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Acumatica implemented in just 10 days, helps Caswell Inc. run stores efficiently

For the past 15 years, Lance Caswell ran his family’s small online retail companies using Everest Software, a business management software package that was expensive, difficult to upgrade and whose updates led to several days of outages. When Caswell decided not to renew his software license, he had just a few weeks to find a new solution.

Because Caswell Inc. is a small business, he first looked at QuickBooks—but it quickly became apparent that QuickBooks couldn’t handle three entities and didn’t have automatic processing he desired. Caswell decided to implement Acumatica’s ERP—a move he did in just four weeks—which made his business much more efficient.

About Caswell Inc.

Location: Headquartered in Lyons, NY

industry: Retail & eCommerce

Application Replaced: QuickBooks and Other

Website: http://www.caswellplating.com
http://www.britishfasteners.com
http://www.mud-skipper.com

Key results

  • Reduced invoicing from a full day’s work every day to one hour a day, freeing staff to focus on more strategic issues
  • Eliminated days of downtime caused by software upgrades
  • Reduced need for IT support by 10 hours a month
  • Gained insight into inventory levels
  • Gained agile platform for growth of several companies without adding accounting headcount

Challenges

Caswell needed:

  • A replacement for their Everest system … in less than 4 weeks
  • The ability to update their new system without headaches
  • Multi-company capabilities

Acumatica relieves me of so much IT responsibility, which is a huge worry off my mind and time savings for me. As a small business, we really can’t afford to hire a full time IT guy, so that either fell on my shoulders or we would have to pay someone a lot of money to troubleshoot problems for us.

Lance Caswell
President

Solution

Very Fast Implementation

“Gregg asked if I would be okay with getting the ability to process orders and invoicing up in that time with the rest coming later and I said absolutely,” Caswell said.

Despite being a one-man IT department, president of the company and one of just eight employees, Caswell devoted much of his time to delivering everything Mercede needed. He quickly learned how to import customers, the company’s 5,000 SKUs, and vendors and set up credit card processes, shipping processes and starting balances.

“I was able to do a lot of that work myself because Acumatica’s import and export tools are easy to use and so powerful,” said Caswell. “I was on the phone sometimes with Gregg until 11 at night talking about whatever I was having trouble with, but I was up and running and ready to go when Gregg came on site.”

Caswell went live in November, 2014 in just ten days, and Mercede gives Caswell a lot of credit to making that happen. “Lance was very dedicated, smart and knew his data inside and out,” Mercede said. “He was a very good student and turned in his deliverables on time, which made our job a lot easier.”

Caswell had equal high praise for Cloud 9 ERP Solutions. “Gregg’s team knew Everest and Magento,” he said. “Without that knowledge, I don’t think we could have implemented Acumatica this fast.”

Benefits

Running Online Stores More Efficiently

Caswell Inc. is much more efficient due to many automatic processes, Caswell said. The biggest time savings has come from not having to print out separate orders, invoices and receipts from Magento, the company’s online store, input them into Everest, connect them to shipping invoices and tracking numbers and then upload them back into Magento. “If we had 50 orders a day, it took one person all day to process,” Caswell said. “Now, because everything is integrated and batched, the whole invoicing process takes only an hour as opposed to all day, which freed up a whole staff member.”

Improved Customer Communications

Because tracking numbers were only generated at the end of each day, customers didn’t know until the next day that their order was shipped and on its way. When busy employees frequently forgot to process the tracking numbers at night, someone had to spend an hour regenerating the tracking numbers and uploading them into Magento. That’s because when an additional order came in the next day, the previous day’s upload would be gone.

“Now everything is downloaded automatically and tracking numbers get uploaded every hour, which allows customers to stay informed about their order as it happens,” Caswell said.

Improved Inventory

Acumatica gave Caswell automated purchasing, which the company didn’t have before. “Now I am able to go into one screen and see all the purchase orders,” he said. “This helps us be a lot more efficient because we can see what is in stock and what we might need. Before, we were running out of stuff all day because we couldn’t see what was in stock or what we were out of.”

Eliminated IT Headaches

Caswell estimates he’s regained some 10 hours a month he previously spent troubleshooting the company’s technology problems. “Acumatica relieves me of so much IT responsibility, which is a huge worry off my mind about and time savings for me,” he said. “As a small business, we really can’t afford to hire a full time IT guy, so that either fell on my shoulders or we would have to pay someone a lot of money to troubleshoot problems for us.”

Because Acumatica offers a number of hosting options including running in the cloud, Caswell can view operations from home whenever he wants. “It’s incredibly nice to call up something from home and see it instantly,” he said. Before, he would have to log into a remote terminal and hope a connection worked and could be maintained for a period of time.

With the main business up and running, Caswell is now adding the British Tools part of the operation to Acumatica as well as the company’s Mud Skipper motor division. Acumatica allows firms to run multiple companies from the same software instance—this will help all three companies be more efficient and give them a platform for future growth. Caswell says the firm, with revenues about $4 million, is expected to grow more than 15 percent a year thanks to the fast growing Mud Skipper division, and Acumatica.

“Acumatica is incredibly simply to use, and it’s faster as well,” Caswell said. “Even though we were running Everest on premises, Acumatica is faster. The automation, the data import features and even batch change processes take minutes. Acumatica is reliable, and there’s no IT overhead.”