A powerful level of management information and visibility

“Vecta really helps me to beat targets and to decide and plan where my time is best spent; it also identifies additional sales opportunities and highlights any issues that arise enabling me to deal with them quickly I am now completely self-sufficient with all of the information I need, when I need it and how I need it.”

The Company

Founded in Peterborough in 1992, Gardman supply over 4000 garden, living, wild bird care and pet care product lines to garden centres in the UK, and export to 35 countries. With international sales accounting for 16% of group turnover, Gardman has flourished, with turnover increasing from £1.4m in its first year to in excess of £60m today.

An innovative business, Gardman regularly launches new categories and product ranges, with particular focus placed on advanced stock planning and control to ensure that they always meet customer demand. As a result, between their two locations; the Peterborough HQ and the production, packaging and distribution facilities in Kings Lynn, Gardman houses over £60 million stock at retail value ready to be delivered on demand. So comprehensive sales analysis including accurate customer and product trend awareness is vital. Currently enjoying an exciting new phase of development, Gardman are further strengthening and building upon their reputation as market leaders and driving their brands forward to deliver significant growth opportunities for customers.

So what were the problems Gardman were experiencing and how would Vecta resolve them?

Gardman employs a team of independent sales agents to work with an extensive customer base and they recognised a need to feed both their staff and their agents more efficiently with accurate information to provide a knowledgeable and personal service to customers. It was also important to them to ensure consistent and clear visibility of sales trends to ensure full utilisation of their stock investment. There was also the opportunity for Vecta to provide a centralised system providing the management team at Gardman with detailed insight. This would help them direct proactive alerts or prompts to the Sales Agents relating to customer needs that the HQ team might become aware of.

A standard spreadsheet style of reporting and information collation had been available, but as is regularly the case, this required complex custom report writing and the information was delivered via huge spreadsheets which were very time consuming, both for the Gardman Finance and IT teams to create, and for the Agents to analyse. Despite spending a considerable amount of time producing daily reports, the staff and agents were still unable to access information as easily and quickly as they needed to. Access to relevant analysis of daily sales or the products their customers were buying had become problematic, graphical representation was minimal and they were unable to drill through the data or change criteria to identify issues or achieve a clear view of what they needed at any given time.

As the business grew the provision and access to sales information and analysis became unmanageable and Gardman recognised the need to improve the quality, ease and timeliness of sales information being provided to their teams. They needed to introduce a way of providing information that was sustainable, timely and would grow with the business, and were keen to implement a solution that would help to drive efficiency within the Sales environment, enable them to support business decisions and boost sales activity and results.

 

Gardman, the UKs leading garden products supplier