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Codeless Case Study

CB Imports Ltd.

Automatic Report Generation and the Automation of Stock and Credit Control Processes

CB Imports Ltd., a leading importer, distributor and wholesaler of artificial flowers, ceramics, glassware, giftware and home décor, operates from multiple sites throughout the UK and deals with international manufacturers. It therefore required a business process automation solution that could streamline its operation. Specifically, it required a solution that could monitor and report real-time business information, including credit control and stock control processes, without the need for human intervention.

Primary Applications Used: Pegasus, Crystal Reports

“In any sector, you employ people to develop the business. However, most employees are often forced to take on ‘administrative’ duties, regardless of company position.”

Jonathan Hinchliffe, IT Manager, CB Imports Ltd.

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Automatic report generation and automating stock control and credit control processes

Company Details

CB Imports Plc is a leading importer, distributor and wholesaler of Artificial Flowers, Ceramics, Glassware, Giftware and Home Décor. It has offices in Leeds, Manchester, Birmingham and Glasgow.

The Challenge

  • Improve efficiencies relating to credit and stock control
  • Reduce time spent by employees on creating and distributing reports
  • Eliminate unnecessary manual administration
  • Ensure that buyers receive real-time stock information

The Solution

  • Automatic report generation and delivery
  • Ensure that buyers receive real-time stock information
  • Improve credit control

The Results

  • Report automation
  • Automated credit control processes
  • Human errors eliminated
  • Improvements to inter-branch communications
  • Employee productivity increased

“Codeless Platforms’ solution ensures that that all our buyers benefit from real-time information, stock levels, via SMS and email.”

Jonathan Hinchliffe, IT Manager, CB Imports Ltd.

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Automatic monitoring and reporting

CB Imports Ltd. operates within the extremely competitive product-distribution business and therefore inefficiencies in stock control, movement of products and pricing always has a seriously detrimental effect on company profitability. As a symptom of this environment, companies such as CB Imports Ltd invest considerable resources in monitoring and reporting of critical business information.

Unfortunately, this activity also absorbs valuable management and employee time. In light of the above, CB Imports Ltd’s aim was to place itself in a position where critical monitoring and reporting of business information could be achieved without the need for valuable human resources from the IT department being tied up.

Report process automation

The management of stock for companies based within importation, distribution and wholesale is extremely resource intensive, with multiple departments and employees often spending many hours ensuring a smooth operation.

With the company experiencing solid year-on-year growth, the demands being placed on the IT department report writer was proving to be strain on this valuable resource. Indeed, just one missed report and subsequent poor decisions could have resulted in the company carrying unnecessary stock or not having sufficient supplies to satisfy demand. This was a risk CB Imports Ltd was unwilling to take.

  • Improve stock control efficiency
  • Reduce time spent by employees
  • Eliminate unnecessary manual data entry

“All our commercial buyers are completely dependent on having the right information to maximise profits or to ensure that unnecessary overheads are not accumulated.”

Jonathan Hinchliffe, IT Manager, CB Imports Ltd.

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Use Codeless Platforms’ BPA Platform to automate the report production process

Through the implementation of Codeless Platforms’ BPA Platform, CB Imports Ltd. has dramatically reduced the time spent by the IT department report writer compiling basic operational reports to focus on more mission critical reporting and analysis functions.

“All our commercial buyers are completely dependent on having the right information to maximise profits or to ensure that unnecessary overheads are not accumulated,” explained Jonathan Hinchliffe, IT Manager, CB Imports Ltd.

“Codeless Platforms’ solution ensures that this is always the case and that all our buyers benefit from real-time information, stock levels, via SMS and email. The efficiency of our procurement function has increased noticeably.”

The movement from human-dependent report generation and distribution to intelligent business process automation has also meant that the company’s report writer, Mary Hullah, is now free to concentrate on identifying new business development opportunities.

“In any sector, you employ people to develop the business. However, most employees are often forced to take on ‘administrative’ duties, regardless of company position,” said Hinchliffe. “With this solution, our staff are free to get on with more important activities that they were initially employed to do.”

  • Report automation
  • Ensure that buyers receive real-time stock level information
  • Use SMS and email
  • Automate Direct Debit checks

The significant impact on the sales ledger

An efficient credit control system can make a significant contribution towards the competitiveness of a company yet, ironically, the company credit control system is also the most susceptible to human limitations. Indeed, with most companies still using employees to operate their accounting package, the credit control process is still often slow and prone to human error.

CB Imports Ltd, decided to use the automation qualities of Codeless Platforms’ BPA Platform to monitor its sales ledger to identify when a client was approaching or was going over its credit limit.

“We set up a simple automated task to monitor our sales ledger as we’re always looking for innovative ways to increase efficiency and reduce the administrative burden on our employees,” said Hinchcliffe. “Now, key members of staff receive emails when credit limits are approached or breached. The impact on our sales ledger has been extremely impressive.”

“We set up a simple automated task to monitor our sales ledger as we’re always looking for innovative ways to increase efficiency.”

Jonathan Hinchliffe, IT Manager, CB Imports Ltd.

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True connectivity for the branches of CB Imports Ltd. delivered

In addition to the above, CB Imports Ltd. also benefits from greater inter-branch communication. Each day individual branches are emailed with current stock re-order forms making the flow of stock between branches far more efficient than was previously the case.

  • Employees automatically emailed
  • Human errors removed
  • Inter-branch communication improved
Case Study: CB Imports Ltd

Case Study: CB Imports Ltd

Discover how CB Imports Ltd., a leading importer, distributor and wholesaler, used Codeless Platforms' BPA Platform to improve its stock and credit control processes to improve efficiency and productivity.

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