Wilts is the UK’s largest independent electrical wholesaler, with over 70 branches throughout the South of the UK. The company prides itself on its customer service, for which it has received several awards. In 2008, it was named Wholesaler of the Year in the Electrical Industry Awards 2008.
Keeping customers happy is top of the agenda at Wilts. Customers purchasing goods from Wilts will often place an order via the trade counters and request delivery onsite. The range of items ordered varies in size and value, and at the top end includes large engineering equipment. Items need to be sent out on time and to the correct location to ensure that customers feel they are receiving a good service. If goods do not reach their intended destination, particularly in the case of the larger orders, high delivery charges may be incurred.
Getting data right is not always that easy as many of the addresses that Wilts delivers to are new-build developments. As a result, Wilts needed a contact data management solution to prevent problems caused by incorrect or incomplete addresses.
Wilts appointed Chelford SAP Solutions (part of the Solarsoft group), to install SAP ERP. As part of the implementation, Wilts was looking for a software tool to enable the company’s 700 employees to enter customer data quickly and efficiently. An original address management supplier was selected and a period of testing began. Despite significant time and effort being invested by Chelford, and numerous calls to the supplier’s support line, the original solution was never deemed stable enough to take out of the development stage.
"There were challenges with the solution in terms of capability and stability," explains Chelford Solution Architect, Stephen Jerram. "There were two problems. Firstly, it was too difficult for staff to use, and secondly, it was always unstable in the development environment."
Chelford reached a point where it decided that enough management and consultancy time had been spent trying to get the system live. Chelford recommended that Wilts should switch to Experian Data Quality as it had successfully integrated its address validation solution SAP, several times.
After the problems it had experienced with the first solution, Wilts was happy to take Chelford's advice. It was happier still when Chelford managed to complete the integration of SAP in just two days. Because of Chelford’s previous experience of working with Experian Data Quality, it was able to manage the integration without any Experian Data Quality involvement.
Stephen Jerram comments, "Wilts was delighted with the slickness of the solution and with its stability and usability. It’s easy to install, easy to use, and it does what it says on the tin. There’s very little training needed, and if you do need any help, the Experian Data Quality support team is always easy to get hold of."
Stephen adds, "An added benefit was the development work that Experian Data Quality had undertaken on address cleaning as part of its QAS4 programme. As part of the programme, Experian Data Quality takes products such the address cleaning tool, and builds a specific solution for enterprise applications such as SAP ERP. This integration work is then tested and certified by SAP which makes our work much more straight forward."
Initial feedback from users at Wilts has been very positive too. Nigel Hirst, IT Manager at Wilts, comments "The Experian Data Quality software produces fast and accurate results. The Not Yet Built functionality is also proving extremely useful for the delivery of goods to properties still under construction."