Izoref (https://izoref.ro) recently celebrated 40 years in business in the field of construction and refractory lining materials. Clients from all over Europe use their products (Holcim, LaFarge, Saint Gobain, Tenaris etc). An impressive number of companies that work with raw materials such as silicon, coke, crude iron, steel, and aluminum reach out to Izoref for consultancy and related services. The company, which employs around 70 people in Cluj-Napoca, reported a turnover rate of over 4.3 million euro in 2020.
As they became a commercial success, Izoref realized that it was time to digitalize its business processes and modernize its management information system. The company had been using spreadsheet applications and simple resource management programs empirically, which made it impossible to correlate data between their sales, production, and financial departments. Additionally, management had been deprived of a holistic perspective of the company’s activities. At an operational level, differences between recorded values and real life were a common occurrence, which meant that employees would lose a lot of time identifying and correcting errors. This situation also affected the company as a whole because it generated delays in project delivery and the billing of services. It also created credibility issues.
The transition to a modern ERP
In 2019, Izoref’s management decided it was time for change, and their solution consisted of the implementation of an integrated enterprise resource planning system. After analyzing the main ERP system providers and asking for references among business associates, Izoref chose SAP Business One and System Innovation Romania.
SAP Business One selection criteria
- Proper functional coverage with modules and features able to generate business operation integration
- Positive feedback from multiple business partners
- Large references pool, both locally and internationally, from different verticals
- Good business knowledge and consultancy skills at System Innovation Romania
- Fast Return on Investment (ROI) projection
Izoref implemented SAP Business One in 2020. The project began with a detailed analysis which involved stakeholders from its main departments and external consultants. Key processes and functionality problems were identified. The proposed solutions, such as correlated work streams among all company departments, aimed to make operations more efficient through digitalization. During the next stages, these streams and processes were mapped in SAP Business One. Then, data sets were prepped and imported, and finally users were introduced to the application. In the end, the system led to a documented approach to business processes, imposed a stronger work ethic, and contributed to making everyday activities faster and more transparent.
SAP Business Online benefits
Digitalizing business processes through the implementation of SAP Business One immediately improved Izoref’s activity. The company integrated all its operations in one informatic system with a unique database. SAP Business One provides a clear and fast status report of all important aspects: stocks, production orders, items which need to be restocked, delivery deadlines, client orders, payment deadlines etc. The system displays the optimal stock of raw materials and signals when it’s time to restock: it shows what products should be ordered and when so that they arrive at the right time. The entire order approval process is centralized and transparent.
Moreover, employees can now group several orders and deliver them with the same transport, which reduces costs. To simplify operations, employees scan barcodes to signal that they have received, deposited, or delivered products. The system can also calculate the duration of production stages and delivery dates, which allows Izoref to make trustworthy promises to final beneficiaries. SAP Business One is also an effective management tool, which can calculate profitability at a project, client, or resource allocation level. This kind of nuance was impossible to achieve beforehand.
The elimination of previously encountered errors from manual data entry led to an improved billing process which is accurate and transparent. Because employees no longer have to type in information in several files and systems, the company now cashes in payments much faster. It is also much easier to track cash flow, and the consolidation of data helped the company achieve the expected financial predictability. SAP Business One also features management reports, which support business decisions with real time data.
- Business process digitalisation
- Enhanced visibility and full control over operations
- Streamlined and documented business processes, integrated workflows between all departments
- Careful monitoring of profitability for each sale, customer or project by transparent breakdown of costs
- Less errors in data manipulation and redundant entries
- Financial predictability by consolidating sales, production, delivery and invoicing data in a single source
- Faster access to reports and analysis in order to sustain business decisions with real time insights
“With SAP Business One we carefully plan production and make predictions. We always know the real situation and we make the best business decisions in a timely manner.” Cosmin TODORAN, Operations Manager, Izoref