Xinator, a Customizable ERP Solution
Customizing Xinator (the affordable, useable, effective, small business ERP) for Franchises, Industry Associations, and Dealer Networks like Hunter Douglas Dealers.
For an ERP (Enterprise Resource Plan) to really work it needs to be customizable while maintaining the power of integration. Because we are small business specialists and software engineering specialists, we can accomplish that for Franchises, Industry Associations, and Dealer Networks (as a group, 'Networks') that are looking to meet their special needs. This blog uses the Hunter Douglas dealer network as an example.
Why use a Business Management System (BMS/ERP)?
Here are some of the key reasons any business should want an integrated system:
- Data Availability and Accuracy: What is entered in one portion of a workflow is shared in all systems eliminating duplication of effort and assuring the accuracy of information. Since it's cloud-based technology it's available for everyone (permitted) from anywhere.
- Single Management System: All workflows are managed from the same dashboard. (Think Home Entertainment system with many components that are controlled by a single remote bringing them together for simplicity and excellence.)
- Business Analytics: With all your processes feeding data into the system it's easy to set KPI’s (Key Performance Indicators) and monitor them from a dashboard. No more guesswork, just real data in real-time.
- Cost Savings, Efficiency, and Scalability: All this leads to the ultimate benefit of making it easier to run and grow your business.
For Networks the benefits extend to include:
- Common interfaces for easy start-up and support
- Economies of scale that allow for greater technical enhancements at little or no costs.
- When appropriate data visibility and rollup
The History of the Hunter Douglas Xinator Software Management System
Hunter Douglas uses a network of thousands of independent dealers to sell and install their quality window treatments. They have introduced a robust SaaS-based ordering system to automate the complex ordering process. To facilitate the invoicing process and add benefits to their dealers they contracted with Intuit to integrate QuickBooks Online into their ordering software. Being experts in integrations, Intuit contracted Xceleran to conduct the integration and support Hunter Douglas dealers when they start up and use the integrated program.
In working with the dealers we determined the integration didn't go far enough and we introduced XinatorCentral and XinatorCEC/Servco to complete the automation strategy.
XinatorCentral for Hunter Douglas Dealers
Now Hunter Douglas dealers ordering process can start as an estimate/proposal in their XinatorCEC/Servco module's CRM, be sent to the field agent when doing tasks like measuring and installing, and even be used for collecting a credit card payment when a job is complete. This completes the automation of the proposal to payment process including of course ordering the appropriate window treatments.
This then marries with the other modules including other vendor products (non-Hunter Douglas) like flooring.
- QuickBooks Online (Required) - QBO is the primary database for our BMS. This way all customer information is standardized across all of the platforms.
- CRM (Customer Relationship Management) - This is where basic information on your customer is found including a history of bookings, invoices, and proposals.
- Booking Manager - The booking manager provides a way to customize your types of appointments, and assign costs, descriptions, and pictures for marketing purposes. It also provides the means to see current, pending, and completed jobs, add estimates and invoices, and more.
- Scheduling - Software that allows customers to request appointments and administrators to set appointments and assign service personnel. If desired, it also provides for the collection of deposits when bookings are made.
- Automated Customer Communications - Automatically sends customized communications in email and text messages for booking confirmations and reminders, follow-ups, and ratings/surveys.
- Field Service App - Android and iOS-based app for a service person to receive job information, create estimates in the field, collect billable items on the service site, and if desired collect payment via credit card reader, manual input, emailed/texted payment link, even Buy Now Pay Later.
- Intelligent Phone Answering - Automatically and instantaneously, provides details of callers including recent booking history, balances owed, notes from previous calls and text messages, and more.
- Payment Processing - Allows for collecting payment through five payment options (Credit/Debit Cards, ACH, Customer Payment Links, Point of Sale, and Buy Now Pay Later) and at multiple points during the customer journey, e.g., Balance Due or Deposit in advance of an appointment with a mouse click.
- Social Media Monitoring and Management - Automatically collect, track, and respond to social media rating posts on your accounts. Also, monitor competitors’ posts and other competitive information.
- QBO Time - Comprehensive time tracker including geo-fencing and GPS for assigning time to specific service requests.
- QBO Payroll - Automated payroll and tax processing.
- Recruiting Software - Proactive and automated recruiting management software.
If you are a part of a Network or manage one, Xceleran and our integration partners, Intuit and Global Payments Integrated might be a solution for you that is Affordable, Easy to Use, and very Effective.