Project Description

Speeding up daily sales cycle for a group of Flower Exporters

An association of 30 flower exporters at cooperative flower auction premises in Rotterdam. The daily process cycle starts a day before with collecting customer orders, purchasing takes place early morning at auction, the purchased flower trollies are received and stock inventory is updated, the flowers are unpacked and re-packed, loaded in trucks for various destinations, customs documents and invoices prepared, and flowers are delivered as per orders.

Challenges

The purchased flowers are manually entered into the system. This is introducing errors, inconsistency and confusion. Every day a delay is caused in loading the trucks which travel to various airports and by road to different European countries. Delivery delays are causing lot of unsatisfied customers and endangering the business resulting in eventual loss. A request from the organization to play consultant/project manager role to improve processes, reduce manual entry errors and speed up the delivery.

Solution

Discussions with IT department of Flower Auction. Understanding, evaluating and analyzing current processes of exporters. Preparation of a plan to improve existing processes and to define new processes. A proposal was prepared, accepted and implemented for full automation of the processes from purchase at auction till unpacking-packing of flowers. Important element was to reduce manual entry errors by developing an online interface between auction clocks and exporters’ flower administration system.

Results

The manual entry errors disappeared. Work pressure was lowered, frustration levels minimized on the work floor and on time delivery increased resulting into customer satisfaction and increased export revenues.