Although Strekmenn is still a very young company, it has already experienced a number of landmark developments along its growth path. The company was founded five years ago as a result of a management buy-out by two former managers from Incom Norge AS, and now Strekmenn has five employees. Because business is booming, it has expanded its range of activities. At first, the start-up company from Lier near Oslo focused on the retail sector only, but for some time now Strekmenn has started to penetrate the transport sector, distribution centers, warehouse specialists, and discrete manufacturing companies.
“Demand for barcode and auto-ID systems, including printing solutions, is high, and this offers a small company like ours immense opportunities that we can, and want to, use,” says Knut Lilloe Salvesen, Strekmenn’s managing director. For him, there is no doubt that a powerful integrated enterprise solution plays a crucial role in the company’s plans to expand further.
Finger on the pulse
“No matter which way you look at it, office software and stand-alone applications (for instance, for financial accounting) simply cannot replace an integrated enterprise solution. An ERP system gives management more control over business processes. Virtually at the touch of a button you know what the company is doing and you can focus on customers’ needs,” says Salvesen.
Strekmenn’s requirements of a suitable ERP solution were in no way modest – extensive functions, optimal facilities for connecting and integrating external systems, straightforward implementation, and best-possible usability. The cost of the new system also had to be within the investment budget. In a very short time, those employees responsible scrutinized several business management solutions and finally decided on SAP Business One. Salvesen says, “SAP Business One was clearly our first-choice solution. It was pretty much precisely what we had in mind.” The SAP integrated solution for small and midsize enterprises was implemented, as planned, by SAP Business One partner Scarp AS in less than four weeks. “Naturally, we had to change our way of thinking and adapt to the new system. After all, many things were new and we had to adopt a more disciplined approach to our work. But we had wanted to change the way we worked. At the end of the day everything turned out as we had imagined it would,” Salvesen adds.
No one really wants to remember the times at Strekmenn before SAP Business One, because, “Today we work with the system as if it had always been there. We have already made astounding improvements thanks to the integrated ERP solution; in particular, we have increased our customer focus,” Salvesen explains. For instance, Strekmenn can now deliver products much quicker. The entire logistics and distribution process has speeded up, including the scheduling and completion of deliveries. Inventory levels are updated automatically and invoices are issued automatically. Information about customers has become much more transparent, as well.
Furthermore, management also benefits from using the integrated ERP solution as a management tool. As Salvesen points out, “Thanks to SAP Business One we can now plan, control, and monitor all our activities more easily. I don’t see myself as a particularly talented computer user, but you can learn how to use this system in a short space of time, even without training. Generating operating figures from the reporting functions is almost effortless, and is really fun.”