L.B. White has grown to become one of the world’s leading manufacturers of direct-fired heaters for the agricultural, construction, and rental industries. Approximately 50 employees support the production and global distribution of more than 50,000 SKUs from the company’s headquarters in Wisconsin. As a mid-size business, data has always been critical to the company’s decision-making process. By adding industry-matched data analytics software to its Epicor ERP 10 system helped the whole team overcome reporting challenges.
Near the time the current reporting system was coming up for renewal, LB White received information from Epicor about Epicor Data Analytics (EDA) powered by Phocas. Paul Osborne, manufacturing system analyst ordered a proof of concept, and within two days he knew it was the right solution for L.B. White.
“Seeing the system in action and how easy it is to use made the decision an easy one,” said Osborne.
Implementation went smoothly, unlike Osborne’s BI installation experience with a previous employer—which turned into a two-year project with special consultants on site.
“This was much easier, because Epicor E10 and EDA are so tightly integrated.”
The company needed a solution that was simple for all end users, could connect with various data sources, and was accessible without a VPN back to the corporate network.
EDA brought these features and more—including out-of-the-box templates for sales and inventory that Osborne’s team easily customized to review the data how they wanted.
“Epicor helped us the first time with setting up our databases, but after their initial support, we’ve managed EDA on our own,” he added. “The system is extremely easy to use, the data refreshes several times a day, and because it’s in the cloud, we can access the data from wherever and whenever we need to.”
Data analytics solution that everyone can use
Currently, L.B. White’s sales team is using EDA to monitor trends and review customer data so they can identify new sales opportunities and continue to deliver stellar customer service. Marketing is using EDA to develop campaigns and promote products, while the executives have their own dashboards that can be customized to provide snapshots of business performance. EDA’s flexibility allows both the “old school” and “new school” executives to use data how they want—from reading charts and graphs to deep dives into the numbers to view underlying business transactions.
EDA has also removed IT as the reporting bottleneck, while sales representatives working late at night or on the road no longer have trouble connecting to essential information.
“Sometimes when it comes to data and reporting, what people think they want and what they need are two different things,” said Osborne. “EDA is so flexible and easy to use that it works for everyone on our team. We’ve kept the information fresh by continually adding data to EDA, so our users can access and analyze the most current information and find answers to their questions. Our users love EDA.”
To learn more about how suppliers to the construction industry are using data analytics to stay competitive download the eBook, 4 ways to use data to improve performance.