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Manufacturing

Case Study:

Talley Group selects Dynamics AX

UK-based SME Talley Group implemented Dynamics AX with Microsoft partner eBECS.

Talley Group is a UK-based SME designing and manufacturing a large range of medical devices for the global healthcare market from its UK headquarters near Southampton. It designs and develops a comprehensive range of dynamic pressure area care; sequential compression therapy; negative pressure wound therapy and broad spectrum antimicrobial services, along with a range of wipe clean pillows and duvets for the medical market.

The company has expanded to service many European countries and the USA and exports to India, China and South America.

After 18 months using Dynamics AX and with the invaluable help of eBECS, we can see a distinct reduction in the cost of administration at Talley Group and a noticeable improvement in customer services

Tyrone White, Talley Group
 
The company supplies through direct sales and service operations within the UK, or through international distribution partners. In total, Talley Group offers over 50 product types with over 10,000 individual items, which it supplies and rents primarily to hospitals, nursing homes and GP surgeries.

The operation run by Talley Group is focused on lean manufacturing, and when it first opened discussions with Microsoft Dynamics AX partner, eBECS, in early 2009, it was this that the company was most keen to support. “Microsoft Dynamics AX was the only true lean-enabled ERP solution available on the market, “ says Tyrone White, head of manufacturing at Talley Group.

Talley was committed to lean manufacturing and actively sought out an integrator that would understand its requirements, the most important of which was to identify waste and remove it from the process. In addition, with so much of Talley’s work focused on the rental market, the company wanted to ensure that a new IT solution could support not only its own needs, but also those of its customers.

eBECS was able to bring vast experience and understanding of lean manufacturing software to Talley Group. ‘Lean Enterprise for Microsoft Dynamics AX’ was originally developed by eBECS and bought by Microsoft, before the two partners created the Lean Centre of Excellence – now an education and training resource for the Microsoft partner community.

For Talley Group, the familiarity of eBECS with Microsoft Dynamics AX was a major advantage. White says: “We wanted to change our existing ERP system and Microsoft Dynamics AX seemed to fit our functional requirements and the lean principles we were looking for. Working with the eBECS team, which intimately understands both our business and Dynamics AX has been invaluable in building a solution that really matches our needs.”

The success of the implementation is down to the flexibility of the product, according to White. He says: “We were already running a lean operation throughout the business, but Dynamics AX is designed in such a way that we were able to work with eBECS to adapt it to suit our manufacturing, supply chain and logistics processes.”

eBECS also developed a rental module to support Talley’s specific requirements. This bolts on to Dynamics AX and is broad in scope. “Our rental business is very broad,” continued White, “so we needed something that could support it. We are trialling the rental module at the moment. It is important to us because a significant proportion of our revenues come from rental – if we get this right it will be worth the resource effort both in terms of finance and time.”

Talley Group has, from the outset, planned a first, second and third phase of Microsoft Dynamics AX over three years, and is currently in the second phase. The company is using the solution across its entire operation and the impact in all departments that has been significant:

IT

  • Previous legacy system meant collating data on Excel spreadsheets. AX enabled Talley to bring everything together into one ERP solution delivering a single source of data accessible to all departments


Manufacturing

  • AX gives an accurate picture of the manufacturing process updated every 20 minutes
  • Lead times can be improved by identifying and acting on any problems with the supply of materials
  • Peaks and troughs in the process can be smoothed out, providing efficiency savings in the overall cost of manufacturing products.

Finance

  • Decisions are made on an informed basis using a single source of data
  • Since using AX the stock inventory has been reduced by 25 per cent
  • Faster time to shipping, increased shipping capacity and a reduction in the size of the despatch team has also reduced costs.


Operations

  • Thanks to the automating of the system through AX, customers can be given accurate information about delivery and invoicing
  • Parts are always stocked on the delivery vans.


Sales

  • More detailed and accurate sales analysis is now delivered
  • Product margin information is more detailed which informs the sales team.


“After 18 months using Microsoft Dynamics AX, and with the invaluable help of eBECS, we can see a distinct reduction in the cost of administration at Talley Group and a noticeable improvement in customer services. The growth and stability of our company is, in effect, being supported by our use of AX,” concludes White.

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