Solution 7

Ballingly Joinery cuts costs and improves efficiencies with CipherLab 8300 series

Now in its 12th year of operation, Ballingly Joinery 2000 Ltd. of Wellington Bridge, Ireland supplies custom furniture, fire doors, and screens to the building industry throughout the country. Starting as a small operation, its growth to 50 employees drove demand for better management of customer orders and materials, more efficient job processing, and improved stock and cost controls. As a small company, Ballingly managers understand the importance of cost competitiveness through higher operating efficiencies. According to Patrick Rowe, managing director, "Each machine operator spent 15 minutes a day in manual entry of their work record, which adds up to hundreds of hours each year in lost time. We knew if we could significantly reduce that time, we'd improve operations considerably." But that would require a comprehensive solution unique to their industry that was robust, easy to use, and adaptable to their growing company. Those requirements lead them to the CipherLab 8300 series mobile computers.

Ballingly Joinery teamed with Bariant Systems Ltd., developer of Jobscan software, to create a complete solution that included CipherLab 8300 series mobile computers. Deploying the 8300 series throughout the shop, materials managers and shop craftsmen save time by scanning barcodes for inventory, work flow, job processes, and order tracking right at their work site. Because of the ruggedness of the Mobile Computers, work is uninterrupted if devices are dropped or left in the dusty environment of the shop. Scanned data is instantly uploaded to Jobscan, giving managers a wide range of data about inventories, work efficiencies, order status, and more. Purchasers now have better tools to manage stock levels and negotiate more effectively with suppliers, leading to cost reductions.

Progress and job cost reports are also instantly updated and available to management at any time. They can drill down into the progress and costs of each project, and with 19 main products, they now run a monthly profit and loss report for each. "This aspect alone was worth the investment," claims Rowe. "Twenty percent of our product range is eighty percent of our turnover. We can now make informed decisions on pricing strategies and future investment. Something we couldn't do as effectively without the software and mobile computers."

Integrating the CipherLab 8300 series with Jobscan also gives management the ability to improve work practices. For example, with stocktaking of raw materials they can effectively manage inventories more quickly with by scanning barcodes. The investment of a complete solution with handheld, portable mobile computers and job management software has lead to big returns for Ballingly Joinery.

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