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The DilemmaAfter purchasing the company in March 2002, President Mark Knopke was chomping at the bit to grow the business. He wanted to increase the number of field technicians and revenue, but an outdated software system stagnated progress by creating excessive paperwork and requiring manual data entry.
"We were entering purchase orders into a spreadsheet and then manually matching the orders up with jobs," said Knopke. "Then, payroll was added into the equation. It was difficult to keep track of everything."
Furthermore, the legacy system served the company's former specialty of construction equipment rather than its current service work focus. Having prior experience with converting to a new software system and understanding the ROI value of having the most effective solution, he plowed ahead to finding an ideal application for Brothers Mechanical - one that would give his company access to real-time job information and the ability to enter information once and see it reflected seamlessly throughout the system - from accounting to the dispatch board.
The SolutionAfter meeting with several software companies, Brothers Mechanical selected Data-Basics' SAM Pro Enterprise solution. "One of the great things about SAM Pro is that all modules are fully integrated, which would allow us to access information quickly from the service contracts, dispatch board, payroll, billing, and purchasing modules in just a few clicks," said Knopke. The system is also designed for the service industry and is unified with construction billing. Brothers Mechanical implemented Data-Basics' SAM Pro Enterprise in October 2002. After a successful testing period, the system went live in January 2003.
Results"It's amazing what having access to integrated job information in real-time and automating manual processes can do for a business," Knopke said. Brothers Mechanical has efficiently increased its number of field technicians from 13 at the time of software implementation to 22 currently. And, there was no need to hire additional overhead personnel to accommodate the new technician volume.
SAM Pro Enterprise has allowed Brothers Mechanical to eliminate a large amount of paperwork, as it previously took three weeks to send an invoice out to a customer once the job was complete. Brothers Mechanical now completes the task within one week, which significantly improves the company's cash flow.
"We definitely wouldn't be able to handle the paperwork load without the software," added Knopke. "SAM Pro has been a critical component in our growth and in our ability to serve our customers."
Publication date: 11/24/2003