Service

Industry Challenges

The growth of the service sector began in the wake of the Industrial Revolution, and has surged from post-World War II and onward. The growth of the services industry is certainly a result of our global increase in productivity and automation—but also in part by the increasing availability of highly technical products, where customers have demanded that services supplement not only the sale, but the product’s entire lifecycle, including installation, repair, and technical support.

Several other factors come in to play affecting growth and competition in the increasingly complex service sector:

  • Self-service is one of the most important strategies service providers use to increase their productivity and competitiveness, as well as reduce operational costs. Computerization is allowing customers, suppliers and employees to perform their tasks and collaboration without the costs associated with face-to-face service engagements.
  • Free movement of labor within the EU is increasing both corporate and personal opportunities to gain access to cheap labor, especially within the construction industry.
  • Hyper growth in the IT sector has generated a range of new services, products and opportunities. Until the year 2000, the growth was mainly within enterprise data solutions, but during the last decade, a revolution with mobile devices and consumer applications has transformed both the way both individuals and businesses view service and support.
  • Businesses are having increasing success with outsourcing software development and services to lower-cost countries, changing the cost structures, workflows, and customer experiences associated with product-related services.

Even the best responses to industry challenges can be constrained by a rigid ERP solution. Jeeves ERP is a cloud-based ERP (enterprise resource planning) software solution for small and midsize businesses with operations in Sweden. Unlike other cloud and SaaS ERP systems, Jeeves ERP delivers a powerful platform service built on a genius architecture that allows you to easily and cost-effectively implement and upgrade a highly custom system on top of a rich standard feature set. These customizations can be done in house, or by Jeeves’ professional ERP services team.

Jeeves ERP is built to address the core challenges and requirements of the services industry, with the ability to be further optimized to align with your company's unique business processes. The system comes with pre-built workflows, screen dialogues, reports, and business intelligence designed specifically for service providers—leading to a rapid system implementation, as well as a rapid system payback.

Jeeves ERP for Service

Jeeves ERP addresses the core functional requirements of growing service and professional services providers or for companies with mixed lines-of-business, including:

Anywhere Connectivity with Mobile Apps Solutions

Mobile apps solutions for service- and project-oriented operations increase the quality of administration, as well as reduce the lead time from job-scheduled to job-accepted, and from job-performed to billing. With Jeeves Mobile Apps Solutions, end users can access information, report time and material, and deliver on customer service standards.

Support for Project Management

Jeeves for Service has all the bases covered to manage projects, assignments, activities, resources, invoicing, financials, planning, inventory, and document management. Seen from the point of view of the ERP system, project-driven companies—such as professional services organizations, construction companies, and the entire contractor sector—have the same needs of steering and control. Jeeves for Service supports your requirements for several layers of services, materials, suppliers and milestones in each project.

Other key features for project management include:

  • Managing Projects
  • Revenue Recognition & Analyzing
  • Project Profitability
  • Project Tracking
  • Time & Attendance
  • Expense Allocations
  • Graphical Scheduling & Assigning Resources
  • Resource & Development Tax Credits
  • Mobile Apps for Project Reporting

Support for Service Management

Jeeves for Service supports your entire service process, including inquiry, estimation of time and materials, order management, planning, service reporting, billing, and plant maintenance. The solution allows you to directly track and manage your service technicians, minimizing administrative costs, and ensuring the most efficient and high quality delivery of service.

Other key features for service management include:

  • Customer Support & Contact Center
  • Service Contract Management
  • Graphical Scheduling of Orders & Technicians
  • Service Parts & Inventory
  • Warranty & Claim Management
  • Return Merchandise Authorization
  • Depot Repair
  • Asset Management
  • Mobile Apps for service reporting.
Jeeves is proud to serve an engaged and active community of customers. Browse our customer list to read their success stories, or read more about Jeeves ERP addresses the core challenges and functional requirements of their industries.
Customer Cases

Aimpoint

World leader of red dot sights aims for efficiency

Aimpoint´s Jeeves ERP system provides cross-functional support across sales, inventory, production, purchasing, and finance for Aimpoint’s operations in Sweden and the US.

