Preparing for Growth: C³’s New ERP System

At C³, we’re always seeking out ways to make things better. You’ve come to expect this with our engineering philosophy, but this mentality truly impacts every part of the business. Our latest example of this is an internal change and it’s one that will help us communicate better with you, our customers and vendors. 

A few years back, our CEO, Joe Van De Hey, recognized that we were outgrowing some of the processes we had in place. He knew if we could find a way to consolidate the information we tracked, we would in turn improve our time and parts management. We could then track and communicate the progress of our projects more accurately. 

Joe V. knew he needed to find the right people and tools to help carry us into the future efficiently. That’s when our Controller, Joe Rossmeissl, stepped in. “I knew from day one that Joe R. was the right person for this task,” says Joe V. “We needed someone with enthusiasm and energy – and the right skill-set.” Joe R. not only had the accounting and finance background we needed, he also stays focused on the team. “He’s always looking for solutions,” says Tiffany, our HR Manager. “He’s proactive about problem-solving in a way that makes people’s lives better. He gets that the people drive the business, not the numbers.”

Joe R. recently led our company through this important change by implementing a new enterprise resource planning system, or ERP. Watch our video to hear from Joe R. about what our goal was with the ERP and how it impacts our business.

Simplify and Automate

Joe V. could see the need for change coming: “We were successful with what we had, but we were outgrowing the processes we had in place. The old system was too complicated and we knew we could do better.”

A major part of “better” meant finding a way to merge information into one internal resource. When implementing the ERP, Joe R. explains, “Our main goal was to take three or four disparate systems and integrate them into one so that it becomes systematic for everyone, and we’re doing things the same way throughout the organization.”

We love using automation with our machines because it ensures consistency, so it only made sense to us that systemizing and automating some of our operations would have the same result. “We design our machines so that there’s a consistent process, and that yields quality,” says Joe R. “There’s a parallel between that and the way we did our ERP. We made things systematic so that people have to enter data and transactions the same way. We’re going to get a quality result because of that.”

A Smooth Transition

One of the biggest changes this ERP brought for us is in the way we’re ordering parts from our vendors. The new system is designed with better parts management in mind, meaning components are now put together in kits. By communicating a project number to our vendors, we can now order parts on one pallet or cart and move them right into production. This gives us total confidence in our parts inventory so our assembly stays on schedule.

How does this impact our customers? We are now better able to support you with improved efficiency as we complete projects. Our new system gives us real-time visibility of our operations so we can monitor projects’ progress throughout the pipeline. As Joe R. explains, “Customers will appreciate the way they can interact with employees at C³ and find that it’s consistent. No matter who they’re talking to, they’re going to get a similar experience and they’re going to get similar forms from us like acknowledgments, invoices, and purchase orders.”

The transition likely went unnoticed by customers with Joe R.’s successful lead. He was able to communicate with department leaders and execute tests so everyone could practice before the new system went live. In fact, our ERP partner tells us it was their smoothest go-live to date.

Looking back, though, the way everyone adopted the new system is what stands out the most to Joe R. “I’m most proud of the way that the team came together to put this software into service. They all had hurdles to face, and they did a nice job coming together.”