OMC is a manufacturing company focused on automating the extreme labor required to pick fruits and nuts by hand. As deployments and operations for its patented Shakermaker machines expanded, OMC quickly discovered that it didn’t have the field service resources required to keep its customers up and running during the most critical time of the year: harvest season.
Too dependent on manual processes
OMC determined that its field service operations were heavily dependent on inefficient manual processes, which resulted in sub-optimal field service productivity. For example, during rotating shifts from early mornings to late nights, OMC’s field service technicians would fill out paperwork to document service projects and request additional parts. However, the paperwork would typically take up to three days to process, which was often too late to restock the field service technicians’ trucks before the next appointment.
A non-disruptive automated solution
To overcome these challenges, OMC sought to streamline its field service operations via automated processes. OMC needed a technology solution that wouldn’t hinder its field service technicians’ existing responsibilities, so it was imperative that the solution was user-friendly, intuitive and easy to implement. The company began searching for a solution that would ensure that OMC’s field service technicians could continue to deliver the same level of stellar service OMC’s customers had come to expect.
OMC conducted a careful evaluation of competitive offerings and was initially drawn to SAP for its willingness to work with a growing but relatively small company. After researching SAP’s platform further, OMC was impressed by SAP’s ability to track labor, manage OMC’s inventories on its trucks, and eliminate OMC’s excessive manual paperwork. Furthermore, OMC found significant value in the customization capabilities of SAP’s platform, as well as its ability to address OMC’s needs that are highly specific to the agricultural industry. OMC’s ERP systems use unique terminology, to which SAP can translate generic field service descriptions for various assets.
Automation leads to faster customer service
Since selecting SAP field service management to automate and accelerate its field service operations and boost its field service technicians’ productivity, OMC has realized a wealth of benefits. SAP’s platform provides OMC with a manufacturing and enterprise resourcing planning (MRP/ ERP) solution to make time-intensive paperwork obsolete, fully incorporating existing field service processes into mobile phone and tablet devices. With the mobile platform, OMC’s technicians input project updates and part requests in real-time, resulting in accelerating the invoicing process from five days to zero (instantaneously). In addition, OMC can now dispatch technicians in just five minutes, rather than the full business day that was previously required.
These features not only streamline inventory management for OMC’s in-office service managers, enabling them to focus on customer service within the shop, but also provide OMC’s upper management with valuable insights into the number of service calls fulfilled, most profitable customer integrations, and more. Most importantly, the streamlined operations enable OMC to service its customers faster than ever before.
Before SAP, OMC’s field service operations revolved heavily around paperwork – and the rate at which we were able to process it. Between manually inputting paperwork and waiting for requests for restocked parts, our field service operations ended up being an all-hands-ondeck effort. With SAP, we are able to automate and streamline our field service processes, optimizing our in-field technicians’ workdays and freeing up in-office service managers to focus on driving business goals. We are now much better equipped to ensure the thousands of deployed OMC machines are in prime condition to produce bountiful harvest seasons for our customers.Brian Kaufman, Supply Chain Manager, Orchard Machinery Corporation
About Orchard Machinery Corporation
Orchard Machinery Corporation (OMC) is the world leader in orchard harvesting equipment. OMC was formed in 1961, producing hydraulic tree shakers to enable a more efficient prune harvest. Today, OMC offers a full line of patented orchard harvesting solutions, from tree shakers to material handling systems to transportation products along with offering unparalleled service and support in the industry. OMC is headquartered in Yuba City, California, and has shipped more than 5,000 machines worldwide to Australia, South America, and across the United States.