Bodycote

Jeeves ERP holds the reins for Bodycote

Through the Jeeves ERP system, the engineering company, Bodycote, has achieved the perfect balance between functionality and adaptability.

Core Application Areas

Read more about the core application areas of Jeeves ERP.

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Core Application Areas

Vitrolife

Full traceability from production to customers worldwide

Support for fully auditable custom workflows, while maintaining the ability to upgrade to the latest versions of software without hassle or interruption were two significant factors that led Vitrolife AB to Jeeves ERP.

Vitrolife, which manufactures solutions for fertility and stem cell therapy providers – and recently spun off a line of transplant-related products – quickly realized that Jeeves ERP provided the ideal ERP solution to meet its business needs. Visibility (the capability to track lots through the entire production cycle) and flexibility (the ability to adapt to new methods as they are developed), were the essential objectives that were met in acquiring the highly customizable Jeeves ERP solution. With refrigerated, short shelf-life product lines, and with the life and welfare of patients depending on the safety of their products, Vitrolife can afford no less than to use the most effective ERP solution to support their operations. 
 
Vitrolife found it important that Jeeves ERP would support its rapid growth, and that keeping the software updated would not interfere with the company’s operations, nor require extraordinary efforts in order to retain any enhancements and customizations made to the system. In the ten years since its implementation of Jeeves ERP, Vitrolife has indeed faced that projected growth: the company has more than doubled its annual revenue over five years, reaching $52.5 million, and has added new units and companies in several countries, almost doubling its workforce during that same time.
 
”Two years after we installed Jeeves ERP in Sweden, we began installing the system in our company in Denver, and since then we’ve continued rolling out in Melbourne, Australia, and in San Diego,” said Annika Hellström Westerling at Vitrolife in Gothenburg, Sweden. ”We have also deployed Jeeves’ ICT solution (Inter Company Transaction), and the fact that we have a database in Sweden simplifies the coordination of different activities and flows in between our units. Over the past few years, we have continuously developed the initial Jeeves ERP solution and have a very flexible view of how the system can be most optimally adapted to certain operations. For example, a company that is soon to be spun off will get the latest complete Jeeves ERP version, while the rest of the group continues to work with the enhanced Jeeves ERP solution.”
 
Vitrolife and Jeeves have had a close collaboration for almost 12 years, and the partnership continues to expand: ”We feel strong support from Jeeves, and some of the things we value [is the company’s] commitment, and that consultants are always available,” said Westerling. ”Ahead of our expansion to the United States, it was also indispensable that Jeeves had established an office in Chicago with Swedish personnel available there.”
 

ABOUT VITROLIFE 

Vitrolife is an international biotechnical/medical technical group developing, producing and selling advanced products and systems for the preparation, growing, and storing of human cells, tissues, and organs. The company´s products are sold in almost 90 markets. 

 

Swedish Orphan Biovitrum

Easy upgrades despite rigid quality controls

Faced with rapid growth, Swedish Orphan Biovitrum sought an ERP system that could manage its fast-paced expansion. In Jeeves ERP, the company has reliable support for its daily operations.

Swedish Orphan Biovitrum is a Swedish company that specializes in distributing and marketing drugs for rare and life-threatening diseases. The company was founded in 1988 and, for years, has been one of Sweden’s fastest-growing enterprises. The product portfolio includes about 50 different niche products, and the company has subsidiaries in several European countries.
 
The business operations make tough demands on proper system support. Traceability, document management, and comprehensive financial reporting capabilities are a must. The company considered a variety of ERP systems in the market, looking to provide a common platform to support the integration of its different business units, a smoothly functioning solution for logistics management, and outstanding expandability. Following the procurement process, the choice fell to Jeeves ERP.
 

