President, Fire Sprinkler Systems, Inc.
Fire Sprinkler Systems, Inc.
(www.fireinc.net) is one of the largest residential fire sprinkler subcontractors in California, installing sprinkler systems for nearly every large residential tract builder in the state.
With 85 employees, Fire Sprinkler
has provided services to some of the largest builders on the West Coast for more than 15 years.
In the late 1990s, Fire Sprinkler
found itself having outgrown the business software provider they had worked with since opening their doors.
"The age of the software, along with difficulty in navigation, meant it was not as user friendly as we needed," said Harold Rodgers, Fire Sprinkler's president.
"We purchase and inventory on a just-in-time basis as if we were a manufacturing company manufacturing a product," Rodgers
"Through sales order processing we create a bill of materials that is required for a specific job.
This process automatically creates the purchase orders for the required materials, then sends the costs to job costing for percentage of completion calculations.
"Materials go to a job, but the actual billing is on the job cost side," Rodgers
"There is no impact on the customer record but it impacts inventory and goes through job cost."
The specifics of the residential building market also provided challenges for Fire Sprinkler
that WennSoft solutions helped overcome.
"Invoicing is extremely complicated.
We do not operate with standard terms like other businesses," Rodgers
"Every builder dictates their own terms and payment schedules.
One may say, 'You will bill $400 when you rough it in, but subtract $40 for this or bill an additional $8 for that.' Ultimately whatever is left is the retention billing."
To manage Fire Sprinkler's
billing process, the WennSoft Job Cost solution allows Fire Sprinkler's
staff to set all of the bill codes in advance.
"I can see everything listed from start to finish," Rodgers
"If I see 80% or a rough retention for a bill, I can quickly generate an invoice."
readily admits that it took some time before Fire Sprinkler
began using WennSoft
solutions to its full advantage, through no fault of WennSoft.
Once that was rectified internally, the positive impact was more pronounced.
"We failed to use the software the way it was intended by not breaking out the details on figures posted in each job," Rodgers
"This is not a very difficult system to operate," Rodgers
"Everything in the system is geared to job set up.
It that is done correctly, everything flows through the system as it should."
An easy-to-operate system is crucial to Rodgers
has 700-800 jobs open at a time and Percentage of Job Completion reports can run 44 printed pages.
has taken advantage of WennSoft maintenance and service agreements to ensure they receive total value and maximum return on their investment.
"The financial person who was here said he
investigated Microsoft Dynamics GP and they had nothing to track service," Rodgers