In a business that handles more than 700 million components from 340,000 product lines, Anglia’s most important business criteria are to offer same-day order shipping from stock and to provide complete customer service. The company distributes a comprehensive range of electronic components to industrial customers for use in equipment that generally employs a printed circuit board.
Anglia Components is a privately owned company with its head office in Wisbech, England. It also has a site in Hong Kong. The company’s suppliers include some of the world’s leading electronic component brands, complemented by many smaller companies with leadership in their chosen technologies.
Selecting IBS financial software
With speed and reliability so essential to its supply chain, Anglia has always tried to keep as much of its IT requirement in-house as possible. The company employs an IT team that handles the development, maintenance and running of Anglia’s self-built distribution system. The company used to have its own financial system, which it had run since the early 1980s, but it switched to IBS system just prior to Y2K.
“Our business is very dynamic and fast-changing,” explains Pete Abbott, an analyst programmer at Anglia. “As a company, we have traditionally preferred to have in-house programmers so we can react quickly to any changes. However, we needed a new financial system, so we decided to find a company we could work with that would support our business ethos. We evaluated several products and companies and decided that IBS had a product that was excellent and consultants who would be fully committed to ensuring successful implementation and running of the system.”
In 1999, Anglia implemented IBS financial management software. “Of key importance to us was how the system would integrate with the existing distribution applications,” Abbott says. “IBS is designed as an ERP system, so integration is inherent within the software, but how well would it work with our software? The answer was apparent from the start – very well.”
With almost 18,000 customers actively trading and 480,000 orderlines to process, IBS financial software has provided Anglia with the flexibility it needs in all areas of financial reporting and control routines. The rich functionality seamlessly handles accounting and financial reporting to suit the company’s changing business needs. The powerful application boasts extensive functions to process all customer and supplier accounting, and is an efficient tool to streamline payments.
Fast upgrade from old to new
Until 2006, Anglia continued to operate successfully on the same system. “We were very happy with the software and the IBS people who supported it,” says Abbott. “We built up a strong relationship with the IBS consultants. They knew our team as individuals and how we worked, and were always able to offer assistance in a manner suited to our own methods.”
However, after such a long time with the same financial system, Anglia had become the UK customer with the oldest surviving release of IBS software. It was time to change. Over a single weekend, Anglia went from oldest to newest. “Transferring from the old system to the latest, IBS Enterprise 6.0, was remarkably smooth,” Abbott says. “The new release enables lots more in terms of functionality and capabilities, but we were able to incorporate our legacy data and modifications with relative ease.”
Anglia managed to upgrade the system, transfer the data, test it and get it live without any loss of service. Abbott points out the final switch was done over a weekend, in no more than a couple of hours.
Integrated financial management
With IBS financial software Anglia has found a financial solution that is fully integrated with all its business processes, that monitors cash flow and helps reduce debtor days outstanding. The software offers a convenient interface for processing batch updates from various process areas.
The IBS system has an extremely flexible, dynamic, table-driven accounting and bookkeeping set-up. Importing data from external databases is made easy via a general interface that uses a pre-defined table layout. Users can easily import data, such as payroll information, payments, invoices, etc. into Accounts Payable, Accounts Receivable or the General Ledger. Anglia is able to post figures rapidly and accurately and benefit from the software through savings and increased customer satisfaction, all while complying with regulations.
“We were also impressed with how straightforward it was to integrate with our other systems right from the start,” he says. “Our first month-end, which is always a good test, went with barely a hitch. We are on over 99 percent delivery performance and rising.”
Looking forward, Abbott can see further opportunities for the relationship with IBS to grow. “We are looking to expand the business into new markets and territories, and we will want to maintain consistency with our systems,” he says. “IBS has delivered in all areas for us. The financial software has provided the power, functionality, reliability and integration we needed. The people have always responded quickly and well to our needs, keeping us informed and delivering what we need to have delivered.”