Mr Fothergill’s Seeds Ltd is an established UK supplier of gardening products including flower and vegetable seeds, young plants, soft fruit trees and a range of garden equipment, fertiliser, pest control etc. They have a broad mix of customers; both B2B e.g. garden centres and DIY merchants; and B2C e.g. allotment associations and consumers.
Fothergill’s has been using NetSuite for several years and they approached Waer Systems to provide better warehouse management across its three sites. WAERlinx’ renowned flexibility meant that the company’s specific requirements were easily accommodated into the package, including:
The company ships a huge number of order lines. For example, in one week they shipped over 16,900. So the potential for efficiency savings was huge.
How WAERlinx was configured to meet Fothergill’s requirements
Automatic Build of Works Orders
Once the inventory is received in WAERlinx, the purchase order is updated in NetSuite and the inventory is committed. WAERlinx users then release the items for picking by brand and/or product category.
WAERlinx adds the items to pick lists which are then given to the service provider, Rookery Farm Packing (http://www.rookeryfarmpacking.co.uk/) to manage all picking, packing and shipping of the items.
Once the items are physically picked and checked, packing lists and delivery notes are printed, and NetSuite is updated. Once packed, the shipping label is scanned and the carrier booking is made.
This new feature in WAERlinx allows the user to restrict the number of sales orders assigned to a picker, giving Fothergill’s the flexibility to choose how they set up their operation and allowing them to manage the picking and packing functions together, should they wish.
It’s a challenging time for manufacturers and yet an exciting one too. Rarely have there been greater opportunities for global trading than there are today, and there is huge potential for growth. In developing markets especially, however, unless these opportunities are managed efficiently, increasing costs – of inventory in particular – make it ever more difficult to protect gross margins.
The never-ending quest for progress demands continuous innovation, yet many of the systems that are in place to support manufacturing operations today are deeply embedded, legacy applications that are difficult either to replace, or to improve in any way that adds real value.
So how do manufacturers gain a competitive advantage under these conditions?
One proven method is to take control of manufacturing by means of improved supply chain visibility, so that human ingenuity and common sense can regain control.
There is a clear and direct link between improving the flow of information and improving the flow of materials. In other words, by keeping your finger on the pulse of change, manufacturers remain agile and in control, and able to manage ever-increasing levels of complexity and variety.
So how do you find a solution provider that will be flexible enough for your manufacturing business’ needs, and what are your constraints?
Cost is often the first consideration and there are many all-singing, all-dancing solutions that would be ideal but unfortunately cost a small fortune.
On the other end of the scale, many of the lower cost options are pretty inflexible and while they may help solve some issues, there’s more often than not, a compromise in terms of functionality.
WAERlinx is a purpose-built suite of applications (Kitting, Kanban, RFID, WMS, VMI, Capacity Management) with a background in the demanding field of Aerospace supply chain management that is flexible by design. Customers can choose the applications that meet their requirements, with no need to change their existing ERP and MES systems in order to get there. WAERlinx simply bolts on, to enhance and improve what already exists.
WAERlinx’ purpose-built console of operational and management information, presented using information gathered from multiple systems and facilities within the organisation, helps to:
… and reduce costs