MULTIPLE STRENGTHS

“Jeeves has so many strengths,” said Astrid Wernered, systems manager for Jeeves at Swedish Orphan International. ”The learning curve for new employees is short, thanks to its extensive field help function. We can search every field in the entire database, it’s easy to print lists and reports, and the traceability is incredible. As a pharmaceutical company, we have to satisfy stringent requirements in terms of traceability and validation of data. We have a really great advantage with Jeeves ERP’s smart architecture and design.”
 

JEEVES ERP IS A PART OF EXPANSION

Like most Jeeves customers, Swedish Orphan Biovitrum has a small IT department for the administration of its systems. Users are good at making small changes and small adjustments that continually improve the various processes that the system supports.
 
“Today we have Jeeves installed in our Nordic companies,” said Wernered. ”In the near future, we plan to evaluate whether to deploy Jeeves ERP in more subsidiaries throughout Europe, as well as if we should introduce Jeeves ICT for intercompany transactions between the subsidiaries and warehouses to facilitate reconciliation of balances between group companies. Jeeves ERP gives us plenty of opportunities to boost our efficiency and gain better control.”
 

SIMPLE AND FAST UPGRADES

Jeeves’ philosophy of simple and rapid upgrades suits Swedish Orphan International’s IT strategy. The goal is to continuously implement upgrades at a low consultancy cost as new functionality is released to the market.
 
“We’ve chosen to always work with the latest version of Jeeves,” said Wernered. ”Since the time it takes to upgrade is so short, and we don’t need to cut back on our usual procedures, we have every reason to keep up with new developments.”
 
Briefly, an upgrade at Swedish Orphan International goes through the following steps:
  • A project plan is drawn up and tentative launch date set.
  • In parallel with the current version, the new release is installed on a test platform. This takes 1-2 days with some consultancy support.
  • The system administrator runs through the main flows, such as finance, logistics, and manufacturing, to review the changes in the new version. This takes 4-5 days without the help of consultants. At the same time, process owners run short tests, taking one day each. Once the flow tests of new procedures are completed, the final launch date is set.
  • The launch is done over a weekend and requires one day of consulting support. The master data is verified, and triggers and procedures are checked to be fully functional after launch. Afterwards, the new version is finally launched in the operating environment.
  • When the launch is complete, all the project and system documentation is updated.
Most of the tests are performed by Swedish Orphan staff themselves, based on test scenarios and test instructions provided for process owners and system administrators. The three process owners spend 2-3 days each testing, while the system administrator takes about five days. The actual duration of the project for the most recent upgrade was about two weeks.
 
“I’m still amazed that we achieved this in such a short time,”  Wernered added. ”And the fact that the cost of upgrades is so low is, of course, a big plus. Jeeves is clearly the right system for Swedish Orphan Biovitrum.”

DS Smith Packaging

DS Smith Packaging heightens service with Jeeves ERP

DS Smith Packaging abandoned its in-house developed ERP system after realizing its shortcomings. The decision to implement Jeeves ERP made DS Smith Packaging a more competitive company, with increased information management efficiency and heightened customer service levels.

DS Packaging Sweden works throughout the whole packaging chain, which includes design and production of packaging, as well as improvements to customers’ logistics. DS Smith Packaging has used the Jeeves ERP system in limited parts of its operations for several years. 
 
Jeeves had already helped DS Smith Packaging implement and develop the system to handle ordering, warehousing, invoicing, and purchasing in three DS Smith Packaging divisions, while also providing ongoing product support. Today, DS Smith Packaging is looking to expand its use of the Jeeves ERP solution to encompass the entire business.

INTEGRATING EMPLOYEES WITH OPERATIONS 

DS Smith Packaging needs a system that integrated the entire operation, offering coordination benefits across all units, as well as controlling the entire process from design to finished product. The Jeeves ERP solution is now process-optimized to support DS Smith Packaging’s business. The information flow from a business inquiry to graphics, design and calculation to the final customer order now takes place based entirely on processes built inside the Jeeves system. “The fact that we’ve now grouped our processes in one single system means that we can maintain a much higher service level,” said Håkan Andersson, IT manager at DS Smith Packaging for the past 10 years. ”Our operation is integrated and our employees are integrated.”

