|They had hundreds of databases to push the data into and yet Fountain Tire did not have any supply chain integration. This meant that the company had very limited visibility with other store inventories, which could really impact efficiency.”|
| Daniel Enekes|
President and CEO at XAPT, a Microsoft Dynamics Global ISV Partner
Founded 1956 in Wainwright, Alberta, by Bill Fountain , today Fountain Tire has more than 158 stores spanning as far west as Victoria, British Columbia and as far east to Toronto, Ontario. Fountain Tire offers a wide range of car, truck, farm, haulage and specialty tires, as well as complete automotive services, for any make and model of vehicle.
In 2005 Fountain Tire decided that the way it was running its enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems was inefficient. At the time, the company operated a networked or decentralized system that was comprised of more than 135 remote databases – which meant no real-time data collection or insight into inventory across the organization, as well the system had no ability to track product SKU numbers.
What this also meant was a lack of continuity in customer care: If a longtime Fountain Tire customer went to another location, he or she would need an entirely new file, and the store would have no understanding of the history of service provided or the client’s needs.
“We had limited line of sight with our customers because they were managed in completely separate databases,” says Pat Witiw, Vice President of Information Systems, Fountain Tire. “If you went to a Fountain Tire in Edmonton and had new tires installed on your car, and then you traveled to Vancouver where you had a problem, there would be no insight into the work that was done back in Edmonton.”
It was quickly becoming clear that this was a major problem – especially for Fountain Tire’s commercial customers, whose businesses are fueled on traveling across the country.
“They had hundreds of databases to push the data into and yet Fountain Tire did not have any supply chain integration,” says Daniel Enekes, President and CEO at XAPT, a Microsoft Dynamics Global ISV Partner.
“This meant that the company had very limited visibility with other store inventories, which could really impact efficiency.”
“Our customers look for a high standard of service and we were finding this goal very difficult to continue to offer when we were operating 135 decentralized systems,” says Witiw. “We needed one system that could keep track of our corporate sales and inventory which would bring real value and continuity to our customers.”
So Fountain Tire put out a competitive request for proposal which, at first, assessed seven ERP solutions. In the end, the company believed it had two choices: Microsoft Dynamics AX or SAP. Solution
After a rigorous review process, Fountain Tire resolved that a Microsoft Dynamics AX solution would help Fountain Tire not only significantly increase its level of customer service – but also improve the way the Fountain Tire team did business overall.
To integrate the solution, Fountain Tire chose XAPT, a global Microsoft ISV partner specializing in industry solutions built on Microsoft Dynamics AX for the automotive after care market.
“We had a fairly big selection process composed of associates from the head office, as well as the stores, and we weighted between the store needs, the head office function needs and the IT team’s needs,” says Witiw. “What the stores said was that they have a lot of churn and a lot of turnaround in a retail setting, and unequivocally, the Microsoft system would be much easier to learn.”
|We’ve seen tremendous same store growth and expansion growth and there’s no way the previous system would have been able to handle the incremental transaction growth. Today we can process transactions quicker, service customers more efficiently, and I don’t even think we’ve hit our final stride in terms of efficiencies yet.|
| Pat Witiw|
Vice President of Information Systems
Microsoft Dynamics AX is a solution for enterprises that provides a purpose-built foundation for resource planning. Its comprehensive capabilities include financial management, business intelligence and reporting, sales and marketing, procurement and sourcing, supply chain management, project management and accounting, human capital management, global risk and compliance, environmental sustainability and more.
Packaged in a single global solution that delivers rapid time to value, Microsoft Dynamics AX empowers teams to anticipate and embrace change so their businesses can thrive.
Fountain Tire leveraged the solution to create a centralized database which housed customer profiles, inventory and sales data. This enabled the company to completely automate its business processes, such as tire order, purchase and delivery, and also launch full supply chain integration across its stores and five warehouses.
Because the solution was so simple to integrate, Fountain Tire quickly grew its system integration beyond its initial 135 stores and scaled it out to more than 158.
Fountain Tire also integrated the Microsoft Dynamics ERP system into its Program (Head Office), 5 warehouse distribution centres tire and 6 retread plants. Benefits
Microsoft Dynamics AX is built to empower teams, simplify processes and above all enable a connected ERP ecosystem. With this solution, Fountain Tire has been able to increase the company’s operational efficiency, vastly improve its continuity of customer care, and make plans to scale as the company continues to grow.
With Microsoft Dynamics AX, Fountain Tire staff members now spend less time managing inventory – significantly reducing the administrative burden and empowering them to spend more time on providing superior customer service.
“We’ve seen tremendous same store growth and expansion growth and there’s no way the previous system would have been able to handle the incremental transaction growth,” says Witiw. “Today we can process transactions quicker, service customers more efficiently, and I don’t even think we’ve hit our final stride in terms of efficiencies yet.”
The powerful solution offers Fountain Tire the ability to pivot on different needs as they arise – offering critical data that enables much more timely decision making, and overall business agility.
With its familiar Microsoft user interface and intuitive processes, Fountain Tire has also been able to tighten its IT team – today managing the ERP for 158 stores with an IT staff of just 25 people.
Improved customer service
An incredibly important pillar to maintaining the strength of Fountain Tire’s brand, the company has been able to vastly improve its customer service for both individual and commercial customers alike.
“The tire business is highly competitive, and the reality is if the customer asks for something and you are not able to tell them when you can deliver it, they’ll just go to another store,” says Enekes.
Witiw says that now that Fountain Tire has the right technology, the company is confident it’s offering the very best customer service it can.
“We now offer quicker, more comprehensive and more accurate service,” says Witiw.
Microsoft Dynamics AX combines a rich set of core capabilities with an innovative approach to ERP that enables organizations to quickly grow as their needs change.
“The great thing about this ERP system is that it is going to allow us to grow our company internally and externally,” says Witiw. “Now that we have a sophisticated and agile platform with contemporary functionality, we can add to it as we need to.” For More Information
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For more information about Fountain Tire, go to: www.FountainTire.com This case study is for informational purposes only. MICROSOFT MAKES NO WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, IN THIS SUMMARY.