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Success Story - Country Club Enterprises
 
Country Club Enterprises

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Country Club Enterprises is one of the largest Club Car distributors in the U.S. serving Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and eastern Massachusetts. The firm sells, leases and services thousands of golf cars to golf clubs each year. These clubs buy or lease the golf cars in fleets ranging from less than 20 to those with fleets of 150+. CCE also provides maintenance and repair services for the cars it sells or leases.

Two problems arose from the old system. One, the inability to accurately track inventory in real-time caused confusion about the true physical location of some cars. Two, there was often a time lag between delivery and invoicing because the sales side had to do their work by hand.

Country Club Enterprises chose PRONTO Software's enterprise management solution to help them manage the administrative tasks involved in the sale, leasing, customization, distribution, maintenance and repair of golf carts. PRONTO Software provides a fully integrated management system that links all aspects of the business from accounting to delivery.

"PRONTO software has tied all our processes together from sales through production to accounting for the first time since we acquired CCE two years ago," explains Russ Spencer, CFO. It also meant that in the first half of this year, CCE had significantly accelerated its billings compared to the same period in 2001.

This is a very seasonal business with their busiest time being between January and April, as the clubs get ready for the golf season along the upper East Coast.

"We now have linked all the steps from inventory control to sales and invoicing," Spencer continues. "These are the two most important benefits to us." The capabilities of PRONTO allowed the firm to eliminate the redundancies that occurred under the old system, which also helped to eliminate errors or conflicting data.

When CCE was purchased two years ago, the new management team inherited a legacy DOS-based system that left much of the paper trail to be literally hand-done or was captured in other software such as Excel. For example, inventory was tracked in Excel that wasn't linked to the DOS system. The Excel inventory had to be reconciled with accounting's figures because there was no way to create a clean cut-off for cars in transit from one location to another.

 

"To be able to track serialized inventories, we have created a purchase order for the trade-in cars coming back to us, so our books in essence show that we are buying the cars and we credit that sale back to customer when we invoice them for the new fleet being shipped in exchange," he says.

Today, they not only know what they have, but where it is located at any given point in time. "Our most significant inventory issue now is reconciling the inventory that was being tracked in Excel when we converted to the new system. Eventually, we'll get it all captured in the new system," Spencer adds.


"Using our old system, which involved a lot of paperwork, meant there could be a lag from the time of the sale until we actually mailed the invoice," says Spencer. "Now we invoice on delivery. It also means that CCE's aging reports are the useful management tool they are meant to be.

"We are probably doing some things with the software that we will do differently in the future," Spencer explains, "because we didn't fully understand the software capabilities before making some implementation decisions.

"If we had to do it again, we would have extended the implementation to allow time for more thorough training and to make better decisions," Spencer advises. "It was our decision to push an aggressive installation, as we wanted to go-live by Jan. 1. We did the pre-install work in October, then began system set-up in November and December. That was a very short period of time to make such as dramatic change in how we need to do business.

 
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"That resulted in making some adjustments along the way. Our PRONTO consultant was excellent at working through changes and solutions with us. As with any new software, we ran into a few 'bugs,' which we chose to call 'unanticipated software enhancements.' He was terrific in finding and resolving those issues. There were no deal stoppers. The beauty is that nothing is set in stone, so we can modify our system configuration in the future. The software is incredibly flexible.

"We need fast, accurate information in every aspect of our business, particularly in our service department since golf carts are a significant revenue source for our customers," he concludes. "When they need service, we need to be there."

Country Club Enterprises grew dramatically in 2001 and has a staff of 30 between in three states. Spencer says they were able to handle the growth without adding administrative staff, in part, because of the efficiencies brought about by PRONTO software.

"We are positioned now for continued growth," Spencer says, "PRONTO gives us the scalability we need to reach that goal."
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