OPERATIONS SUPPORT IN SEVERAL AREAS 

Production is one of several functional areas in which the Jeeves ERP system benefits the company. The solution has enabled DS Smith Packaging to implement system integration within several production areas. The ERP system is now linked to the 100-meter long corrugated cardboard making machines. 
 
“In the Jeeves ERP solution, we’re directly connected to these large, corrugated cardboard making machines,” said Andersson. ”When we receive an order, it’s registered in the ERP system and then goes directly to the right machine. 
 
The unloading procedure is another business process that is made efficient with Jeeves ERP. DS Smith Packaging makes 200 million square meters of corrugated cardboard per year, but it’s impossible to have such large warehousing facilities. As soon as the product is finished, it leaves the factory and is delivered to customers or stored at forwarding agents. “We have equipped the forwarding agents with handheld computers that communicate with Jeeves ERP and show what needs to be delivered, as well as reporting [that shows] what has been delivered,” said Andersson.

CLOSE TO THE CUSTOMER 

Jeeves has worked alongside its solution partner SYSteam to achieve IT support changes throughout DS Smith Packaging. “In order to focus on developing cost-effective system support, you need close cooperation and a flexible solution that can adapt as the operation’s needs evolve,” said Anders Gidlund of SYSteam.

Pictura

Pictura says upgrading Jeeves ERP is ‘no big deal’

Pictura, Scandinavia’s largest supplier of greeting cards to retailers, invested in Jeeves ERP in 1997. Since then, Pictura has had complete control over its enormous sales volumes, which required nothing less than a robust, smoothly functioning ERP system.

Pictura was founded in 1969 and, at first, had diverse business activities revolving around the import and the sale of yarn, as well as knitting descriptions. Since the end of the 1980’s, the company has focused solely on greeting cards, wrapping paper, and gifts. Today Pictura is represented in six countries through other companies in the Pictura group and in seven more countries through partly-owned companies. Pictura’s products are also distributed in many more countries.
 

DESIRE TO KEEP UP WITH DEVELOPMENTS

Since Pictura implemented the Jeeves ERP system in 1997, the company has pursued a policy of keeping up with the system’s latest developments. Upgrades are implemented continuously, as Jeeves releases new functionality that supports and streamlines Pictura’s operations.
 
“We are always working to improve our processes,” said Magnus Arpi, vice president of Pictura. “There are always new and interesting [features] to explore.” 
 
Arpi continued: “One major initiative a few years ago that we have found incredibly useful was when we supplied our 100 salespeople in the field with handheld computers that are synched with Jeeves ERP over the 3G network. An order that used to take three days now only takes a few minutes.”

THE TYPICAL UPGRADE PROCESS 

Because Picture is focused on staying current with new releases of the standard Jeeves ERP system, the company has developed a standard upgrade process:
  • First, meetings are held to review new functionality and determine which processes will be affected.
  • Next, a decision is made on whether or not to upgrade, when, and who will be involved. Usually, a few “super users” are appointed who, in turn, teach their closest colleagues about the new version.
  • In parallel with these preparations, Pictura’s customizations are analyzed, in order to determine which ones should be reduced or deleted.
  • The new version is installed in a test environment. For 2–3 days, the application database and the change database containing Pictura’s unique settings are upgraded.
  • During the test period that follows, it has to be ensured that the main flows in order taking, delivery, price estimates, and EDI transactions work as intended. These tasks take about 2-3 weeks to complete. 
  • Finally, commissioning is often done over a weekend. On Monday, the old version is shut down and, during the following week, some adjustments are made to the production system, such as user profiles.
Pictura estimates that an upgrade, from start to finish, takes no longer than a calendar month.
 
“Considering that the work to upgrade hardly affects the rest of our operations, it’s no big deal for us to move up to a new version,” said Arpi. “I am always amazed when I hear about companies that struggle with long, drawn out upgrades full of problems. It’s obvious that we did the right thing in 1997 when we chose Jeeves ERP.” 

