Par-Pak is a global designer and manufacturer of rigid plastic packaging with a solid reputation for quality, service and competitive pricing. Manufacturing products mainly for the bakery, deli and food service industries, Par-Pak has manufacturing facilities in Canada, USA and the United Kingdom.
To continue to grow their business, Par-Pak needed to update their internal business systems. People at Par-Pak were spending too much time on time-consuming manual processes, and the lack of information from the many disparate systems was hurting the bottom line. The current owner, Mr. Sajjad Ebrahim, purchased the company in 1977, and has continued to grow the company at an average rate of 10-15% per year. In the late 1980s Par-Pak found themselves in a situation of extreme growth with over 80% growth within one year. With growth, and further plans to expand the company, it became evident that an integrated business system was needed to support the day-to-day activities and growth plans of this leading plastics packaging company.
“Prior to implementing Solarsoft’s iVP software, most of the processes were manual,” explained Kevin Rosairo, IT Manager at Par-Pak. “We were struggling with disparate systems, and too much time wasted on manual processes. All of our scheduling done on Excel spreadsheets, and we had no costing system to speak of. The old systems could no longer support the business, and were hindering the future growth of the company.”
“We chose Solarsoft because of the flexibility of the iVP software. We liked that Solarsoft had offices globally, including an office right here in the Toronto area. Other key factors in the decision were the efficient materials requirements planning (MRP) and event-based production reporting,” said Rosairo. “With event-based reporting, we can now tell exactly what is being produced, and what the production status is, on each machine on our shop floor.”
Par-Pak has been utilizing the iVP software in North America since the original go-live in 1994, and more recently implemented the full iVP system in their UK operations. “The full installation in our UK operation was quite quick. The iVP system with order entry, inventory, purchasing, production control, production planning, forecasting, material requirements planning, scheduling and shipping modules was up and running within a couple of months. The financial system had already been transferred to iVP prior to the main implementation,” said Rosairo. “Our UK operation is also using the graphical scheduling tools and Bills of Materials analysis tools iVP provides. Requisitions for material purchases are automatically generated by the Materials Resource Planning functions within iVP. We are also implementing COGNOS Business Intelligence tools for reporting and dashboards.”
Benefits & Results
Par-Pak’s North American locations are currently running on three databases, on one single server. “Having previously worked for an enterprise software vendor, and now working with the system as an end user, I have seen both sides the situation. Since I started with Par-Pak, we’ve been very happy with the support Solarsoft provides, and with how easy it is for us to reach customer support. We can log issues via the internet, phone, or e-mail, and Solarsoft can log right into our system to troubleshoot issues, if needed. We can also download upgrade patches automatically,” said Rosairo. “Now we don’t need a large IT department to support our business software, the iVP software has turned out to be very easy to support.”
Some of the material handling functionality within iVP has impressed the most. “By using the material resource planning functionality in iVP, the software tells us what we have to order, and when. We also have full visibility and traceability into all of our production. We can tell exactly what roll and what sheet a finished product came from,” said Rosario. “We are also extensively utilizing the Electronic Data Interchange functions of iVP, and now receive purchase orders from our customers electronically. We also send order acknowledgements, Advance Shipping Notices, and invoices to customers via EDI. The electronic transactions are saving us a lot of time as the information is automatically passed between our iVP system, and the systems at our customer sites.”
Today, Par-Pak is a global supplier of thermoformed packaging, employing over 400 employees. The iVP software from Solarsoft has allowed Par-Pak to grow their business, and has supported the international expansion at Par-Pak. “We have really been able to take advantage of the iVP software, and have been growing and maturing at the same pace with Solarsoft. The partnership between the companies has been great, and we look forward to bringing more of the new functionality to our operations in Canada , USA and the UK” concluded Rosairo.