Miner's Case Study - Smart IS

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    Business Challenge

    In the past, Miners Inc. would have to manually place a paper-based replenishment order to the distribution center for the chain of grocery stores. Each grocery store would have to physically keep count and record of all their products then fax an order guide to the corporate office. At the corporate office, the order was entered into a spreadsheet, which was then entered into an ERP system.

    The paper-based order guide was inconvenient for users and inefficient in their business process. This double data entry was time consuming and was prone to human error. Moreover, the paper order guide could not provide up to date stock levels and item availability.

    Smart Solution

    We developed a mobile/web-based application called E-Guide, placing orders at a warehouse.

    Smart IS' final solution was comprised of two applications. The Front-Office Order Entry system called the E-Guide and the Back Office, management and administration system used to manage and transmit the orders to the warehouse.

    The Front Office system was designed to be used on an Android Tablet, whereas the Back-Office system was designed as a standard web-based application.

    Business Problem - A Little More About What Happened

    Miners Inc. is a privately held company that owns and operates a chain of grocery stores. Miners stocks many items that comes from its own distribution center. Every Miners store would have to manually place a paper-based replenishment order to the distribution center. As the number of stores and overall number of items is growing, the manual process is becoming inefficient.

    Miners collaborated with Smart IS International to improve this process. Utilizing its deep knowledge of retail industry, the supply chain processes and years of development experience; Smart IS developed a scalable web/mobile "Order Guide" for Miners. This system tightly integrates with their ERP and Warehouse Management Systems; and is designed around Miners ordering processes with a goal to increase efficiency, save time and resources, minimize ordering mistakes, and capture real-time inventory data.

    Smart IS' Business Analyst and Process Improvement consultants worked directly with Miners Users and Key Stakeholders to gain an understanding of the overall business needs as well as the functional, technical and administrative challenges.

    Leveraging our Rapid Development methodology; a working prototype was developed to ensure the new mobile interface is user friendly and efficient to work inside the store. The team from Smart IS tested the prototype side-by-side with Users and collected valuable feedback; incorporated in the final delivery. The prototyping exercise engaged the users early in the process, ensuring acceptance and buy-in for the final product.

    Built for Growth

    The system has been designed with security, data integrity, performance, organizational growth and scalability in mind. As a general practice, Smart IS develops all applications with 'separation of concerns' and maximize the use of APIs. This allows the application to continue to scale with the growing needs of the organization.

    VALUE ADDED

    Saves Time

    • Eliminated manual orders and multiple touches for keying in the order
    • Quicker access to the items catalog and available stock quantity

    Error-Free Orders

    • Easy review of orders with more accurate information
    • The application provides real-time information on quantity of an item which results in a descrease in ordering errors

    Ability to Submit More Orders Per Day

    • Increased Order Quantity Per Day

    Real Time Information

    • Store and Corporate users have access to real-time information of item inventory and orders being placed at stores or warehouses
    • Better inventory management
    • Automatic emails to designated employees after an order is submitted

    Decreased Manpower

    • Less manpower is required due to a more stream lined ordering process

    Dashboard and Reports

    • Dashboard and Reports provide Store Managers and Corporate Users critical system information such as:
      • Current Orders (Pending)
      • Submitted Orders
      • Status of orders
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