ERP prises open Clear Solar's financials

Friday, 20 May, 2011

Clear Solar, one of Australia's largest solar power installation companies, has implemented a business-wide enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution, giving staff a better view of the company's financials and inventory.

Clear Solar employs approximately 130 staff nationally. Based in Victoria, the organisation has offices in Queensland, New South Wales, South Australia, Western Australia and the ACT. Clear Solar-accredited electricians have installed more than 14,000 solar power systems across households and businesses in Australia.

The deployment of the ERP system followed a realisation at Clear Solar that the way the company handled its financials was not ideal.

“After several years of rapid growth, we realised that our business processes needed an overhaul,” says Paul Wilson, Managing Director for Clear Solar.

“Many of the systems that we had in place for tracking our financials were very labour intensive. This made it difficult for us to forecast and plan our inventory requirements, and delayed the production of our management reports. We were dealing lots of small inefficiencies, which added up to serious growing pains for our business,” Wilson says.

After successfully implementing an Oracle CRM OnDemand solution in 2009, Clear Solar decided to migrate to a whole-of-business ERP solution, with integrated financial management. After looking at solutions from six major software vendors, the company chose IT consultancy Dataweave to design, integrate and provide ongoing remotely managed support services for an Oracle E-Business Suite solution.

The system helps manage quotes, inventory planning and general finances at Clear Solar.

The integration between Oracle's CRM OnDemand solution and its E-Business Suite has allowed Clear Solar to gain a better view of its customer interactions. Customer service operators in the contact centre are now able to generate quotes 25% faster than previously, view the status of inventory items related to client orders and accurately estimate installation dates. Data rekeying has been eliminated, resulting in more accurate and timely information.

“Dataweave has helped us implement the project and continues to provide us with ongoing performance tuning, and 24/7 remote support for our databases and key business applications,” Wilson says.

“This frees internal resources, so that our IT team can focus on improving efficiency further, tailoring customised workflows and helping employees get the most from the solution,” Wilson says.

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