• July 1, 2007
  • By Colin Beasty(former) Associate Editor, CRM Magazine

AMPRO Blows a CRM Whistle

AMPRO, a manufacturer and distributor of sporting goods and promotional merchandise for athletic teams, was forced to call a foul on its old-school enterprise resource planning system. The company wanted to better serve a demanding client base, which has sophisticated needs, and to maintain its industry leadership. AMPRO's handle on its inventory was sloppy and required an upgrade to a role-based customer portal with multiple access levels to the businesses ordering its products. Client managers wanted not only to see order status, but also to approve orders and monitor employee standings. "Under Everest, our old system, we were answering no to one-third or one-half of our prospects' questions about our customer portal capabilities," says Harry Cooper, manager of information systems at AMPRO. "Previously, if you wanted to get an order status the sales rep would have to go from the art department to the screening department to the production floor and ask everyone if they had completed their part. You needed to see five or 10 people trying to find out the status." Rather than overhauling Everest, which would have required additional IT infrastructure the company didn't want, AMPRO migrated its entire operation to NetSuite over a three-day weekend, a large time savings over the three-month period the company had been expecting. AMPRO bolstered its ability to expand into the corporate merchandise market by adopting NetSuite, and rapidly deployed client access portals that business customers had been demanding. "Now we're able to go after businesses that we probably would never have been able to sell to," Cooper says. Improved order status tracking is keeping customers informed and satisfied, as well. "With the entire company using NetSuite, a status lookup now takes a few seconds." The accuracy and precision of inventory data have also improved, allowing sales reps and buyers to make more informed decisions.
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