Based in Broxbourne, Hertfordshire, Poupart is one of the UK’s largest suppliers of quality soft-fruit, top-fruit, stone-fruit, citrus, cherries, grapes and a host of other products to multiple retailers and independents.
The company has been trading successfully since the middle of the 19th century and became a wholly-owned subsidiary of Argent Group Europe Ltd in 1997.
Poupart’s commitment to ensuring the freshest possible fruit is on the shelf is what drives them to consistently deliver the most efficient service possible.
Access to accurate, timely information is essential for Poupart’s success. As a crucial element in the supply chain, Poupart has to be able to analyse every step of the process, from the fruit’s growers, through international transportation and up to the supermarket shelf, to ensure targets will be hit and margins maintained. “We have to make sure we get the right fruit, of the right standard, to the right place, at the right time” explains Robin Dawson, Group Finance Director for Poupart Ltd. “Ultimately it’s about getting the best quality fruit, at the best possible price”.
Without access to the right level of information, understanding and managing the costs incurred during the supply chain process is impossible, efficiency is lost to administration of data and ultimately the end product available to consumers is less fresh and therefore less appealing.
As a current user of Microsoft Dynamics NAV, Poupart understands that a fully integrated and up to date solution is a key element in ensuring efficiency remains at its highest possible levels.
“We have all information at our finger tips. For example, if any questions come up about a specific order of fruit, we can have answers instantly with a few simple clicks of a mouse. That’s really powerful.”
Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2013 is the latest version of the Dynamics NAV solution. With a variety of new features and enhancements, NAV 2013 provides even more ways to improve efficiency, reduce administration and enhance productivity.
Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2013 provides a solution to meet all of Poupart’s data needs. An intuitive and comprehensive solution, it provides a central point to store, access and maintain all information about the supply chain process, with the option to drill deep into this data. In this way, Poupart is able to analyse every aspect of the process to:
- Ensure efficiency is maintained to the highest levels
- Monitor profits and capital expenditure
- Identify areas for process improvements
- Improve communications and service levels with partners and clients
Poupart has enjoyed the benefits from a number of enhancements from upgrading to the NAV 2013 solution including:
Enhanced web services – provides fruit growers and other parties along the supply chain with an intuitive online portal to access and import data directly into the database, with standard routines that check data integrity and automate error reconciliation. This vastly reduces admin times, ensures accuracy and provides instant access to data every step of the way.
Enhanced integration with Microsoft suite of products – improves training times, provides users with a familiar interface that they can instantly understand. Additionally, direct integration with MS Office and SQL reporting tools has helped reduce admin time and improve efficiency further.
Cut and paste to and from Microsoft Office – has allowed users to work in their programme of choice (e.g. Excel) and then copy/paste information seamlessly into the Dynamics NAV system.
Refreshable exports - Excel reports saved from Dynamics NAV can be set to auto-update, helping maintain version control and improving productivity. This has also helped further reduce the need to rekey data and the associated issues of discrepancies that this can cause.
New line filtering – new, intuitive filtering mechanic to quickly find lines within the database –removed the need to manually search through reports and made this process much more efficient.
Unique dimension sets – assigns a unique key to each order based on its attributes (type of fruit, container number, cost centre etc.) to allow easier, more intuitive tracking and reporting. In addition, this has reduced file size and provided faster loading times as previously each attribute required an individual record.
From top level overview to granular detail – Dynamics NAV 2013 builds upon and improves the ability to quickly and easily drill down into data and understand very specific costs. Poupart’s profits have gone up significantly this year thanks to the granularity of information available in Dynamics NAV 2013.
“We steer the flow of data to and from our growers and our customers,” explains Matthew Butlin, Information Director. “All key transactions are electronic and automated into Dynamics NAV, which improves the speed in which information is turned around. It’s this efficiency and accuracy that ensures that fruit is as fresh as possible when it reaches the shelf.”
Claire Warby, Business Systems Analyst gives an example of just how much administrative time Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2013 has helped save. “Every order requires an invoice. Before we had Dynamics NAV, each of these invoices would have to have been manually written. With the automation that Dynamics NAV provides, all of these invoices can be created and posted within 1-2 seconds of clicking a button. This saves the equivalent of a whole day a week of administration.”
