GS-Hydro is one of our many customers who have realized the benefits of using UDK’s certified project managers. “Besides being very professional and structured, they distinguish themselves by always providing the optimum solutions,” says Even Kristiansen, project owner at GS-Hydro.
GS-Hydro manufactures, develops, and delivers leak-free and reliable piping solutions for challenging conditions, including for the offshore and marine industries and for several land-based industries. The company is present in 17 countries and has over 600 piping specialists.
Last spring, a project was started to allow receipt of electronic customer orders placed through an EDI portal that are then sent straight to GS-Hydro’s ERP system using, among other solutions, Movex eCollaborator.
“We had an old solution that we wanted to streamline so that we can focus on other things and avoid having to manually process orders as much as possible,” says Even Kristiansen, project owner at GS-Hydro.
According to Even, even before management approval of the project, UDK was seen internally as professional and quickly rose to the top as the natural choice for supplier.
“We knew that UDK had previously worked with the purchasing department. An internal dialogue with the department resulted in a number of positive reviews about UDK’s project management and solution. We informed management that there was a platform and a partnership in place which made it unnecessary to look at a third-party solution.”
There were three parties involved in the project, which began last spring: GS Hydro, which is also the project owner, UDK has been responsible for order processing, and Apper has been responsible for the EDI portal.
Ståle R Moe at UDK was the project manager and Carina Nilsson led with her expertise in M3. UDK’s touchstones for the project have been structure, clarity, and focus on results.
UDK provides its project managers with the support and training they need to develop in their roles. The company has also developed its own project methodology that is constantly being improved. Several project managers decided to work toward certification to develop in their roles. A certification is not an education, but rather a validation of existing knowledge. Through project management certification, project managers expand their networks and gain proof of their expertise that is recognized internationally.
The certification process involves several stages, including the self-assessment of their skills and a written test. Moreover, the last few years, UDK has had an internal network where project managers support each other with methods, documentation, and other areas. UDK has also developed an internal toolbox for project management.
“They have been structured from day one and have established intermediate goals, they’ve provided timely feedback, and met every deadline,” says Even Kristiansen.
UDK’s project managers are certified according to IPMA, which is the world’s first project management association, founded in 1965. IPMA stands for International Project Management Association and is an umbrella organization for project management associations worldwide. UDK provides its project managers with the support and training they need to develop in their roles. The company has also developed its own project methodology that is constantly being developed.
Mats Juhlin, solution manager for ERP systems at GS-Hydro, is also happy with how the project has been managed. “They have had a good structure, project design, and project planning with good control and plan for the project and clear control for who does what and when. In addition, the documentation has been good. These factors are important in many ways. Above all, they ensure that costs do not spiral out of control. Having a partner who we can work with also allows us to complete our followup planning and final planning in a good way.”
Most important is that UDK has provided GS-Hydro with the solutions they were looking for.
“An important factor has been that they always see more possibilities than limitations. UDK also distinguishes itself by presenting the most optimal solutions in every part of the project. They make sure they offer feasible proposals and have delivered a very good solution that meets our specifications,” according to Even Kristiansen.
He is also very pleased with UDK’s well-organized and effective meetings, that UDK has been willing to handle much of the communications through email, with UDK’s quick response to questions, and that UDK has asked critical questions.
“This is really how we want it. Everyone has greater needs and desires than what they included in their budgets. That is why it has been so valuable that UDK has made sure to prioritize and to ask good control questions, such as ‘do you really need this?’.”
Both Even and Mats are very pleased with how the project has been run. Mats points to the importance of meeting deadlines. “It is incredibly important and not very common in the industry. Projects often suffer delays, especially since the partner leading the project is often paid based on time and may not always have the right incentives to stay on schedule. But UDK has met the deadlines and delivered what we ordered. That’s worth a lot.”
Even would like to go further and expand collaboration with UDK in other areas. “This has been a very successful project with good project management and lots of good people were involved. The success has grown out of the cooperation at the technical levels. I am going to be sharing with others at GS-Hydro that UDK is a professional organization with excellent project management.”
UDK has several project managers certified at B level, which is the second highest of the four levels going from A to D. To achieve B level, the individuals needs 55 months of experience in managing projects as a starting point, and every person who wants certification is evaluated in three main areas: behavior, method, and competence and experience. Among other things, they have self-assessed and weighted their traits in a thick compendium. The entire certification process takes about nine months at the B level and consists of four parts: a self-assessment, a test, a project management report, and a workshop with interviews and group work.
GS-Hydro Success Story pdf:
UDK’s Mobile Truck Application (MTA) solution gives Tikkurila in Sweden, Poland, and Finland greater control, increased flexibility, and greatly improved delivery quality from their stock. “We have completely eliminated incorrect product deliveries. Now, only the amounts might be wrong,” says Patrik Stattin, Project Coordinator at Tikkurila’s warehouse in Nykvarn, Sweden.