 

PIAB

PIAB chooses Jeeves ERP to support growth

PIAB is a power user of Jeeves ERP,  making use of all the system’s application areas. As the company has grown internationally with resellers in various countries, the Jeeves ERP solution has been the key to successful integrations. 

PIAB is a global leader in industrial vacuum technology that develops and sells solutions for improving productivity and working environments in the graphical, medical and automobile industry, among others. Being a global leader entails designing, constructing and installing vacuum solutions in all corners of the world. PIAB’s organization is therefore widely distributed, with subsidiaries and distributors in more than 50 countries. The company’s headquarters is located in Täby, outside Stockholm, Sweden.
 

HIGH DEMANDS ON ADAPTABILITY

PIAB was founded in the 1950’s and enjoyed continuous expansion and development. As the business grew over time, so did the demands on the company’s former ERP system. Growing pains were felt at the headquarters in Sweden, as well as within the operations of each of the company’s subsidiaries. 
 
”There were several other competent ERP systems that fulfilled our needs; however, Jeeves ERP offered us a system capable to face our company’s future challenges,” said Stig Andersson, who was responsible for the Jeeves project at PIAB. ”At the same time, Jeeves and its [implementation] partner understood our business and our needs.”
 

HIGH FUNCTIONALITY, BUT STILL SIMPLE

PIAB implemented Jeeves ERP across its entire Swedish operation. Today, PIAB users in Sweden have a high system competence level and run a complex business with a large number of transactions. PIAB has high expectations for its Jeeves ERP system and needs to quickly be able to search for information to provide relevant reports for decision making. The company also looks forward to increased functionality that will streamline daily tasks, as well as open up new possibilities for integrated control and business development. 
 

EFFICIENT SUPPORT FOR GLOBAL BUSINESS

When PIAB was acquired by the risk capital firm Altor, the company introduced a new growth strategy, followed by the acquisition of a large number of international resellers meant to strengthen the company’s distribution channel. Together with the support of a Jeeves implementation partner, PIAB adapted and implemented a comprehensive solution including Inter Company Transaction (ICT) management between subsidiaries, central inventory, and the parent company. ICT’s central feature reduced the number of manual registrations in the system. When an order is registered, the information is stored in a central database. Order acknowledgement, purchase orders, and invoices are then created automatically.
 
”The logistics flow is the key to success in our growing and increasingly internationalized business,” said Anderson. “The solution for transaction management between our companies, Jeeves ICT, is the most important feature in our ERP system. Today it controls and manages our entire European operation. We have a central inventory in Belgium, and our resellers can easily check inventory balances and order pumps and components.”
 
Centrally, the ICT gives an integrated picture of the inventory status, which improves PIAB’s production planning. In Germany alone, there has been a 60 percent improvement in delivery times, reduced capital tie-up, and less administration. PIAB plans to introduce similar solutions to its American business.
 

BUYING INTO THE TECHNOLOGY

“Buying Jeeves was also buying in to the idea behind the Jeeves technology,” Anderson pointed out. “[The Jeeves architecture] allows for easy integrations and fast upgrades to new versions of Jeeves ERP.”
 
Jeeves differs from most other systems since the logic is not based on source code. Instead Jeeves ERP’s logic is stored in a database, which makes Jeeves very simple to integrate with other systems. Furthermore, the architecture stores all customer-specific adaptations in a separate database. This approach leaves PIAB’s adaptations intact when upgrading the standard system. A new version can easily be installed while existing adaptations are automatically carried forward.
 

CUSTOMER-DRIVEN DEVELOPMENT 

PIAB has been a user of Jeeves ERP for years and remains satisfied. “Jeeves has developed close relationships with its partners and customers,” said Anderson, “which ensures that product development is intact through the chain. I feel that Jeeves listens to us as customers and considers our needs when developing their product concepts. That makes it possible to grow safely with Jeeves!”

