When sporting apparel company Canterbury International needed to update internal processes to give its sales force real-time access to stock information, the specialisation of Queensland-based integrator Sundata was key in several ways.
In addition to developing a $70,000 solution that provides Canterbury's mobile sales force with immediate access to customer accounts and stock information, and enables them to order online, Sundata was able to help the company implement the new system across Australia.
Best known for producing football jerseys, Canterbury has been running its core business applications on RS/6000s for a number of years, and Sundata developed its solution to also operate on the platform.
IBM's Netfinity servers are also being used to store Canterbury's customer and stock infor-mation, which is replicated onto a Lotus Notes database for access by mobile sales represent-atives, irrespective of their physical location, Con Kakanis, a Sundata director, told ARN.
The Web-enabled solution is also designed to benefit Canterbury's customers, according to Kakanis, with a new CD catalogue allowing them to design their own jerseys and eventually place orders online.
According to Canterbury officials, the new technology and extensive staff training provided by Sundata are already yielding a competitive advantage for the company.
"If we visited a customer who wanted to order 1000 jerseys for a golf day, we can look up on our notebooks the inventory we have at any given moment, then provide that customer with costings on the product, and details on when they can expect to receive it, immediately," said Grant Parker, Canterbury's NSW state manager. "Previously, we would have had to wade through a huge printed report which could be a week out of date or, alternatively, place calls to the warehouse to check the number of garments we had in stock."
As part of the Canterbury project, Sundata also helped to install Lotus Notes and e-mail functionality across the company. This too has improved Canterbury's ability to service its customers, according to Parker.
"Many of our customers also use e-mail, which means they can send orders, request quotes or communicate with us at all times," he said. "This has greatly improved our communication with our customers and cut down on the time we used to spend faxing off the information."
Sundata officials expect to complete the current phase roll-out by the end of the year, but further developments at Canterbury are also planned.