Tikkurila is Scandinavia’s leading provider of user and environmentally friendly finishing products for consumers, professionals, and industry. The company aims to become the market leader in Eastern Europe and Russia, too.
Its product line includes indoor paints, varnishes, and stains; products for wood, masonry, and metal surfaces; and services related to painting. Tikkurila also produces paints and coatings for the metal and wood industries. Tikkurila’s brands include Becker, Alcro, Dickursby, Teks, Tikkurila, and Vivacolor.
In Sweden, Tikkurila’s production facility and central warehouse are located in Nykvarn, Sörmland. The plant began commercial operation in 2007 and is one of Europe’s most environmentally friendly paint factories.
Previously, picking lists and labels were printed out prior to dispatching an order from the warehouse.
“The picking lists were printed in the morning and sorted, which took a long time. What’s more, we had a queuing system that meant we couldn’t adjust a delivery during the day to include any changes a customer wanted to make, or to expedite collection if the delivery truck came a little earlier. Everything that was printed in the morning was set in stone,” explains Patrik Stattin, Project Coordinator at Tikkurila’s warehouse in Nykvarn.
Even so, he stresses that this was not why they wanted to make a change. Instead, it was Tikkurila’s desire to improve its delivery quality.
“Previously, we had no way to verify that the correct items were actually being taken off the shelf. There was always the risk that labels would disappear during transport, too. We also wanted to gain direct control over our stock levels.”
There were some changes that were especially important to introduce:
“In addition to being able to change orders up until they are put together for delivery, we also wanted to be able to add backordered items that had been delivered or produced during the day. The task of developing the solution was partly given to UDK, but Tikkurila also received quotes from two other suppliers. Ultimately, it came down to choosing between systems that would have to be modified, or a fully customized solution from UDK.”
“Purchasing and redesigning the finished systems proved to be more expensive than UDK’s solution. Having realized this, we then developed a clear specification of what we wanted from UDK’s solution.”
At that point, Tikkurila began verifying the basic data and ensuring that everything was correct, especially when it came to variations of the same product and packages. Wireless coverage at the warehouse was also measured. After some additions and adjustments, it was time to start working with the MTA test environment that UDK set up to work with Movex.
Using a finger scanner, they scanned the existing EAN code and made sure that the MTA found the correct item number in Movex/M3.
“We had to test and verify the MTA in combination with Movex to make sure that everything worked.”
The solution was implemented in several stages, with the first step coming in February 2011 in connection with Tikkurila’s own stores.
“Just to be safe, we wanted to make sure that everything worked flawlessly in our own stores first.”
In May 2011, the picking solution was implemented in all stores in Norway, Sweden, and Denmark. In December 2013, the company began using the MTA for deliveries of whole pallets and for moving products internally. The same software, but with a different application, was also launched in Finland.
“Today, the MTA is used in Sweden, Poland, and Finland, with only small, local modifications for each country based on their specific needs. Our warehouse manager in Poland decided to implement the solution after visiting us, and Finland did the same shortly afterwards.”
For Tikkurila, the solution has delivered many very positive effects.
“One of our most important Key Performance Indicators (KPI) is how many lines are picked in a row without error. Previously, we were at 1,100 lines. Now, we’re up to 3,600 lines and errors are only ever the wrong amounts, never the wrong product. This means we avoid returns, which means a huge financial saving and a great way to build trust with our customers. What’s more, we can now maintain a more consistent stock level.”
The solution also lets us see where in the job queue we are and who is picking which order.
“In the past, we didn’t have the same overview of how much work had been done. Today, we can track the position of each order being picked in the warehouse. We can also change the priority of orders.”
Today, the MTA is integrated with the transportation management system.
“We can send XML data directly to the system and from there create shipping labels with the correct package type. In the past, there was a risk that an order that should have been listed as a package would be listed as an entire pallet or vice versa. We also achieve 100 per cent accuracy on delivery numbers via XML and avoid the risk of input errors that can lead to a delivery going to the wrong customer. Warehouse staff no longer need to get off the truck to enter shipping labels into an extra terminal.”
Clearly, quality has increased, but what about efficiency?
“There was a concern that efficiency might suffer, but that didn’t happen. In fact, we have improved our efficiency. Just looking at the measurement of lines per hour, we achieve more now than before. One interesting effect of the increase in quality is that we have had to revise our piecework rate: It’s gone from being a combination of speed and minimal errors to disregarding errors altogether, since almost no errors are made any more. That’s a direct result of this solution.”
Dependability is also good, with only a few short interruptions in recent years.
By replacing its existing Ibrix system, Tikkurila gained a more flexible and stable solution.