Bufab

Jeeves ERP helps Bufab cover the globe

Bufab has used Jeeves ERP for almost 10 years. Today, Jeeves is used in 22 of its 33 companies, and Bufab plans to implement the ERP system in more companies as the organization grows. 

Bufab is a wholesaler that not only supplies different types of fasteners but also manufactures them. The company’s operations encompass more than 100,000 different products and employs 750 people in 25 countries.
 

INTEGRATED FOR HEIGHTENED EFFICIENCY 

Previously, Bufab used a number of proprietary acounting systems that, for the most part, were not integrated with the rest of the ERP system. To boost efficiency between the companies and within the group, Bufab started looking for a common accounting and ERP system for all its wholesaling operations. Several fellow subsidiaries in other businesses were already using Jeeves ERP, so the choice was relatively easy. “Our existing systems could not be adapted to international use,” said Joakim Karlsson, Controller at Bufab. ”With Jeeves ERP, we were able to get international support in the markets where we operate. The fact that our fellow subsidiaries were extremely satisfied with the system just made the choice easier.” 
 
Another major advantage the Jeeves ERP system offered was that the system would be easy to adapt to changes in business needs and processes. Bufab wanted to provide an efficient logistics solutions for its customers and interact with them via its ERP system, with the aim being to cut indirect costs. Today, Bufab’s processes are controlled through Jeeves ERP and include integration with customer billing, scanning of invoices from suppliers, payment flows, internal and statutory reports, accounting, and other tasks.
 

STANDARDIZED MODEL FOR FAST IMPLEMENTATION 

Each country has its own rules for the presentation of annual reports, income statements, and balance sheets, for example, to comply with regulations. Some countries have their own charts of accounts, and different reports vary in appearance. A VAT report in the Czech Republic looks very different from a Swedish VAT report. Bufab had to take all of this into account, but at the same time keep things organized in order to maintain an overview of all its companies. To achieve visibility, Bufab created a standardized model that is common for all companies, specifying how information should be structured in the system. The central idea is to follow the model as far as possible, and only make those adjustments necessary to comply with local rules and regulations.
 
“By having a common model that we follow every time we implement Jeeves ERP in a new country, we avoid having to reinvent the wheel. Instead we can take an ’assembly-line’ approach to each roll-out, allowing us to focus our time on what is unique to that particular country,” Karlsson explained. For a standardized approach to work, the underlying ERP system must be sufficiently flexible. Fortunately, Jeeves ERP has the flexibility that Bufab’s  method demands, and a new system can be rolled out quickly.
 
“Jeeves has a short implementation period compared to other systems I have been involved with,” said Karlsson. ”It doesn’t take more than about a week to implement the system in a new country.”
 
When Jeeves is to be implemented in a new country, Bufab begins by spending a few days preparing a GAP analysis. This process entails analyzing what is unique to that particular country and how the standardized model needs to be adapted to those circumstances. Then the employees get two to three days of training. After that, the new system is ready to use. To guarantee that everything is working as planned, an evaluation is done when the first monthly report is scheduled to be produced in Jeeves ERP.
 
“We have gained a broader overview of operations in the different countries,” said Karlsson. ”Now we can compare our companies with one another – for example, Spain with France with Poland – and compare key performance indicators and outcomes in a completely different way than we could before. And that helps us manage better.”
 
Bufab also has gained better decision support. Reports can be generated faster and all according to the same standards. Previously, reports from different countries might look different, which complicated matters. “Jeeves ERP satisfies the legal requirements in all countries as well as the internal requirements we make at Bufab,” Karlsson added.

 

Bodycote

Jeeves ERP holds the reins for Bodycote

Through the Jeeves ERP system, the engineering company, Bodycote, has achieved the perfect balance between functionality and adaptability.

When the engineering company, Bodycote, was going to select a new ERP system at the end of the 1990s, the company carried out a major study of the systems available in the market and chose to invest in Jeeves ERP. Ten years later, Bodycote is still successfully running the Jeeves ERP solution.
 
