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Jean Heybroek is a Dutch leading importer of agricultural machines. The company continuously strives to improve customer satisfaction through ensuring that deliveries are as fast and reliable as possible. As a consequence of this however, the company’s operations are subjected to additional cost and complexity. With ever increasing demand, managing the inventory was becoming an increasingly labour intensive task. As a result, Jean Heybroek decided to implement Slimstock’s inventory optimisation software, Slim4. Within six months of implementing the software, the inventory decreased considerably whilst the service level increased by almost ten percent. “Without Slim4 this would not have been possible,” states Theo van Engelen, operations manager.
“In our business, it is not possible to set aside tens of thousands of articles every year. Furthermore, we offer our products in various markets, each with their own specific challenges. As a consequence, it is really difficult to manage the inventory by exception.” Van Engelen continues: “Despite this however, we are still accountable for these exceptions.” Jean Heybroek implemented Slim4 in order to reduce the inventory value and release more working capital. However, it was important that the delivery rate also increased.
Within six months of implementing Slim4, the inventory value had decreased by € 100,000. Furthermore, for the top performing product groups, Jean Heybroek managed to reduce the inventory value by an impressive 20%. Furthermore, the service level simultaneously increased from 86 percent to an average of 95 percent. “We were expecting to see a return on investment within four years of implementing Slim4. However, we were extremely satisfied when, after just 2 years, we had earned back our initial investment,” states Van Engelen. The operation manager puts this success down to the intensive support that the specialists at Slimstock provided during the implementation phase. During the first few months of implementing Slim4, Slimstock and Jean Heybroek worked together closely in order to fine tune the parameters within the software. Van Engelen explains: “Slim4 is completely objective and only provides order advice based on the facts. Now that the software has been optimally configured for our processes, it is highly effective.”
Since Jean Heybroek started using Slim4, the supplier reliability has improved considerably. Van Engelen adds: “The customer satisfaction has increased dramatically which in turn has helped us to achieve a stronger market position. Despite this however, you can never be too satisfied.” Van Engelen now hopes to achieve further inventory reductions through managing the exceptions with even greater accuracy.
In addition, the operations manager is also working towards reducing the number of backorders as well as the requirement for express deliveries. In order to offer the best possible level of service to their customers, Jean Heybroek strives to resolve backorders on the same day, irrespective of the costs. However, these costs have to be justifiable. Van Engelen explains: “It is essential for us to have the right parts in stock at the right time. Only then can we deliver the fast and reliable service that our customers expect. With Slimstock’s expertise, I am confident that we will achieve our future objectives,” concludes Van Engelen.
“The customer satisfaction has increased dramatically which in turn has helped us to achieve a stronger market position. Despite this however, you can never be too satisfied.”
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