Leading soft furnishings business says Mertex has been transformational
When Belfield Home implemented Reflex Data’s Mertex ERP software late in 2018, they saw immediate benefits. “It gave us traceability and visibility from the off,” says operations manager Craig North.
Belfield Home (formerly Design Studio) is the soft furnishings division of the Belfield Group, one of the UK's largest home furnishings businesses, and specialises in high quality made-to-order and readymade curtains, piece goods, cut lengths and cushions. Employing around 80 staff and supplying 700 customers in the UK and Southern Ireland, Belfield Home needed a software solution that matched its ambitions and helped the business to run more smoothly.
From its site in Ilkeston, Derbyshire, it recently launched a branded capsule collection in collaboration with designer and bestselling author Angel Strawbridge, star of Channel 4’s prime-time TV series Escape to the Chateau.
“We needed a system that would bring new efficiencies to the business and help us realise plans for growth,” says Craig who was in charge of overseeing the implementation.
“Everything is more visible to us now. Mertex informs us who has done what throughout the business as every transaction has an audit trail.
“It has transformed warehouse picking as we know exactly what stock we have and where it is located, and it brought us the additional benefit of reducing the amount of paper we use,” he says.
“Previously we had to print off a run of orders and take them to the warehouse to be manually processed. Now this is done electronically by Mertex, which also gives the warehouse staff an optimum picking route as well as indicating which is the most efficient roll of fabric for the order.
“This has reduced short ends as well as picking by batch to help with colour continuity.”
Customer experience is paramount and, according to Craig, sales order processing has been hugely improved as Mertex lets staff know the availability of stock at the point of order as well as allowing them to email customers an order confirmation.
Belfield Home also uses Reflex Analytics which provides up-to-date business information in an easy to view format. “It is fantastic from the point of view of the layout and information it provides us with,” says Craig. “We can quickly and easily see what is happening across the business.”
Craig adds that as Mertex has become more embedded into the business, the 45 plus staff who use it have started to become more inquisitive about what it can achieve for them.