“Jeeves has worked beautifully as the central system where everyone can access information, so we are extremely satisfied,” said Klas Andersson, CIO at Bodycote.
 
Bodycote is an engineering company with a unique business model. The company does not manufacture any goods itself, but provides services based on expertise in materials technology, among which the hardening of steel is the biggest business segment. Customers are primarily subcontractors to the automotive industry.

SPECIAL NEEDS 

Bodycote does not manage the purchase of components and such, so it doesn’t need any functions for that. Rather, the company needs support for its service processes. A purely standardized application is not enough, because adaptations are needed to satisfy Bodycote’s requirements. The combination of standardized functionality and flexibility was exactly what Jeeves could offer. “We chose Jeeves because we saw how adaptable and open the system was, which allowed us to participate in its development and customize the system ourselves,” Andersson said.
 
One of the demands on the system in Bodycote’s procurement process was that all information had to be available to everyone who needed it. Previously a local manager could sit and do his own calculations in Excel that others could not access – which was not very efficient. “A manager sitting at the center of things should be able to get the same numbers at the same time as a manager working closer to the customer, said Andersson. ”With Jeeves, everyone works directly in the same system and has access to the same information, which enables us to work more efficiently.”
 
Because Bodycote was able to remove the functions it didn’t intend to use, while keeping those needed to support the company’s unique business operations, the people at Bodycote succeeded in building a thoroughly efficient system with Jeeves ERP. One example of this is how fast the system can handle a customer order. Andersson noted, “We don’t spend more than about 30 seconds on each customer order nowadays.”
 
Today Bodycote runs Jeeves ERP at 13 different work sites. Customer support, order processing, subsidiary ledgers, accounting, deviation tracking, and quality reporting are a few of the jobs handled using the system.

ERP SYSTEM FOR EVERYONE 

At Bodycote, staff in all functional areas use Jeeves: about 150 of the company’s 250 employees. Of course, that makes tough demands on the system’s user-friendliness. “As with all ERP systems, you have to get over a little threshold before you learn how to use it, but today, no one would want to replace Jeeves ERP with any other system,” Andersson said. “User satisfaction is high.”
 
The user-friendliness is also noticeable in how simple it is to adapt the system to new needs. Bodycote is part of an international group employing about 6,000 people, and the head office often demands that new reports be created. With many other ERP systems, clients are forced to hire a consultant to make such changes. Bodycote doesn’t have to. “We can add new fields and specify new logical operations in no time at all. What other people need separate systems for, we can include in our ordinary system. That is a major strength of Jeeves ERP,” Andersson said.
 
The people at Bodycote are extremely satisfied with how Jeeves works and are about to upgrade to the next generation of the product. Among other improvements, the company will use a role-based interface and introduce e-billing and e-signing. Perhaps one of the most interesting aspects is that the new version of Jeeves allows Bodycote to document business and operational processes, and link user instructions with the processes in a whole new way.
 
“With the next version of Jeeves, we’ll get well structured and easily accessible documentation, and our users will be able to access process descriptions and find out how to work even more easily, making them more efficient,” Andersson explained.

 

Alfa Laval

Jeeves ERP: One of Alfa Laval’s global systems

Alfa Laval has designated Jeeves ERP as its dominant production system, making it the backbone of the group’s manufacturing process, with the system handling purchasing, logistics, and production.

Alfa Laval currently has 1,400 Jeeves ERP users, established in 28 installations on three continents and supporting Alfa Laval’s manufacturing processes in 11 factories around the clock.
 
Jeeves ERP is one of Alfa Laval’s global ERP systems. The company’s collaboration with Jeeves began almost 20 years ago, with a logistics solution in the heat exchanger division. Since then, Jeeves has earned ever-increasing trust. Peter Löfberg, global product manager, said, “I was here when we chose Jeeves in 1994. We took a chance back then, because Jeeves was a little, creative company with a new idea: an ERP system that was database-centric. Being able to provide our users with a Windows-based solution was appealing, of course, but the key advantage was working in SQL with a system structured around an open database. Since then, Alfa Laval has changed and developed in a number of ways. Jeeves has, too. Nowadays, our system has much more comprehensive functionality and is run throughout our international business operations. But the foundation, the database-centric architecture, remains. This is one of the most important factors for Jeeves ERP’s success, and for Alfa Laval being so satisfied.”
 

