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Successful ERP Implementation: Wholesale Furniture Brokers

Online furniture firm taps Acumatica ERP for rapid growth

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Wholesale Furniture Brokers had operated with a cobbled-together financial system centered on QuickBooks Enterprise for more than a decade. Tired of duplicate entries, time wasted as multiple users waited to use the system, and a lack of visibility into the company, owner and CEO Sergei Tashlikowich implemented Acumatica as an efficient, streamlined ERP system with the capacity and functionality to help in what he forecasts can more than double or triple his annual sales.

About Wholesale Furniture Brokers

Location: British Columbia, Canada

industry: Wholesale distribution, Retail & eCommerce

Website: http://www.GoWFB.com, http://www.GoWFB.ca

Application Replaced: QuickBooks
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Key results for Wholesale Furniture Brokers

  • Cut employees needed for system maintenance from 8 to 1 by switching from the previous complicated processes in place
  • Improved productivity as workers were shifted to higher revenue generating tasks
  • Gained a centralized, efficient platform for growth with plans to double or even triple annual sales
  • Streamlined processes and implemented more efficient ways of managing the business

Challenges

Owner and CEO Sergei Tashlikowich plans to be the largest seller of furniture online and has a strategic omni-channel strategy to grow quickly. But he knew he didn’t have the financial foundation in place to achieve that goal.

His 15-year-old Wholesale Furniture Brokers, which sells furniture to consumers and others in North America through various internet sites, ran on QuickBooks Enterprise. It wasn’t connected to his websites, his payment processor, invoicing, inventory or shipping programs. Instead, a team of eight maintained the different programs, entering information into each one to log a sale or order transaction from initial entry through to shipping. In addition, his team used Google Docs as the company’s customer relationship management system.

“I like to tell people it was like we crammed 30+ people into a 1979 Volkswagen Beetle going 100 kilometers an hour with everyone hanging on while trying to hold the car together and constantly fix it as we were traveling down a windy bumpy road,” he says. It was a manual, disjointed system that was highly inefficient. Employees, for example, couldn’t all log into QuickBooks at the same time and some processes caused the program to freeze or crash if too many employees were doing tasks at the same time.

…in addition to meeting all our needs, we gained the overall cost certainty of Acumatica and ability to grow and not have the software cost us more.
Sergei Tashlikowich, CEO and Owner at Wholesale Furniture Brokers

Sergei Tashlikowich
CEO and Owner

ERP Solution

Tashlikowich knew he couldn’t grow his business on the existing technology, so he decided to look for an integrated platform that could help streamline operations. He and his team created a list of company needs as well as a wish list. They needed a much better financial system, one that also had a robust CRM and could handle inventory management and payroll well. They wanted a flexible system, one that could provide a strong foundation for growth without increasing costs.

The team evaluated several ERPs and chose Acumatica for its unlimited user pricing and the ability to buy the software outright in the future if it made sense. “The other solutions billed based on how many users you had and what types they are,” Tashlikowich says. “I didn’t want to be constrained by the number of users, especially since I didn’t know how many we might add, and then every time we did, it would cost more.”

In addition, he says, he wasn’t interested in working with large software firms that might view his firm as just another number in the corporate world with the intent of getting as much revenue dollars out of his business.

“I really liked that Acumatica has unlimited user pricing and that while on SaaS, in the future we have the option to buy the software outright,” Tashlikowich says. “So, in addition to meeting all our needs, we gained the overall cost certainty of Acumatica and ability to grow and not have the software cost us more.”

Wholesale Furniture Brokers decided to use Acumatica partner Catapult, based in Vancouver, British Columbia for its service and support contract. Catapult has built PowerBI dashboards to get deeper insights into their data, upgraded Wholesale Furniture Brokers to version 6.1 and made incremental improvements that make the company more efficient, says Blair Hurlbut, Vice President of Solution Delivery of Catapult.

Benefits for Wholesale Furniture Brokers

Acumatica Brings Process Efficiencies Shifting Staff to Higher-Value Tasks

Acumatica has made Wholesale Furniture Brokers much more efficient and integrated with improved processes that have allowed the company to shift employees to higher value tasks, and allowed them to increase revenues.

The company used to have three to four people in shipping, another three to four in administration processing orders, and two people in accounting. “When we would get an eCommerce order, someone would have to determine what items were in stock, then type information into accounting, then into another system to place the purchase order. Then we would have to make a note in the eCommerce software and tell the customer that it was ordered,” Tashlikowich says. “Then, someone would have to figure out how to get an item if it wasn’t in stock, and figure out the best LTL carrier to use and manually create a shipment to ship the product to the customer. A single order could take 25 to 30 minutes to process.”

With Acumatica, a single person handles the tasks previously assigned to eight, and that person can place an order within two minutes on average. “We’ve really cut down on a lot of the redundancy,” says Tashlikowich. The improved processes allowed several people to move into revenue-generating and other roles, while a couple left for new positions.

Tashlikowich likes that Acumatica provides insight into inventory levels now and in the future.  He also is happy to have been able to build third party software that can update those numbers to his various online sites automatically. His team is spending more time on marketing promotions and on product development rather than managing different software packages.

“We’re also setting ourselves up for the ability to have better reporting and visibility into what’s going on in our business,” Tashlikowich says. “Whether it’s analyzing profitability or turns of our inventory, we have the information to make better decisions.” For example, he says, they have much better insight into what they have in stock, what’s on order, how much has been sold, and they have been able to shift inventory to different warehouses much more efficiently.

Acumatica Positions Wholesale Furniture Brokers to Double or Triple Revenues

With the ability to get a much more accurate snapshot of the business and data, Acumatica is helping Wholesale Furniture Brokers grow revenue through on- and off-line channels. The company is increasing the number of products it carries through partnerships with new factories and through new accounts with companies interested in drop-shipping furniture. It is aggressively moving into the B2B space and re-entering the U.S. market in a much bigger and aggressive way.

“We are positioning ourselves so that whether you buy in-stock, in-house branded products or furniture from our manufacturers’ drop-ship products we can do that business efficiently and profitably while providing a better customer experience and better value,” Tashlikowich says. “We also gained the ability to market and run promotions that are seamless across multiple sites, which means we can plan better and implement promotions that drive sales. That’s a huge benefit.”

Tashlikowich’s plan is to make Wholesale Furniture Brokers fully integrated with its suppliers, business partners, online sales marketplaces like Amazon and Wayfair, and through its physical stores and websites.  “We’re really trying to take over the furniture world,” he says. “No matter where you find our products, we’re building the brands with an omni-channel approach to connect with our customers no matter where they are or how they want to buy their new furniture from us.”

Acumatica, he adds, gives the company the capacity to double and even triple the business without having to add staff to facilitate that growth. “It won’t happen overnight but month over month we’re adding more drop-ship vendors, researching new products and marketing more—all the things that drive more traffic to our sites and drive more sales,” says Tashlikowich. “Acumatica provides the backbone and foundation for that growth.”


Application replaced: QuickBooks

Most companies got their start using Inuit’s QuickBooks for their financials. But there comes a time when QuickBooks is just not enough. If you’re ready to take the next step, see what Acumatica has to offer.

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