Simon Pearce sells high-end pottery and glassware through five main retail channels; the company also operates a fine-dining restaurant in Quechee, Vermont. From the beginning, Simon Pearce’s vision has been to create beautifully designed products, produced using premium materials and time-honored techniques for a lifetime of everyday use. When its vendor discontinued support for their point-of-sale (POS) system, Simon Pearce took the opportunity to evaluate best-of-breed solutions that would sustain its critical business priorities.
|We wanted to have something we could really build upon. We think that is what Microsoft Dynamics for Retail will allow us to do. The solution allows us to move with a fast-paced marketplace.|
| Bill Heston|
Director of Information
For more than 40 years, Simon Pearce has built its success on designing and producing handmade glass and pottery that provides enriched experiences at home and around the table. Today, a vibrant design team explores fresh directions that go beyond expectations and, while remaining true to the brand heritage, pushes boundaries to express new forms and sublime textures in glass and pottery.
Simon Pearce has cultivated a reputation for premium, beautifully designed glassware and pottery pieces. The company operates out of headquarters in Windsor, Vermont and has three manufacturing facilities that produce more than 434,000 pieces of pottery and glassware each year. It operates several different sales channels, including seven of its own retail stores, a catalog, and an online store, plus a wholesale business, working with over 500 partners to resell their merchandise through a network of retailers. The company also runs an award-winning restaurant with one of its retail stores attached on the scenic Ottauquechee River in Vermont. In addition, customers can place orders for personalized merchandise.
When Simon Pearce's vendor discontinued support for their point-of-sale (POS) system, Simon Pearce took the opportunity to evaluate best-of-breed solutions that would sustain its critical business priorities.
"Microsoft Dynamics seems flexible and easy to use, and it’s fairly intuitive," says Terri Pare, Executive Director of Finance and Administration, Simon Pearce. "In our [legacy] UNIX system, you constantly were in and out of menus to get someplace. Having the ability to move from screen to screen from almost anywhere within Microsoft Dynamics saves us a lot of time. This system will also allow us to grow, and we won't have to go through this process in another two years."
Fast, Smooth Implementation
Simon Pearce implemented Microsoft Dynamics for Retail and Microsoft Dynamics for Retail POS, along with some additional functionality. The solution went live in October 2011, with the complete implementation taking just 6.5 months. Simon Pearce has now replaced many disparate and disconnected systems with a single solution built on Microsoft Dynamics for Retail.
Customizing to Fulfill Orders Through Any Channel
|The world is changing so fast, you don't know what direction you'll need to move in. The solution allows us to move with a fast-paced marketplace.|
| Bill Heston|
Director of Information
Simon Pearce customized Microsoft Dynamics for Retail POS to enable order-taking in any channel. Likewise, orders can be filled in any channel. For example, Special Orders can be entered at the point of sale and can include personalization options such as gift boxing, engraving, and enclosure card setups. After orders are entered, they appear in Microsoft Dynamics for immediate fulfillment activities. The POS system has "will-call" functionality to notify the customer that an order is ready for pickup and also allows for the pickup and adjustment of order information directly at the point of sale.
Simon Pearce also developed a cross-channel gift registry. Registry information is available in real time at the point of sale, the call center, and on the Web, and purchases or other changes to the registry status are available to all channels immediately. The team continues to refine the Microsoft Dynamics for Retail software package and improve the functionality for Simon Pearce.
Automating, Improving Processes
As a result of this implementation, Simon Pearce has met its goals of achieving greater visibility and access to information, automating manual processes, and ensuring that the entire organization is operating from the same set of data. The system also is more reliable, and employees no longer have to manually re-enter information from one system to another.
Speeding Reporting and Ensuring Accuracy
Reporting is easier and more transparent, too. For instance, with Microsoft Dynamics for Retail, authorized employees can run departmental reports and automatically create journal entries, which Accounts Payable employees can then review and post. This process, which used to take more than four hours each month, is now completed in just 20 minutes.
Dramatically Streamlining Fulfillment Processes
The shipping solution is integrated with the scale. The warehouse team no longer needs to manually enter weights, and the accuracy of the system has greatly improved. The team can also scan the picklist number to verify the shipping address.
"This has really increased the efficiency of fulfillment," says Heston. "We can process packages in about one-half of the time."
Reducing Manual Data Entry
| Simon Pearce best sellers|
With the legacy system, each order placed on the Web had to be edited by a human being. Now, 95 percent of all Web orders go into Microsoft Dynamics for Retail without human intervention, saving a significant amount of time and ensuring the accuracy of the order. In addition, the company switched from a paper gift certificate model to a gift card format. Customers can redeem the gift cards through any of the Simon Pearce channels seamlessly, and employees no longer need to manually enter information and track the cards through the various channels, which was necessary with the paper certificates.
"We wanted to have something we could really build upon. We think that is what Microsoft Dynamics AX will allow us to do," says Heston. "It puts us in a strong position to build forward over time. The world is changing so fast, you don't know what direction you'll need to move in. The solution allows us to move with a fast-paced marketplace."
This case study is for informational purposes only. MICROSOFT MAKES NO WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, IN THIS SUMMARY. Document published February 2013