustainability.
EMSEAL used a custom-developed manufacturing system built on a Microsoft Access platform. Since the software was unsupported, and did not include important purchasing and inventory control modules, EMSEAL management collectively decided to obtain a new fully-functional enterprise resource planning (ERP) system, running on a modern, fully-supported platform, with superior performance in a Windows operating system environment.
EMSEAL’s primary functional challenge was a need for better inventory control and integrated purchasing.
EMSEAL has two corporate entities with a large amount of intra-company purchasing, necessitating customized data transfer capabilities. EMSEAL’s business complexity was further challenged by a multi-dimensional sales commission structure, outside the native capabilities of most ERP systems.
xTuple stands for effective, responsive, knowledgeable and speedy support and consulting assistance – what other software company can provide an installable fix within one business day?
EMSEAL management researched several legacy business management software vendors, including SAP, Microsoft, Sage and Epicor, but ultimately chose xTuple after testing and piloting with the free and open source xTuple PostBooks, which has been downloaded by other companies in similar situations over one million times. Overall EMSEAL spent approximately six months of preliminary research and investigation followed by a year of intense piloting of xTuple capabilities, closely following xTuple’s recommended implementation methodology, which is also available to the public on xTuple’s website.
EMSEAL I/T Manager Keith Rauseo said open source played an important part in the decision to select xTuple ERP: “We expected a need for significant customization and new module development which could be best accomplished in an open source environment, and we also appreciated the ability to reference the source code to do our own problem resolution.”
According to Rauseo, “xTuple offered the best functionality and flexibility with much lower up-front and ongoing expenses.”
EMSEAL had no hesitation embracing a new ERP system. “We jumped right in with xTuple! Sometimes the water seemed really hot, but we worked around all issues and despite our limited internal resources, we got to a successful launch in record time. xTuple has been able to handle just about every curve ball we’ve thrown at it so far,” said Rauseo.
According to Rauseo, xTuple ERP addresses EMSEAL’s business issues very well, especially the company’s complex operating environment with two locations in different countries, each having its own database instance, with multiple purchasing transactions continually moving back and forth. With xTuple, EMSEAL has been able to develop processes that automate most of the intra-company transactions and custom modules to handle commissions, accessory item calculation, gross margin reporting, and a large collection of ad hoc management reports.
Rauseo says, “The quality of support xTuple provides is just excellent. Far and away the most personal attention I have seen from a software vendor. The issue reporting capability, coupled with fast response time and occasional fixes within one or two business days, which one can often apply immediately, leads to a great customer-vendor relationship.”
“What makes xTuple different is the people AND the product. I like xTuple employees and have found everyone I’ve worked with to be helpful, responsive, and knowledgeable, not just about xTuple, but about ERP in general. I like that using xTuple allowed us to implement a full-featured ERP system on-time and under budget, at approximately 40% of the cost of other ‘big name’ products. The base system did a lot of what we needed to do, and it’s been relatively easy to build the other things we needed. It is quite easy to administer, both within the GUI and on the database administrative level,” said Rauseo.
With a go-live date of January 1, 2012, approximately half of EMSEAL’s 75 employees work with xTuple Standard Edition daily, using all of xTuple’s modules, including Products, Inventory, CRM, Sales and Manufacturing. EMSEAL also uses a Fixed Assets module developed by an xTuple partner – to record and manage maintenance orders on equipment – and the xTuple Connect product for complete email and EDI integration as well as extensive job scheduling that runs throughout every business day and off-hours.
EMSEAL is an active participant in new xTuple development. In addition to sponsorship of the Enhanced Commissions module, EMSEAL participated in the “email feature mob” which resulted in adding integrated email to xTuple Connect, contributed a change that allowed for use of an alternate revenue account on sales order line items, and added several fixes for bugs in SQL functions and module scripts.
In 2013, EMSEAL started initial setup and testing of xTuple Web Portal with the greatest interest in the Business-to-Consumer (B2C) sales module.
EMSEAL has significantly improved inventory control using xTuple ERP, saving the equivalent of weeks of employee time every month within the company’s manufacturing and accounting teams. EMSEAL’s custom accessories calculator saves hours of work every week within the order entry team.
“Overall, we just run more efficiently, and data is more visible and accessible to everyone on the team with xTuple,” added Rauseo.
BENEFITS FOR EMSEAL INCLUDE:
- On time, on budget implementation with limited internal resources, especially while extracting and loading data from an older system while simultaneously developing custom modules
- Huge, cost-effective improvement in operations included efficiency and accuracy in inventory control, purchasing and order entry
- Better positioned for growth due to improved productivity, now with a scalable, supported solution
- Easy-to-customize, open source system allowed for custom-developed modules added onto the base functionality
- Effective, responsive, knowledgeable and speedy support and consulting assistance
- Instilled an operating discipline and processing rules that did not exist in the earlier system
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