Founded in the 1930s, the Shepherd Color Company is a family-owned business. They focus on chemical manufacturing and creating complex inorganic color pigments. While the headquarters is in Cincinnati Ohio, they also have sales offices in multiple countries. Each year, the Shepherd Color Company supplies millions of pounds of top-quality pigments across the globe. However, to better manage business operations and improve cost efficiency, they looked to simplify disparate platforms.
Use of Multiple Platforms for Business Operations
In the past, Shepherd Color has used multiple ERP and CRM platforms. Many of these applications were installed years ago. Because of this, the applications were nearing the end of their lifespan. Several custom applications were also maintained and supported, which created a lot of additional expenses.
The primary goal of Shepherd Color was to find a single platform for ERP and CRM that could be used company-wide to limit costs while also modernizing applications. Shepherd reached out to an independent consultant to find the best solution to meet their needs.
Technology Solution – Microsoft Dynamics
Shepherd chose Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012, which is integrated on the Microsoft Dynamics CRM platform. Alithya designed and built an innovative and efficient digital solution for their unique business challenges. One of the biggest reasons for this choice was the flexibility in managing existing business processes while also keeping the same level of service for each customer.
Shepherd also believed that Microsoft Dynamics gave them the best opportunity to improve their existing services for customers at a lesser rate.
Additionally, the employees at Shepherd were already familiar with existing Microsoft products, such as SSRS, SSIS, and Office. Prior familiarity with Microsoft decreased the burden of change management throughout the organization. Microsoft Dynamics also had a lower cost of ownership compared to other competitors.
One of the main benefits of implementing Microsoft Dynamics was the standardization of applications across the organization. The modernization and reduction of unnecessary platforms also helped to decrease IT support expenses.
Microsoft Dynamics makes it possible to share information easily across multiple departments. All of this information allows Shepherd to make well-informed decisions on addressing needs within the business. Ultimately, this offers a better design for business and informational system processing.
The reduction in IT costs allows Shepherd to remain competitive across the world marketplace, which better meets customers’ needs by offering continuous improvement for applications, products, and innovation. Now, Shepherd can better serve customers with a fully integrated ERP solution.
Improving the efficiency of data sharing has also played a role in improving business intelligence and data stewardship at Shepherd. The company is also more effective at converting data into valuable information.
Microsoft Dynamics gives Shepherd the flexibility to grow its company by improving customer service and customer engagement. Shepherd can also increase user adoption and decrease the cost of ownership due to employees already being familiar with the Microsoft stack.
An integrated Microsoft Dynamics solution makes it possible for Shepherd to further support its on-time delivery target of 98% for each customer.
Lower Cost of Ownership
One of the main reasons Shepherd chose Microsoft Dynamics was due to the lower costs compared to other applications.
Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 provides tools to help better control and maximize assets, reduce operating expenses, and further monitor the impact of production, orders, inventory, and distribution.
Shepherd can now easily manage all variables related to the engineering and delivery of products by following customized formulas. Microsoft Dynamics gives Shepherd additional insight into its business operations. This allows for an increase in capacity and a continuation of finding ways to improve. Now, Shepherd can easily manage products from a simple user interface while always knowing the status of their entire inventory in real-time.
Microsoft Dynamics CRM makes it possible for the Shepherd sales team to use tools to improve productivity and focus more on building relations with customers.
Final Outcome – An Improved Business System
Using Microsoft Dynamics CRM resulted in many benefits for Shepherd. For instance, they were able to have standardization across the company. They were also able to eliminate expensive redundant platforms. Information is more accessible, improving their decision-making and business intelligence.
The reduction in costs also created more benefits for customers and reduced organizational change management by choosing familiar Microsoft products. These benefits made the transition to Microsoft Dynamics CRM well worth it for The Shepherd Color Company.