Back to All Success Stories

Successful ERP Implementation: Kelly Products, Inc.

Agribusiness with Multiple Brands Digitally Transforms Operations with Acumatica ERP

Kelly Products, Inc. is the holding company for 13 diverse agribusiness brands, ranging from Kelly Registration Systems to Contract Packaging Inc. to Great Estates to Swhacker. Kelly companies were operating on a legacy ERP, and when it was time to implement a new system, Kelly Products chose Acumatica — a modern, cloud-based ERP system with a robust inter-company module, that connected Kelly Products’ entire operation.

About Kelly Products, Inc.

Location: Covington, Georgia

industry: Agriculture and farming, Manufacturing

Website: http://www.kelly-products.com/

Key results for Kelly Products, Inc.

  • Automated financial reporting, inventory transfers, vendor, payments, cash management, and inter-company transfers across multiple related companies
  • Reduced time from two months to one week for month-end close
  • Provided real-time access to critical financial data
  • Connected internally developed inventory system to accounting system, eliminating manual entries performed by multiple data entry staff
  • Gained real-time access to inventory data
  • Flexible platform with access to scores of third-party products

Challenges

Kelly Products, Inc. began in 1993 with two goals: produce a more efficient formulation and distribution system for plant protection products; and create software to streamline the product registration process. The company’s innovative spirit led to the building of 13 businesses and brands, including:

  • Kelly Packaging, manufacturer of Sevin® Dust
  • Contract Packaging, manufacturing services for formulation, packaging and distribution, etc.
  • Kelly Registration Systems, offering licensing and registration software
  • Great Estates Landscaping, residential and commercial landscaping business
  • Christmas Décor by Great Estates, season-specific landscaping décor and lighting services
  • Farmview Market, a specialty grocery
  • Kelly Farm Operations, farming grass-fed cattle, hogs, heirloom corn and commercial crops
  • Kelly Outdoor Products Group
    • EST, LLC/C’Mere Deer, a manufacturer of deer attractants
    • Arrow Dynamics/Swhacker, a provider of broadhead arrowheads
    • TAC Vanes, a manufacturer of archery vanes
  • AJC Precision, a provider of custom fabrication

Two years after starting its initial business in 1993, Kelly Products implemented an ERP, says Corey Wynn, Information Technology Manager. As new divisions were started, new instances of the ERP were purchased. They weren’t connected, and were being managed by different people among the various businesses.

“The biggest challenge was that there was no cross over between the companies,” he says. “Different people set up things differently for each business, which made it difficult when someone was out. Someone else has to go into that business system, who was often unfamiliar with that business system’s coding and transaction process.”

Tracking inter-company transfers was also a challenge. Many transfers between businesses were paper-based and physically mailed from one company to another. Then they had to be entered into the proper company’s system. This held up monthly reporting and increased chances for manual-entry errors.

With its ERP solution nearing the end of its life, Kelly Products began looking for a new software solution.

One of the key benefits is being able to link companies. We can make an update once and it translates the update for all our companies rather than having one person manually enter the update into many systems.
Corey Wynn, Information Technology Manager at Kelly Products, Inc.

Corey Wynn
Information Technology Manager

ERP Solution

The Kelly team considered numerous platforms, including building its own ERP before deciding to take a cloud-based approach. Acumatica was recommended by their consultant, who introduced Kelly Products to Acumatica partner Emerald TC, based in Cumming, Georgia.

Affordable ERP Handles Multiple Businesses

Kelly Products chose Acumatica because it was affordable and easily handled intercompany transfers, allowing Kelly Products to automate financial reporting, inventory transfers, vendor payments, as well as cash management across its multiple related companies.

“It was partly an economic decision.” Wynn says. “Acumatica’s all-inclusive user licensing model made the cloud-based ERP provider very affordable.”

From an IT-perspective, Wynn was impressed with Acumatica’s Cloud xRP platform and its open API, which enables developers to easily and quickly create customizations, connect external systems and build add-on solutions. Kelly Products has a software development business that built its own inventory control system and manufacturing resource planning package, both of which have been integrated with Acumatica.

Benefits for Kelly Products, Inc.

Connected Business Transforms Kelly Products

Acumatica automated and eliminated many of Kelly Products’ manual accounting tasks and digitally transformed the way it does business. All 13 businesses now have standard financial operating procedures in place, and intercompany transfers are automatic. The company’s accounting team is now able to be more strategic and efficient. While Kelly Products hasn’t documented just how much time the accounting staff has saved, Wynn says he’s certain that they are saving a lot of time and money, thanks to Acumatica.

“One of the key benefits is being able to link companies,” Wynn says. “We can make an update once and it translates the update for all our companies rather than having one person manually enter the update into many systems.”

Allocating services from areas of the business such as IT Services or manufacturing among the 13 entities is no longer individually invoiced. It’s now as simple as making a cost percentage entry into Acumatica, and the finances on the back end are distributed accordingly.

The company also saves time tracking inventory in one system rather than two. Our legacy system, he explains, was not connected to our inventory management system, which meant they had to track inventory and manually move information between two systems.

“Acumatica allows us to integrate our own software into the system so we can now push inventory information through Acumatica. We can invoice in real time, see invoice payment data, and see inventory levels with accuracy,” says Wynn.

Acumatica’s open API Stimulates Innovation

The connection between Acumatica and the inventory system is seamless thanks to Acumatica’s open API, which offers the flexibility and inter-operability required to make customizations and provide for integrations when necessary. The open API framework was another key benefit of the cloud-based ERP, says Wynn.

Kelly Products connected its manufacturing resource planning software, MRP2, to Acumatica and other developments are in the works. The software team recently created a connection through the Acumatica API for its credit card payments, which allows a customer to view an invoice online, pulling the information from Acumatica, pay the bill, and then the information is processed and pushed back into Acumatica.

Easy-to-use Software

Wynn says company employees find Acumatica easy to use and its navigation intuitive. “Acumatica is not a complicated system to maneuver around in and the modules have the same look and feel, which makes it easier to train employees while the built-in search functionality makes finding what you are looking for a breeze,” he says.

“The help feature is tremendous,” Wynn adds. “You just click on something and get the information right from the same screen. That alone speaks volumes as to the ease of use of the application.”

Kelly Products Poised for Growth

“We now have access to real-time financial information and access to that data is transforming the way we do business.”


Acumatica Customer Speaks Out

Learn what they really think about cloud ERP in this Gartner Peer Insights report.