With more than 40 years of history in Finland, Laattapiste is a family-owned company specialising in bathrooms. The company’s wide range has everything for bathrooms: products for bathroom construction and floor surfaces, ceramic tiles and products for professionals. The customer base consists of both consumers and companies specialising in public, new and renovation construction.
The basis of Laattapiste’s digitalisation is strongly based on the Digia Envision ERP solution, which the company has had in use since 2011, and which has been developed together with Laattapiste to meet the company’s evolving needs. In December 2021, Laattapiste switched to the latest Digia Envision ERP version with a version change project and gained access to many new features that make it easier to use. In addition, the technological platform of the product update enables more multichannel development opportunities in future development.
What we did
- an enterprise resource planning system that helps ensure that the digital path from bathroom design to delivery and all the way to quality control is unbroken
What we used
A solution that covers the whole process
Digia Envision ERP covers the entire process range at Laattapiste from purchase to delivery, invoicing and accounting. The system helps ensure that the digital path from bathroom design to delivery and all the way to quality control is unbroken. “To some extent, the ERP system has an impact on the everyday life of the entire organisation. Especially in logistics, purchasing, customer service, financial administration and order processing, the system is in heavy use”, says Logistics Director Antti Tarkkala at Laattapiste.
ERP acts as a master system for data, from which connections have been built through interfaces to several other systems: for example, for in-store sales, Laattapiste uses a third-party system that the ERP system connects to through interfaces. These external systems enrich the basic functionalities of Digia Envision ERP, and through integrations, information flows between the systems in real time. This enables an intact order–supply chain, which is visible to the customer as the speed of delivery. The principle of a single master also ensures that information is not updated in more than one place at the same time. This way of thinking has been part of Laattapiste’s data culture for a long time, and without it, the operation of the complex system would not be possible.
The system has also enabled advanced automation by automating routine tasks in processes such as inventory, invoicing and purchase. “All processes that do not produce added value have been automated, and now we are focusing on refining the automation chains. Already now the situation is that when the customer presses the button, dozens of steps automatically take place in the background, which brings clear time savings when it takes a few seconds instead of minutes for steps of the process to complete. This, in turn, frees up the working hours of our staff for customer service and other important work done by humans”, says Vice President Petteri Haru from Laattapiste.
Development of the ERP system for Laattapiste needs
Laattapiste has been an active player in the development of Digia Envision ERP. “Our philosophy is that the ERP system must adapt to our needs. The customer and the customer relationship are the most important source of information for us, and development needs to be done with this in mind. It is very important for us that product development can be done with Digia on this premise”, Haru comments. In the development work, Laattapiste has also been able to present features necessary for its industry, which are also versatile for others.
For example, internal logistics has been a broad entity whose functionalities in the business system have been developed jointly. Laattapiste operates in retail, wholesale and project trade, and this has presented its own challenges for the business system. “We have been the resilient guerrilla who completed the process of tracking batches, parcels and dates alike in inventory management. This supports our business and creates a significant competitive advantage for us, and Digia Envision ERP has grown in cooperation with these needs”, Tarkkala sums up.
The functionalities of batch tracking are also critical in the day-to-day business, when it comes to the largest tile storage facility in Europe. The system monitors and controls the arrival and departure of batches in the correct order. This can be used to ensure that the customer receives tiles from one batch in a single order and that the end result is not multi-coloured walls. “We use up one batch and then we move on to the next one. This way we can ensure that the customer always receives items from the same batch and has their wishes fulfilled”, Haru says. The reliable system also assists Laattapiste’s staff: the warehouse staff can rely on the batches being correct, and a dynamic warehouse location system keeps the system up-to-date with the available materials.
The system has also been tailored specifically to Laattapiste’s needs: for example, customisations have been made for the processing of prepayments to make payment transactions work together with the ERP system in consumer trade. Consumer bathroom renovations are typically projects where the desired products can change along the way or the required quantities of goods are not precisely known, and the business system does not adapt to these situations per se. Components and interfaces built for these needs are also used in the online store.
Agile service with the customer at the centre
Laattapiste strives to serve its customers agilely, and the systems used must also support this goal. The e-commerce process is one good example of how Laattapiste serves the customer’s path agilely and quickly: when ordering online, the customer can choose a self-service pick-up from a Vantaa or Turku office, and the product can be quickly picked up thanks to an automated process. The entire process, with the exception of the warehouse worker’s collection work, is digital, and at its fastest, the customer has received a notification in ten minutes after ordering, indicating the pick-up point of the product.
“We can serve our customers extremely quickly, and this is the direction we need to go in Finland. The functional quality of the system is also state of the art, and the system checks that the product is correct and from the correct batch. Errors are not passed on to the customer, but the system removes them”, says Haru, continuing, “For the customer, the whole palette must feel easy and simple regardless of the channel – they can start in the store and continue online, and the experience must be seamless. The ERP must support this journey.”
Laattapiste is continuously developing its operations, aiming for a greater market share both in its current field of operation and through the expanding product portfolio. “We do our customers’ bidding and are constantly considering their needs and how we can better serve them. The reliability of deliveries even in very challenging times is a prerequisite for operations”, Haru says. Digia Envision ERP is the core of the digital business on which to build new growth as user interfaces are rendered more accessible and new features are introduced.