We run a custom fabrication business that encompasses two retail stores, one company workroom and up to four specialized outsourced factories.
October 2015 Update
Since the original story covered in 2012, U-Fab expanded to three stores.
We also special order over 75 fabrics per week from around 20 vendor. While we do have a robust POS system, we still use smartQ to track and monitor all these orders so that we ensure all backorders, delays and special instructions are communicated to our customers and vendors. Not only does smartQ adapt to our ever changing process but it is much easier for our less technical sales staff to use and understand.
We run a custom fabrication business that encompasses two retail stores, one company workroom and up to four specialized outsourced factories. Before smartQ, we really had no way to track or organize our work orders. Jobs were constantly falling through the cracks due to misplaced work orders, and we were on the phones with each other non-stop.
Now, with smartQ, we enter each job along with images of the item, materials and a copy of the work order. As the job progresses, the workrooms are able to move the order along, and our retail stores can see the status of each job in real time. When there are questions or problems, the workroom uses smartQ to email questions and pictures to the salesperson. We are also able to track all customer communication, so everyone knows when and what has been communicated to the end consumer. There is no doubt that we save 10+ hours a week in communication and jobs don’t fall through the cracks anymore.
We have also started using smartQ as a Kanban system for handling special orders and re-orders on stock items. This simplified system has allowed us to order inventory much more quickly as well as manage backorders and maintain proper control.
The best part is we are able to do all of this for under $100/month, and we are able to give our outside vendors access and rights to the system very easily. Plus, since smartQ is so simple and intuitive, we have almost no training issues at all. The ROI we achieve from smartQ is incredible.