JC Paper is a distributor of fine printing paper, food service and janitorial supplies. From its base in Fremont, California, the company services Northern California and Reno, Nevada and also operates four retail stores in the region. These stores sell reams of paper, janitorial or industrial products and paper plates to consumers and also act as mini warehouses, which are used as distribution hubs but with a retail front-end.
In addition, the company has a production facility in Southern San Francisco that makes envelopes. Typically, 95 percent of JC Paper's business is wholesale. Out of six competitors in Northern California, JC Paper is number three in terms of sales - an impressive achievement for a small independent.
In business for over 48 years, JC Paper is one of two independent paper merchants on the west coast of the USA. As such, JC Paper deals with highly competitive pressures in the marketplace. Low margins, pricing and quality requirements, short turn-around, tight delivery schedules and safe inventory levels are just a few of the daily operational challenges that JC Paper faces.
JC Paper's base of 7,500 customers can call in, fax or email their orders as late as 18:00 hours. 90 percent of all orders require next-day delivery. An average 3,000 order lines are processed per day through JC Paper's 18,000 square meter warehouse.
With two different systems for distribution software and warehouse management software, the biggest problem for JC Paper was the synchronization of data. After learning that one of these SCM systems was discontinuing, the company realized that the best way to solve the problem was by installing one integrated supply chain software solution for its business.
Solution and capabilities
JC Paper went through an eight-month selection process before choosing IBS integrated supply chain management software. The main reason for this choice was the IBS commitment to integrate Radio Frequency (RF) with Warehouse Management software. Other vendors did not give the same assurances and obligation to the project.
IBS has provided JC Paper with an automated paper distribution system. In a tight market, integrated and automated sales orders, campaign planning and analysis and reporting are key areas that help find and retain customers. JC Paper has gained complete control over inventory with optimized, automated warehousing and the ability to plan, simulate and replenish accurately and quickly.
IBS covers JC Paper's needs for distribution software, financial software, inventory control software, warehouse management software with RF support, customer service software and advanced pricing options. Planning and configuration tools help the company to meet short lead-times and fulfil back-to-back orders, keeping its customers happy and ensuring next-day deliveries.
When customer service representatives input orders, pick instructions are dispatched to the warehouse staff via RF. Inventory is updated in real time while the orders are picked in the RF terminal. JC Paper has particularly benefited from IBS Inventory Control software. Inventory software module helps the company replenish the right products at the right time, and at efficient quantities, with great improvements in performance.
Once orders have been picked, the final steps are to prepare the products for shipment and produce the shipping paperwork. Inventory availability can be seen immediately and the product moves from allocation to ship. For fast, efficient deliveries, JC Paper runs 28 truck routes per day.
In the near future, e-business software will allow JC Paper's national accounts to have real-time access to a wide variety of merchandise. Customers will be able to perform on-line ordering and get access to product information, stock availability, order status and even credit status via the Internet.
In short, IBS has wrapped up JC Paper's business needs in a new package, complete with fast ROI, business performance measurement and value.
Benefits and value
The implementation of IBS paper distribution software at JC Paper was split, starting with a small segment of its business. After smoothing out some creases the rest of the company went live three months later. The most immediate benefit was the effect of a fully integrated distribution software solution.
The biggest impact made by IBS inventory software was with inventory accuracy, which is now running at 99.8 percent. With IBS inventory control software installed, JC Paper is proud to boast that if stock is available at the time of ordering, it would definitely be on the shelf to pick. Making correct and quick decisions about stock replenishment has improved total efficiency and profitability.
More information is now available at the customer service reps fingertips, enabling a leap ahead in customer service for JC Paper.
Seamless integration has resulted in higher efficiency, improved communication and company-wide performance. JC Paper has found the best software package for its paper distribution business. IBS has made the company's further expansion into janitorial and food service distribution a trouble-free process.