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Case Studies - ERP Solution


Client is a Commercial Kitchen Operation that prepares food for their parent company, a chain of more than 60 Cafeteria Style Restaurants across the South and Southwestern US. Clients also prepares food for third-party customers and private brand customers.

The operations of Client includes the following: a meat preparation and cutting facility; a cooked foods department that prepares a wide-range of food from Macaroni and Cheese to Vegetables, Potatoes and Cooked Desserts; a bakery department that prepares Pies, Muffins and Cakes; and a freezer-warehouse for shipping and receiving of the production products. Client also has a dry goods warehouse operation that distributes non-food items such as Plates, Silverware, Cooking Tools and Napkins for their Cafeteria Chains.

Business Challenge

Since 1988, Client has been operating with a fragmented ERP solution and disconnected systems. This unsuccessful ERP solution was a result of multiple factors including their consulting company’s lack of continued support, their parent company filing bankruptcy, and the loss of employees who were trained and responsible for managing what was implemented. All of these events contributed to their users being frustrated with a less than optimal system for their business.

Their existing ERP system generated purchase orders, operated a partial accounts payable function and tracked inventory in the warehouse. Since there was no integration to the other systems, the planning tools, such as Forecasting, MPS and MRP were not utilized. Product costing was accomplished through an off-line stand-alone system, the manufacturing management system was completely manual and the financial information was maintained on Excel worksheets. Overall, Client was working with an ERP solution that was at best operating as multiple stand-alone solutions.


Client selected PropelSys to repair their disjointed and incomplete ERP system. PropelSys assessed and validated their existing business processes and presented them with a roadmap to fulfill their requirements. This roadmap contained tasks including: cleansing the existing data, re-implementing the manufacturing and planning modules through proper setup and configuration and utilizing the built-in system integration that an ERP solution provides. PropelSys established standards for new and essential system data to utilize the fully-functional Demand and Replenishment systems for forecasting and planning. The Inventory and Warehouse Management Systems were also reviewed to ensure correct set-up and integration to support the shipping and receiving operations.

According, project manager for PropelSys, “In some ways this project was more complex than a normal ERP implementation. Since client was already in production with portions of this same ERP solution, they could not experience any downtime. Once the new processes were defined, we had to scrub the production data to realign it with the new processes. These tasks were performed with zero disruption to daily operations and no systems were taken 'Offline' during any of our project work”.

A Bill of Material system was created to consolidate all receipts into a Single, Controlled Repository including a process for routing and Labor Information for Client’ Costing System; and a costing system was designed to allow cost-type variations and changes to accurately maintain and support the price quoting and cost control functions.

To prepare users for the new solution, PropelSys conducted customized training workshops to increase employees’ system understanding. These workshops were for user teams in Product Data Management, Manufacturing, Inventory, Costing and Shop Floor.

PropelSys supported the Client users during their functional go-lives. Each new function was taken live as it was tested, trained and made operational - all accomplished during regular business with zero production downtime thereby preserving the integrity of Client’ service levels to their customers.


Client can now view their entire business operations on one system due to the support that PropelSys provided Client project team on this successful ERP implementation. With the new solution in place, Client can now make demand-driven decisions within all of their departments from the shipping and receiving in the bakery and cooked-foods to the meat and dry-goods. Manual intervention, such as phone calls or personal visits from the supervisors to validate data and inventory status, is no longer required. The Material Requirements Planning System provides visibility to the internal customer requests and costing is now based on current cost calculations of what is in the bill of material and actual operations, versus expired spreadsheets.

And the buyers and supply managers can review the demand for materials based on actual orders instead of verbal commitments and conversations.

PropelSys’s Food and Beverage’s business processes knowledge, system implementation expertise and project delivery methodologies helped Client redesign, re-implement and optimize their ERP solution. “The expertise that PropelSys offered was essential in developing an ERP system that worked for us. Their flexibility and extensive solution set allowed the implementation design to be structured around our specific requirements”, said CFO.

Client now benefits from efficient and enterprise-wide connectivity to deliver four-star quality food services, providing the flexibility to achieve a competitive advantage as their business expands into new markets and services.

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