UK’s Largest Kitchen Supplier Goes Live with SAP

Howdens Joinery completes implementation of SAP to take control of manufacturing processes

Feltham, MiddxSAP today announced that Howdens Joinery, the UK’s largest trade supplier of kitchens, has gone live with SAP ERP within its manufacturing plants to control manufacturing processes, improve business efficiencies and provide an enhanced platform for growth.

Howdens Joinery has over 480 depots across the UK that sell kitchen and joinery products to small builders and its own manufacturing and supply division, which is a critical part of the business. The company sources products worldwide but has its own manufacturing operations with its largest plant in Runcorn, Cheshire, where around 3.5m kitchen cabinets are made each year.

The organization had previously operated manufacturing controls running on VMS systems that were over 20 years old. These systems were no longer supporting the manufacturing operations and some were out of maintenance. Howdens chose to invest in technology that would support not only specific operations but also the future growth of the business. An earlier version of SAP was already being used successfully within the finance department, so the company decided to invest further with SAP for their manufacturing division and began implementing SAP ECC 6.0.

The first stage of the implementation project was the rollout of SAP at one of the factories in East Yorkshire. The solution was implemented almost “vanilla” with only very minor modifications made to the system. Once it was clear that business benefits were being delivered, Howdens rolled out the solution across all of its manufacturing operations.

“SAP is now fully integrated within the business from the back office to the shop floor. The implementation has been a huge success, which I believe is because of the lack of changes we made to the solution and employees have taken to the change in system easily and quickly,” said David Hallett, Chief Information Officer of Howdens Joinery.

“We now have full control of exactly what is being manufactured and the SAP solution helps us control our waste and improve our service. This has a positive impact on profits and service, is more environmentally friendly and with our cost savings and robust platform we can continue to grow.”

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Molly McDonagh, UKI PR Manager, SAP, / +44 (0)7966 975 287