Working with Tectura
“Originally, we chose Tectura because of their professionalism. Their competitors cannot compare with
their consultants, organisation and documentation. Having continued to work with Tectura in the following
years, this level of professionalism has never changed. We have always been more than satisfied with the service delivered from Tectura and there was no doubt that we would continue to work with them moving forward.”
Having previously worked with Tectura in implementing Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2009, Poupart approached Tectura again to support the upgrade process. “Originally, we chose Tectura because of their professionalism. Their competitors cannot compare with their consultants, organisation and documentation” says Butlin “Having continued to work with Tectura in the following years, this level of professionalism has never changed. We have always been more than satisfied with the service delivered from Tectura and there was no doubt that we would continue to work with them moving forward.”
Butlin and his team managed the technical side of the upgrade. “The upgrade process itself was painless. We took the existing database and performed the upgrade one evening. On Monday, our users were working on NAV 2009 and on Tuesday morning, they were on Dynamics NAV 2013. Everything went smoothly and according to plan. We prepared our users for the changes to the interface and received no concerns from them after the upgrade was implemented. Tectura was once again a credible partner during the upgrade process,” highlights Butlin “They assisted technically, helped us overcome any small problems or concerns we encountered and provided quality code and solutions for our requirements.”
Microsoft Technology Adopter Programme
Poupart joined Tectura in the Microsoft Technology Adopter Programme (TAP). The programme gives its members access to the latest, upcoming solutions during the beta phase. Microsoft provides additional support to organisations during implementation and welcomes feedback and suggestions from users. “We wanted to get the benefits from the latest version of Dynamics NAV as soon as we could” continues Butlin. “I knew that with Tectura, and Microsoft’s backing, if we came across any problems we’d be fully supported. The upgrade process was so smooth that the majority of our users only noticed the change in terms of the interface updates that we forewarned them about. We were also able to influence Microsoft in making changes to Dynamics NAV 2013 that improve real-world usage. Any bugs or issues we encountered were fixed within 24 hours.”
Poupart started by upgrading the solution in two of the group’s companies, to ensure any potential issues could be identified early and rectified before rolling out further. Within two weeks, and having encountered no such problems at all, Poupart had upgraded 10 companies within the group.
Moving forward, Poupart are looking to extend their usage of Dynamic NAV 2013’s web services and cash flow functionality to further increase their productivity gains and ensure the product continues to deliver ROI long after the upgrade process.
Profit growth – Poupart has seen huge profit growth thanks to the benefits that Dynamics NAV has delivered, as Robin Dawson states, “Microsoft Dynamics NAV has given us the ability to significantly increase our turnover.”
Efficiency gains – removal of paperwork and rekeying, the use of client-facing web services, line filtering and the improved speed and functionality of the Dynamics NAV 2013 system means efficiency is continually improving to ensure Poupart can deliver a consistent and high quality service.
Improved control – Microsoft Dynamics NAV has helped improve Poupart’s control over their business and the supply chain as a whole.
Full traceability – with the system integrated across the supply chain, every part of the process can be scrutinised and analysed, providing true transparency and traceability. Dynamics NAV 2013 has enhanced and improved this ability to drill down into data. Robin Dawson highlights, “We have all information at our finger tips. For example, if any questions come up about a specific order of fruit, we can have answers instantly with a few simple clicks of a mouse. That’s really powerful.”
User friendly – Dynamics NAV 2013 brings even further integration with existing Microsoft products, not just in technical terms but in the design of the interface. This gives users an immediate sense of understanding and makes training much easier. In addition, the role tailored client helps customise the user experience dependent on what they need to use within the product, simplifying the interface further and removing unnecessary options. “Our users have stated how the new features of Dynamics NAV 2013 have improved and helped further reduce admin,” Claire Warby continues.
Improved data accuracy – with automated data integrity checks, a reduction in manual keying and an intuitive, user friendly interface, Dynamics NAV 2013 ensures data accuracy is maintained throughout every step of the process
Integration out the box – integration with the Microsoft suite of software means Poupart has been able to spend more time on speeding up their processes, and very little on integration
Peace of mind – “Dynamics NAV 2013 has been a rock solid, reliable system,” Butlin continues. With the backing of Microsoft, Poupart and their partners can have peace of mind over the systems reliability and, looking to the future, longevity.