Melbourne based AFI Branding specialise in creating spectacular fabric based signage for events and exhibitions that are impossible to ignore. The work they produce is big, bold and, in our humble opinion, beautiful. They’re genuine leaders in their field and have worked with international brands such as Bose, as well as many Australian household names such as JB Hi-Fi.
Managing the production of such a complex and customisable product can be a real challenge. To support that AFI Branding created their own custom production system called Console. It’s the system that’s at the heart of what they do. Unfortunately that system didn’t handle the inventory management and costings side of the production process. That gap had initially been plugged with a combination of MYOB Accounting and good old fashioned Excel spreadsheets.
Although this worked it was far from reliable and created friction in the entire production process. Brendon Rowse, AFI Branding Managing Director, knew there had to be a smarter way of handling their inventory.
A key requirement for the project was to retain their existing production system and enhance it by adding inventory management capabilities. When we’re dealing with a system we know and understand that has clear documentation, then this is relatively straightforward. But, if it’s a custom piece of software we’re connecting to, then that can be a lot more challenging.
In these situations where working with custom API’s is required, DEAR Inventory is the system we turn to. Working closely with Meagan from the AFI Branding team, we were able to create a new process that seamlessly worked across the existing production platform and their inventory system.
Adding real time inventory capabilities to their Console system means they can now track every raw material and finished product with ease. No more jumping between different spreadsheets to try to get a handle on stock levels. And, the real-time element is huge for them. In the past, they had to wait until the ‘end of period’ to get accurate reporting which of course, in many cases was too late to make any corrective decisions.
AFI Branding still get to work with the familiar interface of their Console system. Now though, it’s enhanced with the DEAR Inventory platform which underpins every aspect of their inventory management and reporting. For Brendon and the team, that means winning back more time to grow the business. As a result they can continue their proud tradition of innovation and flying the flag for their entire industry.