SYSPRO gives back to the manufacturing sector

SYSPRO a provider of industry-built ERP software is stepping up to support the Asia Pacific manufacturing and distribution sector through the global pandemic and is showing its appreciation through a number of skills development initiatives.

Supporting customers through the pandemic
To support customers, for a limited time, SYSPRO is offering the opportunity to have free access to courses on the SYSPRO Learning Channel Plus platform. The SYSPRO Learning Channel Plus offers a list of courses for all SYSPRO users regardless of their role within an organisation. As further support for its customers, SYSPRO staff and partners will promote customer products through SYSPRO owned channels in APAC.

Bolstering the industry in preparation for the upturn
In order to bolster industry resilience, SYSPRO has kicked off an initiative to provide 500 recently unemployed individuals in the manufacturing and distribution sector with unlimited access to the online SYSPRO Learning Channel at no cost until the end of October.

This initiative aims to increase a candidate’s chance of being successful in today’s exceptionally competitive market adversely impacted by COVID-19.  S&P Global estimates that unemployment rates across Asia-Pacific could rise by well over three per cent, twice as large as the average recession. By applying, candidates will learn new skills and improve their knowledge of ERP and increase their chances of becoming more marketable.

“The impact of the pandemic has been felt by all sectors and industries globally. SYSPRO would like to take this opportunity to thank manufacturers and distributors around the region for continuing to work and support the economy. We hope that by offering skills development opportunities to the industry at large that we will bolster industry resilience in preparation for the upturn,” Rob Stummer, chief executive officer at SYSPRO APAC said.

How to apply for the initiative
As a global initiative, the SYSPRO ‘gives-back’ initiative for unemployed individuals is aimed at all of SYSPRO’s operating regions including the US, Canada, Africa, UK, Asia and Australasia. To qualify for this opportunity:

  1. The candidate must be currently unemployed and have recently lost their employment due to the global COVID-19 pandemic.
  2. The candidate must have work experience in the Manufacturing sector.
  3. Preference will be given to candidates who have experience working in one of SYSPRO’s Target Market industries ( please refer to below link for further details)
  4. Preference will be given to candidates who have ERP experience.

Fruit exporter thrives with Greentree ERP

Greentree’s accuracy and ease of use bring major benefits for kiwifruit grower and post-harvest company Jace Group.

Challenge
Jace Group requires seamless accounting and reporting of the production from dozens of kiwifruit orchards, and from its packing facilities.

Solution
Greentree integrates financials, job costing and transactional analysis, while AutoScan simplifies data uploading from multiple locations.

Results
A variety of widely different reports are easily compiled, large seasonal payrolls are managed accurately, and databases are simple to update.

Lee Weatherley is the Accountant for the Jace Group, a significant kiwifruit grower and one of the largest privately owned kiwifruit post-harvest companies in New Zealand. The company packs more than eight million trays of kiwifruit per year, primarily for export.

Jace Group owns 77.5 canopy hectares* of orchards, mainly in the Bay of Plenty and South Auckland, and leases another 125 hectares. For the complex task of tracking orchard production and costs, it chose Greentree.

CONSISTENCY IS KEY

Jace Group is a key player in the kiwifruit industry, which is one of New Zealand’s multi-million-dollar export successes.

“We pride ourselves on quality performance and attention to detail,” says Lee. “We consistently achieve above industry returns for our growers. Given there is only a limited window of opportunity to harvest the crop from the vines, it is vital that all operations from logistics through to our accounting & reporting functions to growers run seamlessly.”

Jace Group has used Greentree since its inception in 2006, but Lee’s connection to Greentree goes back much further than that. She previously worked for Seeka, another long-time Greentree user, and was instrumental in bringing Greentree to Jace Group. Having used Greentree herself, Lee was confident in its ability to manage the entire supply chain.

“Because we have to cover from the growing of the crop right through to harvesting, storing and packing, we need a business system that is able to capture all that data and report on it in a wide range of ways,” she explains.

DETAILED COST ANALYSIS

Greentree has to break down the growing costs and returns for each individual orchard, and for each variety of fruit (yes, while they might look similar there are a number of different kiwifruit varieties). Jace Group makes extensive use of Job Costing and Greentree’s transactional analysis capabilities to differentiate between each growing season and variety.

“It’s so easy to extract data – you just push a button and it’s done,” enthuses Lee. “Our data is all live and automated, it’s accurate, and our checks and balances all take place in Greentree.

“Live visibility is important because our managers out in the field need to know where they’re tracking against their budgets,” Lee adds. “We need an ERP system that integrates across our entire business.”

Jace Group’s packing and cool stores in the Bay of Plenty and Auckland are hives of intensive activity during the picking and packing season, which runs from mid-March through to September. As many as 900 people, many of them transient workers, may be employed during the season.

