Broekhof's mission is to create innovative, consistent added value with packaging and decorative materials for the flower and plant sector. Since the business was first founded over 40 years ago, Broekhof in now in the process of expanding globally.
- ACHIEVEMENTSReduced inventory levels while increasing availability
Broekhof sharply cuts excess stock
As a result of steady growth, Broekhof were at risk of expanding beyond the capacity of their existing premises. With Slim4, the wholesaler can now actively control the quality of their inventory and in the first year alone, excess inventory was reduced by more than €700,000 while availability increased. "In less than 12 months, we have already recouped our investment," expresses Finance and Operations Director, Gerard Wijma, with great satisfaction.
For 42 years, Broekhof have been crafting packaging and decorative materials for the flower and plant sector. "Customers can come to us for absolutely everything, except for the actual flowers and plants," states Wijma. The wholesale product range is growing by an average of 5 percent and the business now offers over 19,000 SKUs. Of these, there are about 12,000 sku’s are stocked at the facility in Noordwijkerhout, the Netherlands.
"As a result of this growth, the volume of stock we held meant we were at risk of outgrowing our existing premises. As long as we keep the right products in stock at all times, this is not too much of a problem. However, given that 40 percent of our assortment is subject to seasonal fluctuations, this is difficult for us." Wijma continues. To improve the quality of their inventory, Broekhof invested in the inventory optimisation software, Slim4. Within just 1 year, the investment has already been recouped. Since implementing Slim4, both the need for urgent purchases and overall inventory levels fell sharply. Furthermore, surplus stock decreased from more than 2 million euros to 1.3 million euros.
“As we have previously measured in another way, it is difficult to say how big of an increase in availability we had achieved. However, we are now hitting the 95 percent mark; a huge increase on the previous norm." Wijma is convinced that there is plenty more potential once all the buyers have complete faith to rely on the ordering advice that Slim4 generates. "I understand that it is difficult but figures do not lie.”
Bringing peace to the whole business
Thanks to Slim4, the buying team at Broekhof can now add far more value. Through focusing on exceptions, this allows the team to spend more time on strategic sourcing and negotiations with suppliers. In turn, this has created time savings of up to 50%. Due to the improved quality and availability of stock, Broekhof required less inventory to achieve the same sales. “This has helped bring peace to not only to the purchasing, logistics and sales teams but also to all departments within the business.” Wijma emphasises the importance of the decline in the number of lost sales: “In our industry, the risk of failure is high. If we are not able to deliver what the customer needs, the customer will go to a competitor. If that competitor satisfy their requirements, there is always a risk that the customer will go to the competitor the next time. However, luckily, that competitor doesn’t have Slim4, so on that level, we are way ahead of our competitors".
“This has helped bring peace to not only to the purchasing, logistics and sales teams but also to all departments within the business.”