New ERP system contributes to the further growth of Omoda


‘Optimizing the customer experience through smarter and faster deliveries.’

Handling increased workloads with the same number of employees to support future growth. To achieve this goal, Omoda implemented a brand-new ERP system in early November. This system, based on the Thinkwise Platform and tailored by Vanenburg, enhances process efficiency, leading to an even more optimized customer experience.

In recent years, Omoda, in line with many other retailers, has undergone a substantial shift from offline to online sales, according to Martijn van der Maas, IT manager. “When I joined Omoda in 2017 the ratio between online and offline was around 50/50. This percentage has now shifted to 80/20. We have opened several new shops, which has increased offline sales, but we have experienced an even greater growth online.

The sales of clothing has significantly increased online sales. “We noticed that customers highly value the Omoda brand and also see us as a fashion company instead of just a shoe shop chain. That is why we have made the choice to also sell clothing.” Until recently, these clothes were mainly sold online, but this is soon going to change. “Starting in March, we are going to completely focus on clothing in our shop in Zierikzee.

Automation

During recent years, the company has invested heavily in automation to make the delivery process as efficient as possible. “For example, we have purchased packaging machines for clothing and a machine to transport the cardboard boxes. This used to be done manually”, reflects Martijn. There were two reasons to automate. “To enable further growth and finding experienced personnel is becoming increasingly difficult.

Other departments, such as customer service, have also looked into the possibilities for efficiency improvements through automation. “We have invested in tools which enable our colleagues to assist the customer as efficiently as possible. In the past, our colleagues at customer service had to look in several systems to establish the status of a particular order. They now work with one system, so that they can retrieve the data much faster.

The guiding principle is to keep the customer experience as personal as possible. “We have deliberately chosen to not use recordings or chatbots. Automation may never replace the customer experience. This has always been an important condition for us”, says Martijn. In his opinion the customer experience has even become more personal. “By automating the packaging process employees can now use this time for customers who have ordered something special or where an order has been delayed. They can give them a call or include a personal note with the order.

New ERP system

Nevertheless, the company was faced with a big challenge: the ERP system was outdated and had to be replaced. The product management system also needed modernizing. “During the past six years everything has been devoted to our new system. The implementation had consequences for almost every department. From connections with pin terminals to dealing with and settling returns”, says Martijn. A lot of thought was put into the choice of system. “Cost wise it appears attractive to purchase a standard package, but we also wanted customization to optimize the customer experience and ensure that we could continue to satisfy specific requests.” Omoda soon came in contact with Thinkwise Software. “They combine standard packages with customization. This is one of the few companies that positions itself as a provider of ERP replacement software. We liked the fact that they dared to give this guarantee. They were heavily involved in helping us determine which technology best suited our needs.

Martijn continues: “We had chosen a product and had a strategy, but still missed a concrete plan for the implementation. We approached Vanenburg for this. This company helped us with our digital transformation and advised us on how we can optimally implement our future application landscape using, for example, Google Cloud solutions. Together with these two companies we have achieved a fantastic result.

Hans Don, Chief Technology Officer at Vanenburg, on Choosing Thinkwise for Omoda: “Thinkwise Software Factory enables organizations to organize their internal development process around transaction-oriented applications in a user-friendly manner. This is why, at Vanenburg, we found this technology exceptionally suitable for the challenge Omoda faced – developing and replacing a customized legacy core system with maximum involvement from our own team. Vanenburg contributes expertise in project management, architecture, development, and implementation, as well as knowledge of Google Cloud products, facilitating the acceleration of innovation at Omoda.

Smooth go live

The go-live was at the beginning of November. “This went surprisingly smoothly”, according to Martijn. “Our aim was to resolve any bottlenecks during the following weeks, so that we could face the pressures around Black Friday. All processes could be restarted almost immediately. It even remained very calm at our customer service department.” He is very satisfied about the final result. “The Thinkwise Platform interface is very solid and accessible, while in the background we can develop, maintain and continue development of the entire system to suit our needs. This is what makes the system so powerful.

Many logistic processes have now been improved and are now working much more efficiently. “For example, the shop personnel can now retrieve orders more easily and much faster.” The logistic process has also significantly improved. “If in the past a customer in one of our shops placed an order, a specific article was reserved for them. The system now automatically examines how an order can be delivered the fastest. Perhaps an article has just been returned, which can be immediately sent to the packing department. We can now deliver faster and smarter.

Future

The new software contributes to the future growth of Omoda, the IT manager emphasizes. “We are focusing on growth. Not only online, but also in the physical shops. We want to automate the manual work as much as possible, so that we can process larger volumes with the same number of employees. Moreover, we are collecting an increasing amount of data. This gives us greater insight into what actually adds more value and what has the most impact on sales, the customer experience etc. We are continuing to develop.

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