“Anveo showed that they had absolute experience and expertise, understanding the share business as a startup. They understood that we wanted to move quickly and preserve a high level of service, and they saw the potential of our growing company.”
Electronic Data Interchange with Anveo EDI Connect
A scalable EDI solution for a growing startup: Anveo and share
Doing good with everyday purchases – that’s the motto on which share was founded in 2018. Based on the “buy one-share one” principle, the Berlin-based company offers everyday products, such as bottled water, nut bars, soaps, and stationery. A matching donation is included in each product: clean water, meals, sanitation, and access to schooling. Since then, the socially responsible company has greatly expanded both their product line and team, always working to help more people in need.
Completely manual order and invoice processes were the standard when the company launched, but by 2019 share was looking for a better way to support their teams and sustain their rapid growth. As a newer company, they were working in a fast-changing environment, and it was imperative to avoid mistakes and double work.
Matteo Dubini, ERP Manager at share remembers the initial situation. “In terms of order and invoice volumes, we were already consuming the finance capacities with repetitive tasks. If we wanted to grow further, we needed to focus on streamlining internal processes and work on improving the return on investment in our teams. That’s where EDI came into place.”
While they had looked at other alternatives, EDI was a well-established solution used by most of their business partners. Their team saw the chance to automate processes within their Microsoft Dynamics Business Central Online system.
Year of Foundation: 2018
Industry: Consumer goods
Employees: over 100
Headquarters: Berlin, Germany
Project start with Anveo EDI Connect: End of February 2020
Data fomat: EDIFACT
First go-live with Anveo: Mid-May 2020
Data transmissions per month: Approx. 3000 transmissions per month, with an expected 4-5000 transmissions in 2023
Requirements and Decision Making
Share was looking for an EDI solution that could support them locally, to avoid misunderstandings and delays in the project. But even more importantly, they wanted a solution that offered the following:
- 100% Microsoft Dynamics Business Central Online integrated
- comprehensive EDI solution that can grow along with the company and is suitable for both current and future requirements
- individually customizable to the share business processes
- good usability for all teams
- showed expertise with both EDI and specific requirements for startups
- transparent and flexible costs
With their growing business, a fast implementation was necessary, while still preserving a high-service level for their customers.
Project Implementation and Results
The initial contact was made between share and Anveo in November of 2019. However, the startup decided to first expand their IT team and solidify internal structures and processes before the project kick-off in February 2020.
Matteo discussed the clear division of labor in the project, which helped everyone stay on a reasonable timeline. Anveo was responsible for the installation and configuration of the EDI Connect module in Business Central Online, handling all the mappings and setup, as well as the unit testing phase, whereas the test for integration, multifactional, and user acceptance were done by share directly. They wanted to ensure that they understood the solution and were happy with everything before go-live.
EDI Business Transactions after go-live in 2020.
The original project was to connect share’s two largest customers, using EDIFACT messages to implement incoming sales orders and outgoing invoices. The go-live dates were staggered, with the first partner going live in Mid-May, and the second in Mid-June. Shortly after this, the decision was made to also integrate one of their 3PL warehouses, adding several new messages, including deliveries, picking and packing, and inventory reports.
When the first KPIs and details became available, one major point was easily visible: there had been a drastic reduction in errors on all incoming processes. Overall, this led to a reduction in errors across the company, as each process built on each other: from order creation to processing, to shipment and invoicing. The decision was then made to integrate further customers.
KPIs for the share EDI Business Transactions since go-live in 2020.
In addition to working with the EDI Connect module, share also implemented the Anveo Managed File Transfer platform. “MFT is the first gate between share’s ERP system and the rest of the world,” states Matteo. This very useful web application provides him with an overview of both everything that was planned and took place, as well as the planned transmissions that didn’t happen, making MFT a critical addition to their EDI processes.
EDI @ share: status quo and future growth
As of October 2022, share is executing over 3500 transactions monthly via Anveo EDI Connect. This includes 9 live interfaces for 11 customers and a third-party logistics provider. Their transactions include incoming orders, delivery order confirmations, goods receipts, stock movements, inventory reports, and proof of deliveries, as well as outgaining order acknowledgements, delivery orders, and invoices. They are targeting a total of 4000-5000 transactions monthly in 2023, as they work to add new customer, suppliers, and improve the 3PL integration.
Due to the optimized processes in supply chain, logistics, and finance, share can focus more on their core business as it continues to expand. Matteo concludes that there are still further customers and suppliers that they would like to integrate, as well as additional EDI messages for current exchange partners. His team is looking to make these processes fully EDI capable, and to continue to let the solution grow with the organization.
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