Case Koskisen

Improving operational efficiency in wood industry


Wood industry company Koskisen Oy wanted to improve operational efficiency by harmonizing its information systems. Now the financial administration information system and ERP system are based on Digia’s Enterprise -technology.

milla-teimme.pngWhat we used

The provider must have expertise in the sector, while also being sufficiently large yet flexible.

Markku Lähteenmäki, Deputy managing director, Koskisen Oy

 

Improving operational efficiency in wood industry

Financial administration information system and ERP system based on Digia Enterprise -technology improved Koskisen Oy’s operational efficiency.

Since production varies a great deal from one sub-field of mechanical wood-processing to the next, covering everything with a single ERP system poses certain challenges. For instance, the production of Herrala houses comprises project deliveries in which the most important factor is offer calculation. Plywood and chipboard, on the other hand, are manufactured in a very process-oriented manner.

When Koskisen Oy started harmonizing its financial administration and ERP information systems in 2001, the goal was to include as much of the organization under the same information systems as possible. This proved successful in regards to financial administration, but it was ultimately decided that only plywood and chipboard production would be covered by the ERP system. Together, these account for around half of the company’s turnover.

The goal of the extensive system redesign was to enhance cost-efficiency. One concrete intermediate goal was the efficient integration of sales with production.

System must adapt to the end user's needs

Customer-orientation is an important quality where Koskisen Group sales and production are concerned. Hence, the ERP system also had to be adaptable to customer-oriented deliveries. Mechanical wood-industry products have around 16 distinct properties. The production process entails many exceptions to the rules, and various measurement units and combinations thereof are applied to a single product. In addition, several discounts and additions are used, both order- and order-row-specifically.

”A needs analysis had to be performed, carefully determining system goals, before the selection process. Enough experts, from different fields, had to be part of the project team performing the selection”, stresses Markku Lähteenmäki, deputy managing director at Koskisen Oy.

“The provider, on the other hand, had to have expertise in the sector, while also being sufficiently large yet flexible.”

After an exhaustive selection process, Koskisen Oy chose Digia to be the provider. The financial administration information system is based on the Digia Enterprise technology. Also the ERP system is based on Digia’s Enterprise, but more programming tailored to the customer’s needs was carried out for the latter system.

Significant improvement in the production efficiency

The financial administration system covering all of the business group’s operations was the first element to be implemented in the course of the system modernization. About a year after this, the production management system for the chipboard sector was implemented, followed by the plywood system, which required the most configuration work.

Koskinen’s bespoke components are largely related to the various work phases in plywood and chipboard production. However, order processing in the two is similar. Order processing has become markedly more efficient thanks to the new system: despite the growing number of orders, the processing is now handled by 10 to 15 per cent fewer staff.

The orders placed by the company’s sales representatives are shown in real time at the plant. Work queue management is easy, and each employee can view the day’s work list from his or her workstation in the morning, without having to wait for the supervisor’s visit. Production turnaround times have been reduced, while quality has increased.

The drop of about a fifth in the need for intermediate storage nicely illustrates that material management has become more efficient. The predictability of material management has improved greatly since purchase information and maintenance requirements have become available in the real time in the system. Transport planning too has become easier.

Purchase invoice processing has been integrated into the financial administration system. The fact that, despite an over 50% increase in group turnover, there has been no need to increase the number of staff in financial administration indicates that financial administration has become significantly more efficient.

Understanding the defining characteristics of the sector is vitally important where information system projects and product development are concerned. Over 10 years old customer relationship with Koskisen Oy has brought Digia deep knowledge and understanding of the needs of the customer. These needs are taken into consideration also when developing the standard software.