THE BEST OF BOTH WORLDS 

Jeeves is based on a development philosophy that uses two separate databases when the ERP system is rolled out: one database for the standard system, and one for customer-specific modifications. The standard system offers a rich basic functionality and, in contrast to many other ERP systems, customers can easily and efficiently customize the standard system themselves and manage their customizations throughout the life of the system, without compromising quality or their ability to upgrade. 
 
Joakim Ryrstedt, responsible for Alfa Laval’s various ERP systems, said, ”We put a high priority on having firm control and influence over how we use and develop our ERP systems in our organization. With Jeeves, we have the best of both worlds: a standardized system with good functionality and, at the same time, a solution we can adapt in those components for which we have special needs. Through the years, we have carried out many of our own modifications in Jeeves ERP in areas where we really want to be the best and believe we have unique needs. The latest customization we are working on is a user interface for computer-controlled trucks.”
 

RAPID PACE OF UPGRADES 

Alfa Laval has kept pace with Jeeves ERP’s development and often upgrades in order to always have access to a modern system. Ryrstedt, who has experience working with other ERP systems as well, explained that ”Jeeves ERP is surprisingly easy to upgrade, yet it’s not difficult to port the customizations we’ve made ourselves.” 
 
Alfa Laval has developed several modifications to include when converting to a newer version. These are automatically included in the new version because they are managed in their own database separate from the standardized system.
 

CUSTOMIZATION TO MANAGE WAREHOUSE PICKING 

Evidence of how responsive Jeeves is to the demands of business operations includes a customized application for Alfa Laval’s computer-controlled trucks. By making modifications in Jeeves, the group has created its own solution alongside the standardized system, thus satisfying the special needs of these operations.
 
“Using our computer-controlled trucks, we want to pick and handle articles in our warehouse while having constant access to up-to-date information about and the status of all articles in stock. With this new application, which we built ourselves using Jeeves ERP’s developer tools, we can optimize the picking rounds for our trucks and avoid them having to make several circuits around the warehouse,” explained Löfberg. Jeeves ERP offers a standardized solution for the mobile execution of picking, moving, and stock-taking. However, Alfa Laval regarded the solution as optimized for larger warehouses and as being more complex than what they needed. Instead the company chose to develop its own modification: “It is one of Jeeves ERP’s strengths that its architecture allows us to make this type of customization,” Löfberg said. ”When we upgrade in the future, we don’t have to re-do the work we’ve put into producing this solution, because it will automatically be ported into the new version.” 

 

Raphael d’Halluin, Managing Director, France

As Managing Director, France, Raphael d’Halluin is responsible for the strategic planning and execution of the company’s operations in France, including sales, marketing and services. Raphael began his partnership with Jeeves in May 2005 when, upon founding his own venture company and through a joint venture with Jeeves Information Systems AB, he established Jeeves France and introduced the Jeeves product to the French market. In June 2009, following four years of solid results, Jeeves Information Systems acquired Jeeves France, with Raphael continuing as managing director.

Raphael kicked off his career as a Sage ERP Solutions sales representative. He advanced to the position of sales manager at Navision, where he was instrumental in the set up and development of the company’s French subsidiary. After Navision was acquired by Microsoft and became part of the Microsoft Business Solutions division in 2002, Raphael was responsible for developing the sales and partner channels and extending brand name awareness of the Dynamics AX product line, one of Microsoft’s ERP systems that has been rebranded as Microsoft Dynamics. Raphael left Microsoft in 2005 to launch his venture company.

Raphael studied economics at a Business School in Paris and holds a masters degree in economics and innovation from Maastricht University and Universidad Autónoma de Madrid.

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