Jacopa finance director Peter Sargent made an impressive presentation to an attentive audience at the IFS World Conference in Gothenburg recently, with an authoritative overview of the rollout of the Company’s highly successful enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution.
A record number of attendees at the popular event, from across the IFS spectrum, had gathered for three days in the Swedish city to hear about new products and listen to keynote presentations from around the world.
Peter introduced Jacopa, its brands and activities, and described the reasons why the wastewater treatment systems and solutions experts needed a new ERP system. He explained that the company had undertaken a requirement audit that highlighted the functionality and scalability required, and this had identified the preference for a Cloud-based solution.
In fact, the Company looked at over 70 ERP systems which specialised in either professional services or manufacturing but found very few which catered for both effectively.
Jacopa developed a ‘long shortlist’ of solutions, but finally settled on IFS as it fulfilled all of the functionality criteria. As Peter explained: “IFS Applications was chosen because we wanted a fully-managed solution. Most products could be hosted, but very few offered the comprehensive solution that IFS did. IFS Applications would also take less configuration straight ‘out of the box’.
Outlining the reasoning behind the company’s decision, he noted: “You can do most things in-house, but we wanted to leave it to the experts. After all, we are an engineering company, not an IT company.”
Peter praised the IFS system, explaining: “Operationally, everyone logged in and started using it and I got good numbers out – all on day one”. He noted that some of the staff had not wanted to use the previous ERP system because it was too difficult. “IFS is more intuitive and has been designed by our own users, so it was in line with what we actually needed.”
Within the UK regulated water industry, there is an on-going focus on delivering more effective and efficient services. Jacopa believe their business needs strong IT and processes behind it to support supply change and align to the challenge by driving productivity improvements.
An important aspect of Jacopa’s productivity efficiency is the connectivity of one business process with another. Here, the ability to innovate around an enterprise resource planning system that uses workflow templates and enables the Company to connect business information across workflows is a key business advantage. Jacopa also have remote input with ready access and use of data for user and management tasks enabling rapid decision making.
In conclusion, Peter stressed the ease of use: “I think back to when I was first asked if I would like to talk at the World Conference, and my first response was that I haven’t got much to say; it just works!”