When we talk about success at Blue Ocean Systems, we’re not just referring to how many clients or projects we have secured. Success to us goes further than simply our own achievements; seeing our clients develop their capabilities, grow their organisation and develop enhanced products and services gives us a wonderful sense of pride and becomes our own success story.
As we continue to celebrate the BOS 10 year anniversary, we take a closer look at two of our most high profile success stories and uncover what we learnt along the way.
A Singapore-based firm employing just over 20 staff, PS Fasteners is the perfect example of our small and medium sized enterprise clients. They do phenomenal work in their industry by supplying more than 15,000 types and sizes of fasteners – such as screws, bolts, nuts, pins, anchors, rivets and clips.
An ISO accredited organisation, PS Fasteners work on an ecommerce platform to supply their growing customer database. Speed, efficiency and available to promise status is what differentiates them from the rest and they knew that to really provide the best service they could, they had to think big, even when they were still relatively small. PS Fasteners leveraged the ERP knowledge of BOS to make this vision a reality.
Probably the biggest challenge we supported PS Fasteners in overcoming was their online ordering system. Previously this was a very manual, back-end process and relied on human data downloads for orders received and constant rechecking throughout the day to see if any new orders had come in. This often led to missed or delayed orders and it wasn’t meeting the needs of PS Fasteners, their staff or their customers.
Shortly after their SAP Business One implementation, the online ordering system synced with their inventory data and orders could be processed automatically in a matter of minutes. They were also able to leverage the best practices of SAP in standardised financial documents and sales processes and now enjoy a much more streamlined approach to their daily activities. Manual order processing is a thing of the past for this forward thinking company!
PS Fasteners won the Best SAP Business One Project Award from SAP in November 2012. See the full post here. In July 2013, they became a public listed enterprise on the Singapore Exchange.[Read full success story]
What did BOS learn from PS Fasteners?
The Power of Listening!
Whilst there are some commonalities we see amongst our clients and the difficulties they face, we still dedicate a lot of our time to fully understand what they need.
We work with SMEs, many of them are family owned businesses which have been running sufficiently for many years. When we speak to them, they know they are ready for the next step but need a lot of nurturing to get there and to fully appreciate the benefits they might enjoy with SAP Business One.
We listen, we acknowledge, we appreciate. We want to know the history of the client as well as what they want for the future. Only then can we really provide a service that meets their requirements for today, and the next several years.
Sindicatum Sustainable Resources
A global implementation always brings with it its own challenges, but with Sindicatum we were able to leverage our remote teams to bring this climate change company onto SAP Business One with minimum disruption to their daily operations.
Relocating their head office from London to Singapore, Sindicatum needed to revise over 40 ledgers within their financial reporting and group entities; all with seamless integration. Blue Ocean Systems worked with our team in Nepal to create a thorough project and communications plan which meant our client was kept up to date at all times. We recognised that time was indeed money for them and they could not afford any delay or downtime.
We achieved this goal by running their legacy system and their new SAP Business One platform concurrently to perform full testing before switching over. Working over weekends and public holidays also meant their customers were not affected in any way.[Read full success story]
What did BOS learn from Sindicatum?
Flexibility is key!
We knew that any downtime would be detrimental to Sindicatum so in-depth planning and preparation was a vital element of this successful project. Working closely with the CTO, we highlighted optimum times for testing and switching over systems, even when that meant our teams working around the clock.
A flexible approach is what we always aim for so it was wonderful to have this opportunity to really push the boundaries!
Overall lessons learnt over the past 10 years
1. How to develop our instincts to approach and select our customers carefully.
This has been an important lesson for us to understand where our own strengths (and weaknesses) lay so we can work with clients we are aligned with and understand better.
2. Choosing the ‘right’ customer has a significant impact on our team and operations.
We have found that projects run better, for the client and us, if we are all a good fit for each other. It may sound obvious but we follow a ‘quality over quantity’ approach to ensure the best outcomes are achieved in the long term.
3. Recognising who are the ‘right’ customers for us. We believe the ‘optimum’ customer is one who is;
- Able to distinguish between value and price, no matter how big or small the organisation is
- Open to the possibilities of the transformational impact of ERP, even if they cannot fully envision it at the moment (they trust us)
- Willing to work with our team to set the foundation for future growth powered by information and insight (it should always be a two-way relationship)
- Prepared to empower their staff to contribute ideas and engage ‘buy-in’ to improve the chances of successful adoption
4. Not every project should go ahead
Over the years we have learnt that for everyone’s interest (BOS, the client and the end customer), if the fit is not good, then we should also part ways as amicably as possible, minimising any disruption for all parties.
We are very excited about on-going success stories we hear from our clients following their SAP Business One implementation and will continue to take our own lessons from them too!
We have secured many projects with leading foreign and local enterprises in the last 18 months and will be sharing these successful stories with you in our upcoming blogs!
Check out our online resources for more SAP success stories.