The great thing about technology is its ability to simplify our lives. While Young’s Plant Farms was already using two types of software — one for invoicing and order entries and the other for financials — the company decided to make an upgrade and simplify things even more by implementing software that combined the two.
The Alabama-based company has been using a system called MAS 500 for four years. Aside from being able to use it for accounts payable, accounts receivable, invoicing and order entries, its flexibility has allowed Young’s Plant Farms to customize it to fit its needs.
“We needed a more stable platform and a software that allowed us to customize whatever we needed,” General Manager Bryan Young says. “With MAS 500, we’re able to get exactly what we wanted out of the system.”
This included integrating its own software with the MAS 500 system. About three years ago, Young’s Plant Farm developed its own software called the Scan By Cart in response to a change with Wal-Mart.
“Anything we want to do, we can do it, whether it’s the scanning thing we added or making small tweaks here and there all the time,” Young says. “It does cost, but it’s good to know that if we want to be able to do it, we can do it on that software package.”
The MAS 500 has also allowed the employees to access the same data and be on the same page.
“Everyone can go into the software and see the same information, whereas in the past … nobody was linked together,” Young says, adding that this has also helped with accuracy, because the employees are no longer entering information manually into a program like Excel.
There were several challenges with the new software. The first was making sure that the software could complement the company’s needs. Young says they had someone who understood the software and someone who understood the business work together to maximize the software’s effectiveness. The second issue was simply getting everybody used to a new system, but that problem resolved itself over time.
The important thing to remember with software is that it’s a great tool, but it’s not perfect, Young says.
“There are errors,” he explains. “It’s a tool that can make your job and a lot of things quicker. But it doesn’t do it magically. The effort you put in is what you’re going to get out of it.”
Want to know more? Young’s Plant Farm, (800) 304-8609; youngsplantfarm.com.
Scan By Cart Photo courtesy of Young’s Plant Farm