Client: Office Choice Australia

Interview: Greg Wiggill, IT Manager, Office Choice Dealer Group

Office Choice Australia, with the help of Business Software Partner ABT, implemented a national roll-out of the Pronto Xi enterprise software system across their entire Dealer Group. The ERP system includes Pronto POS (Point of Sale), Sales Orders, Inventory, Purchasing, Financials, Supplier Catalogue and the fully integrated Commerce Vision eCommerce system.

Switching from disparate systems that included their own internally developed ChoiceBMS (Business Management System) was a major undertaking for the leading office supply retail group.

Reports back from the Dealers throughout the project have shown the new Pronto Xi platform has been very well received with dealers loving the the efficiencies and automation Pronto Xi delivers. With general surprise at how easily their staff has picked up the new system some dealers plan to implement more Pronto Xi modules such as CRM.

We could easily keep writing about what a successful roll-out this has been and give ourselves big pats on the back but thought you might like to hear how well the implementation has gone in the words of Greg Wiggill, IT Manager, Office Choice Dealer Group

Firstly, a bit about Office Choice

Office Choice Australia is part of the world’s largest office products buying group.

With over 60,000 product lines available, Office Choice supplies both globally sourced office products and their own branded products.

Supporting more than 130 nationally, Office Choice dealers range from 100% B2B dealers operating out of warehouses, to a small retail shops in local shopping centres.

ABT: “What was the problem with the old system?”
Greg Wiggill: “Our old ‘ChoiceBMS’ system was written in Cobol. We weighed up our options and chose to discontinue any further development on the legacy system. Rather than owning our own software company and develop internally we decided to get this out of the office and in the hands of a current and up to date ERP system.”

ABT: “Was there anything in particular that swayed your decision to go with Pronto?”
Greg Wiggill: “We went through our requirements together with an extensive outsourced tendering process and found Pronto Xi from ABT to be a good fit for our stationery dealers’ processes.”

“In particular we felt confident that the software was reliable and well proven over 30 years and the future roadmap of development ensured we would be current and up to date for many years to come.”

ABT: “Why choose a Reseller like ABT to steer the implementation?”
Greg Wiggill: “The value of the total solution which included an integrated eCommerce system, concurrent user pricing, support, consulting, development and hosting; plus being able to deal directly with a reseller that had implemented dozens of like customers were the primary factors.”

ABT: “Has the business experienced any noticeable benefits with the new system?”
Greg Wiggill: “Our dealers have realized definite efficiencies in processing and dispatching stationery orders. Also the reliability, availability and disciplines of the Pronto Xi system has been noticeable. Dealers report that they now have better access to their information which allows them to make quick critical business decisions.”

ABT: “As an IT Manager what are your impressions of the system so far?
Greg Wiggill: “I am confident in our decision to move to Pronto Xi. Together with the integrated eCommerce module from ABT, we feel we have a great agile solution (and are pleased we are not bogged down in a difficult alternative platform) that overall adds lots of value to us at head office and to our dealers and enables us to more easily adapt and change direction should we decide to do so.”

ABT: “How would you describe the feedback from dealers so far regarding the new system?
Greg Wiggill: “The feedback from dealers has been excellent. I have spoken to all our implemented members over the past year and they all report how Pronto Xi has been positive for their business.

Greg has supplied actual quotes from the stores:

“You will appreciate the disciplines and the integrity of this new system. I am not an IT junkie, but this system is inherently solid both front and back office. We had to have extra internal manual processes to manage our old system. None of these are now required.”
– Rosebud Stationery & Office Supplies.

It went as well as can be expected. It was great having staff onsite who understood the system.”
– Select Office Supplies.

“’We were suprised how easily our senior staff picked up the new system.”
– Sisleys Office Choice.

“We can already see significant efficiencies especially orders integrating from the web.”
– Austech Office Choice

“We can see efficiencies and improvements in our supply chain and accuracy delivering in full on time.”
“POS is really easy to use, we can get customers through lanes quickly leaving a positive experience and improved likely hood for them to return.”
– Browns Office Choice

ABT: “How was your training experience with ABT?”
Greg Wiggill: “ABT was very professional. The training and knowledge they gave us at head office allowed us to then go out and train our own dealers.”

ABT: “How did you find the ABT team’s performance during the implementation?”
Greg Wiggill: “We didn’t have any problems dealing with ABT.”
“ABT helped us set up an easy repeatable implementation process of cutting over from our old system. That was really important to us.”

ABT: “Now for the 64 thousand dollar question. Would you recommend ABT to others?”
Greg Wiggill: “Yes.”

If anyone is going to hear of issues with a new ERP system it’s going to be the IT Manager, so it was great to get Greg’s frank feedback.

If you would like more information regarding Pronto Xi software or a Commerce Vision eCommerce solution please contact sales@abtgroup.com.au

For more information about Office Choice Australia please see: www.officechoice.com.au/