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CASE STUDY

The Little Potato Company achieves over 8% improvement in their fill rate

Founded in 1996, The Little Potato Company (TLPC) has been the leading farmer of Creamer potatoes. They have three production facilities and eight distribution centers that service the US and Canadian markets through large grocers and superstores.

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Company

The Little Potato Company

Location

USA

Industry

Potato producer and manufacturer

ERP

Microsoft Dynamics Business Central

Challenge

Manual processes not able to accommodate growth.

Solution

Netstock integrated into Microsoft Dynamics Business Central.

Result

Over 8% improvement in fill rate.

Business growth brings business challenges

TLPC was growing exponentially, and with this growth came the realization that it was no longer sustainable to plan their demand and supply using spreadsheets. Everything they were doing was Excel-based and fraught with challenges. Managing the sheer volume of data when forecasting by customer and item was becoming time intense and complex.

Customer A would provide a forecast, but it was serviced from 3 different locations; how do you split that up, and by what percentage? Customer B went on promo; how much and where do you allocate that?

Being able to adjust safety stock based on statistical modeling using history and forecast deviation instead of just a number of days coverage has improved our inventory fill rate from 90.9 to 98%.

Philip Yu, Senior Sales and Operations Manager

“We had no real customer history data. We couldn’t see, for example, which customers were on an upward trend and by what percentage against the previous year. We had none of that finer-level data. It was all one aggregate number from the servicing distribution center,” says Matt Hamilton, Operations Planning Manager.

Dealing with inventory anomalies

“Over the COVID-19 pandemic, there was a high level of demand variability. Had we still been using Excel, it would have been impossible to strip away the abnormal demand. With Netstock, we can smooth out these anomalies from our future forecasts, which really helped us to avoid any excess stock situations,” mentions Philip Yu, Senior Sales and Operations Manager.

Integration and functionality

When Netstock was first implemented at TLPC, they used Microsoft Dynamics NAV as their ERP. They later upgraded that to Microsoft Dynamics Business Central. “We had to have a solution that would integrate to our ERP, and with both NAV and Business Central the Netstock integration was seamless and effortless.”

Having looked at other solutions, it was clear from the outset that Netstock was superior. “There is a lot of functionality in Netstock, but for me, I particularly like the fact that we have the ability to create links between our forwarding distribution centers and our production facilities, and I’m able to explode that down to the bill of materials for our procurement teams. Netstock has enabled us to streamline our processes and become much more efficient,” Matt continues.

Return on investment

With Netstock, TLPC can plan using different metrics and safety stock parameters. Being able to adjust safety stock based on statistical modeling using history and forecast deviation instead of just a number of days coverage has improved our inventory fill rate from 90.9 to 98%,” adds Philip

What’s next

TLPC plans to adopt the finite capacity planning functionality found in Netstock. “This will give us a full 360-degree supply chain planning solution and allow us to manage our production plants better. Efficiency is key, especially in the food industry.”

Supply chain planning software's ROI

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