During the 8-10 week main packing season, Jace Group’s facilities will operate 6-7 days a week, up to 21 hours a day. Finger-scanning software is used to record attendance in the packing sheds and the data is automatically uploaded into Greentree Payroll.

FLEXIBILITY CRUCIAL IN CRISIS

Greentree’s flexibility proved crucial when the Psa bacterial virus swept through the kiwifruit orchards. Exporter Zespri partly overcame the crisis by introducing new varieties of more tolerant plants.

“Our Greentree system was flexible enough that we could easily modify our database to include those new varieties,” says Lee.

The Greentree Partner also introduced Jace Group to AutoScan, which has brought huge benefits.

“Because we have office sites at three different locations and accounting staff at all those sites, we can source data from wherever we happen to be and information on who has entered the data,” Lee says. “Greentree has enabled us to develop sophisticated uploads for lots of data, eliminating human error data entry issues. We have nine or so operating companies within our group, and it’s a tremendous help for me to be able to monitor performance for consistency.

“The industry is growing so much,” Lee concludes. “We’re heading towards higher volumes of fruit and are looking to expand our facilities. We’re confident that Greentree will continue to grow with us and we’re always looking at ways to work smarter with it, to meet any challenges ahead.”

*The amount of ground that is covered by fruit-bearing vines.

 

Austral Fisheries reaping the benefits of ERP software

Austral Fisheries needed remote access to a real time environment to enable its sales team to better serve an expanding customer base.

“The fishing part of our business is a 24/7 operation and is highly regulated. Coupled with our seafood trading operation, which has to be managed dynamically, we need business tools that can handle this sort of pressure,” said Greg Johnston, CFO and Company Secretary of Austral.

Austral Fisheries is one of Australia’s leading commercial fishing companies. The company’s Greentree system has been in use for more than a decade, supported by Greentree Partner, Addax Business Solutions, and has proved its flexibility by scaling up to meet the company’s growth and changing business requirements.

Recent developments included moving Greentree to the cloud and equipping Austral’s sales staff with Greentree-4Sales, for greater efficiency on the move.

Hosting Greentree in the cloud means data is available instantly to management and staff wherever they are as long as they have an internet connection. Thanks to Greentree4Sales, they also have customer details at their fingertips.

Sales staff can conclude deals, update the system and provide documentation on the spot, and management has a live view of business performance.

“It’s a good, stable all-round system that has met our special needs with some innovative approaches,” said Johnston “When we said we needed to make some changes, Greentree was able to step up and respond. The Addax team has a comprehensive understanding of Greentree, providing solid support and confidence that problems can be resolved quickly.”

Austral consists of three distinct businesses, each with its own challenges:

  • Its Southern Ocean operation runs four deep-sea fishing vessels, catching mostly Toothfish. Its focus is to value-add the catch and create a market for premium fillets for the domestic and export markets.
  • Its prawn operation runs 10 trawlers – another value-added domestic and export market. Austral has also developed direct relationships with the main Australian supermarkets for this catch.
  • Seafood Solutions is Austral’s seafood trading arm, mostly selling imported products from sustainable overseas fisheries to the Australian wholesale market. It accounts for over a third of Austral’s turnover and it’s the growth of this operation which put new demands on Austral’s Greentree system.

“This is a very competitive business that requires tight control of working capital and good customer service,” explained Johnston.

“With seafood trading, you have to be able to conclude business on the spot. You don’t want to tell the customer you’ll get back to them, or promise them product only to find there’s no stock available.”

Keeping up with currency, regulatory requirements In Greentree4Sales, Austral has found a tool that is invaluable for its sales team, who can now access Greentree on the move via mobile devices.

“Our sales reps need live information at their fingertips,” said Johnston.

“They need to be able to conclude business when visiting customers. Greentree4Sales means they can process orders and provide copies to the customer before leaving their premises. They don’t have that backlog of paperwork and they can even do special deals right there and then.”

With the strict regulatory requirements around commercial fishing, any delay due to bad documentation means valuable consignments can be left sitting on the docks. Approvals & Alerts ensures that stock levels – and customer credit limits – are checked before sales are finalised, and that all the necessary documents are complete.

Austral buys and sells in different currencies such as NZD, Yen, Rupee, USD and Euro. Using the Foreign Currency module, each supplier’s accounts is tracked in a foreign currency. Invoices and other transactions are entered, processed and reported based on this currency, with a range of reports which show the unrealised exchange rate gain or loss.

“Greentree manages currency in both sides of the ledger well and makes it easier for us,” said Johnston.

Cloud option saves costs Austral’s engineering depot in Cairns needs to track costs and manage the refit of its prawn trawlers. Using the web connection, the remote users have complete online access to Greentree.

“They can process supplier invoices, payroll details, and update the general ledger just once, and we will have all the information live on one system,” said Johnston.

“There’s no double entry and one integrated system gives senior executives access to live and timely results, so business performance is constantly maintained and areas for improvement are highlighted.”

