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As Rothco, America's leading wholesale supplier of outdoor and military apparel and gear, began increasing its offshore production, sourcing and sales in 1999, its IT needs quickly grew beyond the systems it had been using for some time.
"We knew we needed a global supply chain solution that could handle both import and export," says Anthony Prossi, director of information technology for the Ronkonkoma, N.Y.-based company. "We needed a highly automated, high-speed order entry system that could handle a broad and diverse range of products with very high online order-to-purchase capabilities and pricing accuracy."
Essentially, Rothco needed a full enterprise system with global capabilities for purchase order, inventory control, inbound logistics, accounting and finance. After reviewing more than 30 vendors, Rothco selected 3rdwave Global Commerce Management from Blinco Systems.
"3rdwave delivered on all of these areas in one tightly integrated solution," says Prossi.
Rothco's imports are now almost 80 percent of its total product mix, an amount that has doubled in recent years and is likely to increase even more. To manage this extended supply chain, Rothco needed visibility of purchase orders as well as the actual inbound inventory data and the exact arrival time.
"3rdwave gives us complete ability to manage the import stream of goods," Prossi says.
On the outbound side, Blinco customized a sales order management system within 3rdwave for Rothco that allowed the customer service reps to increase order processing from 1,100 SKU lines in an eight-hour day to over 1,700 lines for a 55 percent productivity increase.
The wholesaler's customers include domestic and international retailers of sportswear, fashion and uniforms, as well as military, police forces, security firms and screen printers. While taking an order, 3rdwave does an online credit history and order history validation.
"Our reps can quote prices instantly, know exactly what's in stock, and meet all domestic and global trade compliance and documentation requirements," says Prossi.
The flexible technology of 3rdwave means that it will be even more valuable as Rothco's online orders increase. Between 25 and 33 percent of all orders are now coming through the company's B2B system linked to 3rdwave. As the orders are entered, 3rdwave loads them into an Oracle database, makes sure the items are in stock, handles the sales order management, and then it then does pick, pack and ship processes--all within Rothco's exacting service standards. Orders must be picked accurately and ready to ship via UPS within three hours with 99.9 percent reliability. In stock, available-to-promise inventory must also be 99.9 percent.
"Our ability to take sales orders very quickly, having the merchandise in stock, and getting the goods out the door are what has made us number one in our market," says Prossi. "We've been able to grow our business as other customers have found out that we are able to consistently deliver on our client promises. I believe we would not be doing this if we were not running 3rdwave by Blinco Systems."
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