Redditch-based Lifestyle Appliances Ltd, one of the UK’s largest independent suppliers of outdoor leisure products, has seen a surge in online sales during the recent lockdown period.
The award-winning company was formed in 2001 and operates in the retail, leisure and hospitality, and industrial sectors. In the past quarter, Lifestyle Appliances’ business has experienced growing online demand as more of us stay at home and many of its retail customers started buying online rather than visiting the showroom.
Helping the retailer adapt successfully to the increase in online (which some other major retail brands struggled to do successfully, leaving online shoppers frustrated), has been Kidderminster-based OGL Computer. The company already used a range of Managed IT services from OGL, including IT Support, Office 365, Cloud Recovery and Proactive Administration, to manage business processes. But it was OGL Computer’s ERP software that helped Lifestyle Appliances manage the online spike in sales.
OGL’s integrated CRM, accounts and purchasing ERP (enterprise resource planning) solution combines data from all sales channels into one platform. By bringing together information from many different systems, Lifestyle Appliances was able to process orders more efficiently.
Frank Spencer, Lifestyle Appliances Director, said: “OGL Software really came to the fore as it enabled us to track stock movements quickly and keep our customers up to speed with the daily fluctuations in stock availability, so we could pass this accurate information on to our customer base.”
Frank explains: “A small number of staff used mobile VPN set ups to work from home and this enabled them to access the OGL platform real-time from a remote location to process sales orders and purchase orders. This kept the flow of orders to be dispatched going into the warehouse so that delivery time promises for our internet customer base were maintained.
“Our view on remote working has totally changed. We feel that as we transit out of the pandemic and return to what you might call the “new normal”, practices implemented during the pandemic and lockdown will be maintained as standard working practice as a result of them being recognised as a far more efficient way of conducting our business.”
Lifestyle Appliances has also recently invested in technology from OGL Computer’s Cyber Security division, CyberGuard Technologies.
Nick Davies, Head of Software Development at OGL Computer, added: “With our range of IT support services and security solutions in place around our ERP software, Lifestyle Appliances is better able to manage expectations of customers, partners and staff.”