Greentree’s ability to operate comfortably in the cloud has also benefited Austral, removing the need to upgrade its on-premise servers. AOD, the cloud arm of Addax, handled the move speedily and efficiently.

“This is an excellent cost saver,” Johnston said.

“The AOD team has been great in setting up the hosting service and we expect this too will be a long-term relationship.”

With the expansion of its trading operation and the need for flexibility in the face of changing local and international markets and regulations, Austral Fisheries is confident that Greentree will continue to grow with it.

ERP system proves flexibility

Challenge

Austral Fisheries needed remote access to a real time environment, to enable its sales team to better serve its expanding customer base.

Solution

Hosting Greentree in the Cloud means data is available instantly to management and staff wherever they are as long as they have an internet connection. Thanks to Greentree4Sales, they also have customer details at their fingertips.

Results

Sales staff can conclude deals, update the system and provide documentation on the spot, and management has a live view of business performance.
The fishing part of our business is a 24/7 operation and is highly regulated. Coupled with our seafood trading operation, which has to be managed dynamically, we need business tools that can handle this sort of pressure.”

Greg-Johnston-NEW.jpgGreg Johnston (pictured) is the CFO and Company Secretary of Austral Fisheries, one of Australia’s leading commercial fishing companies. The company’s Greentree system has been in use for more than a decade, supported by Greentree Partner, Addax Business Solutions, and has proved its flexibility by scaling up to meet the company’s growth and changing business requirements. Recent developments included moving Greentree to the Cloud and equipping Austral’s sales staff with Greentree4Sales, for greater efficiency on the move.

“It’s a good, stable all-round system that has met our special needs with some innovative approaches,” Greg says. “When we said we needed to make some changes, Greentree was able to step up and respond. The Addax team has a comprehensive understanding of Greentree, providing solid support and confidence that problems can be resolved quickly.”

New business, new demands

Austral consists of three distinct businesses, each with its own challenges:

  1. Its Southern Ocean operation runs four deep-sea fishing vessels, catching mostly Toothfish. Its focus is to value-add the catch and create a market for premium fillets for the domestic and export markets.
  2. Its prawn operation runs 10 trawlers – another value-added domestic and export market. Austral has also developed direct relationships with the main Australian supermarkets for this catch.
  3. Seafood Solutions is Austral’s seafood trading arm, mostly selling imported products from sustainable overseas fisheries to the Australian wholesale market. It accounts for over a third of Austral’s turnover and it’s the growth of this operation which put new demands on Austral’s Greentree system.

“This is a very competitive business that requires tight control of working capital and good customer service,” Greg explains. “With seafood trading, you have to be able to conclude business on the spot. You don’t want to tell the customer you’ll get back to them, or promise them product only to find there’s no stock available.”

An invaluable sales tool

In Greentree4Sales, Austral has found a tool that is invaluable for its sales team, who can now access Greentree on the move via mobile devices.

“Our sales reps need live information at their fingertips,” says Greg. “They need to be able to conclude business when visiting customers. Greentree4Sales means they can process orders and provide copies to the customer before leaving their premises. They don’t have that backlog of paperwork and they can even do special deals right there and then.”

With the strict regulatory requirements around commercial fishing, any delay due to bad documentation means valuable consignments can be left sitting on the docks.  Approvals & Alerts ensures that stock levels – and customer credit limits – are checked before sales are finalised, and that all the necessary documents are complete.

Austral buys and sells in different currencies such as NZD, Yen, Rupee, USD and Euro. Using the Foreign Currency module, each supplier’s accounts is tracked in a foreign currency. Invoices and other transactions are entered, processed and reported based on this currency, with a range of reports which show the unrealised exchange rate gain or loss.

“Greentree manages currency in both sides of the ledger well and makes it easier for us,” says Greg.

Cloud option saves costs

Austral’s engineering depot in Cairns needs to track costs and manage the refit of its prawn trawlers. Using the web connection, the remote users have complete online access to Greentree.

“They can process supplier invoices, payroll details, and update the general ledger just once, and we will have all the information live on one system,” says Greg. “There’s no double entry and one integrated system gives senior executives access to live and timely results, so business performance is constantly maintained and areas for improvement are highlighted.”

Greentree’s ability to operate comfortably in the Cloud has also benefited Austral, removing the need to upgrade its on-premise servers. AOD, the Cloud arm of Addax, handled the move speedily and efficiently.

“This is an excellent cost saver,” Greg says. “The AOD team has been great in setting up the hosting service and we expect this too will be a long-term relationship.”

With the expansion of its trading operation and the need for flexibility in the face of changing local and international markets and regulations, Austral Fisheries is confident that Greentree will continue to grow with it.

“The future is exciting, with our growth and diversification plans,” Greg concludes. “Greentree will make the journey much easier, more enjoyable and assist the prospects for success.”