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Founded in 1966, EL2D has historically specialised in construction and electrical installation. When it was taken over by its current manager Nicolas Oudot in 2007, it had a turnover of one million euros and 10 employees. Today, the company employs 160 collaborators and has a turnover of 16 million euros. This growth was mainly driven by the reorientation of its strategy, which is now firmly based on services.
« Whereas EL2D’s entire activity used to be focused on works, today it only represents 30% of our turnover, the remainder being the result of our maintenance and repair services on electrical systems or other air conditioning systems,” explains Nicolas Oudot, EL2D’s CEO. To a lesser extent, we are also continuing our plumbing, air conditioning installation and finishing work (partitions, ceilings, floors, and painting)».
Half of EL2D’s maintenance services is provided in public procurement and half in the private sector. “As much as our activity with public players is governed by framework agreements, with our 300 or so private sector clients, we have recurring but volatile “over-the-counter” agreements,” continues Nicolas Oudot. The challenge we face is to hold onto them, which encourages us to constantly strengthen our added value and our customer relations.” With this in mind, and to better monitor its worksites, the company has equipped itself with the Oxalys purchasing management solution.
We were seeking a complete desktop and mobile solution that could adapt to our changing processes, purchasing volumes, strategy, and pace of deployment
Our approach consisted of boosting the traceability of purchases, site by site, and automating the analytical charges. We also wanted to make our foremen more autonomous in taking orders and more efficient and responsive on a daily basis
The challenges: trace all purchasing processes and gain in efficiency
When the company was taken over in 2007, the business, which was mainly focused on construction, required numerous orders from multiple suppliers. At that time, foremen made their purchases solely by telephone. Validation processes could be lengthy, and the monitoring of orders was very limited. The crisis of 2008/2009 then weakened the company, which needed to find a new lease of life. It was then that it started to develop its service business. A development that required EL2D to be more reactive to avoid making customers wait, but also to improve their satisfaction and thus ensure their loyalty.
Faced with these challenges, EL2D first of all intended to digitise its purchasing processes. The chosen purchasing management system should therefore allow :
- Automatic validation of purchases
- Traceability of orders
- The implementation of a centralised supplier repository
- Remote control for mobile technicians
«Our purchasing processes were evolving at the same pace as our business”, explains Nicolas Oudot. We were therefore seeking a complete desktop and mobile solution that could adapt to these changes, both in terms of purchase volume, strategy, and pace of deployment. These were constraints that Oxalys, which we got to know through co-option, met perfectly.»
The project: implementing the Oxalys solution step by step
The project was launched in 2011, once the choice for the Oxalys Procure-to-Pay solution had been confirmed. The first project consisted of setting up purchase order workflows with commitment thresholds for foremen.
The approach consisted of reinforcing the traceability of purchases, site by site, and automating analytical allocations,” explains Nicolas Oudot. We also wanted to use this tool to make our foremen more autonomous in taking orders and more efficient and responsive on a daily basis. A measure which became increasingly necessary as our business became more service oriented.
To make order taking more fluid and to enhance the autonomy of its foremen in their order taking, EL2D then relied on the management of “supplier catalogues” of the Oxalys Procure-to-Pay solution in 2012. This feature has enabled the implementation of a supplier repository in line with its purchasing policy. We have also been able to create a virtual shelving tool in which we highlight the listings we select,” continues Nicolas Oudot. This tool, combined with our workflow system, allows our buyers to place their orders without us having to check or validate them afterwards. By facilitating the monitoring and validation of their purchase requests as well as access to information that is useful when it comes to validating or refusing a purchase, Oxalys helps to improve monitoring of the supply chain”.
«A great deal of work has been done to simplify screens and functionalities, but also to adapt content, in particular supplier catalogues. This is one of the most important aspects of the project, to facilitate appropriation by users.»
Finally, to improve the efficiency of its technicians and site supervisors in the field, in 2016, EL2D decided to digitalise its entire supply chain and to equip them with the Oxalys Mobile Procurement solution.
“Technicians or site managers used to have to go to our suppliers’ counters or to our storage warehouse to buy and collect goods,” adds Nicolas Oudot. They are now equipped with tablets and the Oxalys Mobile Procurement application from which they can place their orders directly from their worksite without waiting for the request to make its way through headquarters. “
“Beyond its mobile dimension, this application is also sufficiently comprehensive and precise to allow our users to define their needs and for logisticians to be able to identify and extract what they need from stock. We have also recruited delivery people to deliver their orders directly to their workplaces.”
At the same time, EL2D also equipped itself with the Oxalys stock management system to strengthen its control over listing and replenishment.
The next step for the company will be to deploy the logistics location module. “We will then have digitised our entire supply chain, from procurement to stock management and logistics locations.”
«Technicians or foremen are now equipped with tablets and the Oxalys Mobile Procurement application from which they can place their orders directly from their worksite without waiting for the request to make its way through headquarters. »
Oxalys has enabled us to reorganise our supply chain and to gain one and a half days per week per technician, which represents a financial gain of 150,000 euros per year
The benefits: a professional tool for non-buyer users.
EL2D’s collaborators currently include project managers, foremen and technicians, but no buyers. The Oxalys purchasing management solution, and in particular the solutions dedicated to mobile collaborators, is particularly easy to use and therefore suitable for non-professional buyers,” says Nicolas Oudot. In addition to its power and host of features, this solution is both of high quality and resolutely user oriented.
With Oxalys, EL2D has digitised its entire supply chain and thus saves precious time in its order management and site supply processes.
«Ultimately, our foremen and technicians can concentrate more on their core business: service.
The purchasing process no longer interferes with the construction process. We have also gained in responsiveness to our customers and thus increase their satisfaction.»