“By replacing Ibrix, we gained a fully supported and upgradeable system for refilling picking locations and handling full pallets. What we wanted to do in Ibrix, we have now achieved in our current solution and can, for example, easily see if full pallets aren’t fully allocated. Above all, we can print address labels–something we couldn’t do with Ibrix.”
UDK has long been the main partner and support provider for Tikkurila’s business system, Movex/M3. As noted earlier, however, this solution was selected through a procurement round that UDK won.
“Our relationship with UDK works well. I have learned not to bring ready-made solutions with me to meetings with UDK. If I describe what we need, UDK often suggests a better solution than what I would have been able to come up with.”
Stattin is particularly pleased with his collaboration with Jan Åström, a consultant at UDK.
“Jan has very broad expertise and a good understanding of the business. He is good at seeing how customized solutions impact both other systems and the business in general. Moreover, UDK is good at providing support when we need to check and update our internal processes,” concludes Stattin, Project Coordinator at Tikkurila Nykvarn.
UDK, together with Apper delivered a SIM solution to Indexator Rototilt Systems. SIM stands for Supply Integration Manager and automate purchasing processes.
It is a platform for providers that communicates directly with the M3 business system. With SIM, the user can increase control and safety in the material flow and reduce administrative burdens. UDK and Indexator has worked together for many years. It is still too early to say anything about the effects the solution will bring, but most likely there will be improvements in the workflow.
Appers SIM solution was suggested by UDK. It is an established solution used by satisfied customers. It is an easy to use platform that streamlines and standardizes the communication with suppliers, transporters and customers. Through an integration between the ERP system M3 and SIM you can integrate business contacts regardless of the technical level they are on. Through the automation of processes eliminate manual errors and work more efficient.
Infor has updated Infor M3 with more than 1,000 improvements since the last major release, delivering focused new functionality and ease of upgrade to the distribution, equipment, food & beverage, chemicals, and fashion industries.
Read the article:
Do not miss the MAF conference days of the annual meeting March 25 to 26 at the Clarion Arlanda Airport hotel.
A lot of news and experiences!
How about industry-specific sessions with the latest news for the product and functionality range of Food & Beverage, Manufacturing, Distribution and Equipment. New this year is a number of training sessions in the conference program. Henrik Billgren from Infor will tell you about the latest in Infor 10x and M3 version 13. In the evening of March 25 there will be dinner with entertainment. The morning after David Batra will start up followed by Infor’s creative advertising agency Hook & Loop. This and much more is promised at this year’s conference days.
Information and register: www.movex.org/MAFSolution_2014 (only available in swedish)
Movex/M3 user group networking meeting at Lantmännen Maskin in Umeå. Get an insight into their customer portal project based on Ibrix for aftermarket processes – from goals to effects. UDK will present solutions and forward thinking regarding Ibrix. Come and join!
Day: Tuesday January 28, 2014
Location: Lantmännen Maskin AB, Industrial Road 2, Umeå
Price: 500 SEK (cost)
For more information and registration (only in swedish):
North group meets at Lantmännen Maskin in Umeå
UDK took part in the Infor on the Road event held in Copenhagen together with other participants from Nordic countries. Customers, resellers, and Infor’s management were all in attendance. The day’s meeting confirmed that Infor is on the right track.
In the US, it’s referred to as “the world’s largest startup”. Infor is looking to the future and is set to release Version 13 of M3, alongside an expansion of the 10x family, which includes new interfaces and functions focused on market developments. The following are just a few among them:
• Complete procedures for upgrading your current Movex/M3 environment to the latest version
• User interface
•Motion, mobile apps
• Ming.le, which provides Facebook functionality in ERP
• Cloud. Run your ERP in a cloud solution with no need for local hardware servers
• Product configurator designed to integrate fully with ERP
• Rhythm, a whole new solution for e-commerce
Would you like to know more? Contact us at UDK for a more detailed demonstration.
A new release of Infor M3 (Movex) is now being launched, Version 13.1. This is the largest release in M3’s history, offering an entirely new user experience as well as loads of new functionality and integrations. “Fantastic work and this will move the needle for Infor. Great product, great team.” Writes Infor CEO Charles Phillips in a letter to all involved in M3’s development.
With the release of the new version, M3 has demonstrated that the system is an important member of the Infor family. More information about the release coming soon!
During Infor users event, Inforum 2012, it was announced that the company intends to invest a total of two billion dollars on R & D (Research and Development) this year.
The pace will continue to be aggressive and the number of new products to be increased with more than 45 percent, new features with more than 60 percent and new integrations with more than 50 percent. Investments on the cloud (via Amazon), development of social functions and the merging of Infor 10s PLM Process and Lawson M3 ERP Enterprise for a complete solution. Infor bought notoriously Swedish Lawson last year, and they will invest heavily in developing the M3 suite. They will also in future years launch more products, features, enhancements and integrations than ever before. It also means that the company intends to hire more than 500 software developers and designers.