California Fruits & Flavors ERP Case Study for Deacom
About The Company
California Custom Fruits & Flavors, Inc. (CCFF) is a global supplier of customized fruit and flavor ingredients for the dairy, bakery, beverage and food service industries. Since its inception in 1986 CCFF has grown steadily by focusing on innovative flavor engineering and production as well as an unwavering emphasis on quality and customer service.
When CFO Jim Fragnoli joined CCFF he found a highly customized ERP solution that was unable to keep up with the rapidly evolving business demands of the company. “It quickly became clear to us that we needed to start evaluating ERP options,” Jim Fragnoli, stated. “There were a number of functions that the [existing] system could not handle and our customization costs were becoming a significant burden on the growth of the business.”
After analysis of their business model, CCFF came to the conclusion that their biggest functional needs for a new system centered on formula management, inventory tracking and financial reporting.
CCFF evaluated four different software systems that met the basic functional needs of their business and chose DEACOM, largely because of Deacom’s software development philosophy, which is rooted in simplicity and evolution. Deacom’s model would allow CCFF to have the flexibility normally only provided by a customized solution and the rapid evolution capability of a configurable solution.
DEACOM also offered functionality not found in the other ERP systems, including formula revision tracking, inventory control, job scheduling, demand planning, cost comparison tools, flexible report generation tools and Excel® data export tools. CCFF worked with Deacom’s experienced implementation team to configure the software to their unique business requirements. CCFF expected one of the biggest implementation challenges would be familiarizing the warehouse teams with DEACOM. Unlike the rest of the company, these employees did not have experience using ERP software and they would need to quickly adopt the scanner technology used for warehouse management. With the help of Deacom trainers, the CCFF team realized how simple the DEACOM system is to learn.
“Prior to DEACOM, our users were not well-versed on ERP software,” Jim said. “I really liked the simplicity of the system. It required very little training to bring all our users up to speed with the new system. I’ve done four ERP implementations in my life and this was far and away the easiest, smoothest implementation.”
Results & Benefits
Productivity has increased throughout the company as a result of implementing DEACOM. The biggest efficiency improvement is in their warehouse and production operations. “DEACOM has enabled us to run our warehouse efficiently enough that we no longer need to run production on Saturdays to keep up with demand. Plus, our inventory is extremely accurate with the warehouse management system in control.”
CCFF has also seen vast improvements in their formula management capabilities. They are now able to view all of their formulas and easily monitor revisions. “Formula management was a big, big piece of the decision making and DEACOM excelled in this area.” The completely integrated formula management module gives CCFF the ability to revise and track formulas, keeping records every step of the way. Additionally, this module allows formula changes to instantly impact inventory, production requirements and planning.
“We are on a good path. I look at what we are accomplishing with DEACOM and I would say that the reality is that if I had to do it all over again, there is no question I would choose DEACOM.”