6 Can’t-Miss Commerce Sessions at NetSuite SuiteWorld19

There’s no better place to learn how your business can get the most out of its NetSuite ecommerce solution than SuiteWorld19. Whether you’re still evaluating the solution or a power user, there will be insightful content for anyone hoping to learn more about commerce.

SuiteWorld19 is right around the corner, taking place from April 1-4 at The Sands Expo and Convention Center in Las Vegas. With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at six of the most intriguing commerce sessions:

1. How to Take Your B2B Commerce Experience to the Next Level (Tuesday, April 2, 11 am-12 pm, Venetian Ballroom A)

It’s no longer enough to simply have B2B ecommerce website. Your online store must offer buyers a seamless experience as competition grows and more buyers move online every day. This session features a panel of three companies — Regina Andrew Design, POS Supply Solutions and MES Fire — who have created outstanding online experiences for B2B customers. Leaders from each company will share tips and strategies to succeed online and offer their thoughts on prominent trends and challenges, including the rapid rise of Amazon Business.

2. Road to Success: Strategies to Achieving Ecommerce Success at Scale (Wednesday, April 3, 11 am-12 pm, Venetian Ballroom A)

Like many other well-known major retailers, Williams-Sonoma had to revamp its business to excel as a multi-channel retailer. Joey Davis, part of the global ecommerce development team at Williams-Sonoma, will detail the product innovation, digital leadership and operational improvement initiatives the iconic retailer took on to build and scale its online business. In addition, Davis will touch on how the multi-billion-dollar company has leveraged the SuiteCommerce Advanced solution and new extensions framework to clear the hurdles of multi-channel commerce.

Curious about NetSuite? A Discover Pass gets you access to breakout sessions designed for attendees considering NetSuite. 

3. Discover a Better Way to Do Ecommerce (Thursday, April 4, 11:30 am-12:30 pm, Murano 3304)

Launching an online store on NetSuite’s unified platform has never been faster than it is today with SuiteSuccess for SuiteCommerce. Find out how this implementation methodology gets a robust ecommerce site live in 30 days and how the pre-built B2B and B2C themes, site management tools and extensions that come with it will help your business thrive online. Experts will walk you through the resources on both the customer and NetSuite side required for a successful SuiteSuccess implementation. This session will also touch on the benefits of running your business on a single platform.

4. NetSuite Sanity for Omnichannel Madness (Tuesday, April 2, 4:45-5:45 pm, Venetian Ballroom A)

“Omnichannel retail” has been the industry buzzword for years now, yet many businesses still struggle to support multiple channels and allow customers to move seamlessly between them. Some are afraid to embrace omnichannel because of the technology or integrations required. But Mack’s Prairie Wings is a midsize retailer that’s found a way to drive results across a large retail store, website and mail-order catalog. Eric Chin, COO of the waterfowl hunting outfitter, will describe how NetSuite’s unified platform has been crucial to its omnichannel success by keeping all data and transactions in one place.

Check out the session catalog to view the entire lineup of breakout sessions at SuiteWorld19. 

5. React in Real Time: The Importance of Data in Giving Customers What They Want (Thursday, April 4, 10-11 am, Venetian Ballroom A)

The data customers generate every time they interact with you is only valuable if you know how to interpret it, then use it to improve their online experience. Discover which data will help you understand customer behavior and how that information can help you anticipate and cater to their needs to increase revenue. Business’ ability to react to data in real-time will only become more critical to their ecommerce success in the years to come, and it can even provide a competitive advantage.

6. Enhance & Extend: How to Get a Cutting-Edge Site with Commerce Extensions(Tuesday, April 2, 4:45-5:45 pm, San Polo 3501B)

Our ecommerce solutions are more flexible and easier to customize than ever before with NetSuite commerce extensions. These extensions help keep your ecommerce site up-to-date and empower non-technical users to add functionality that will improve the customer experience. Product experts will break down third-party extensions and frameworks, the SuiteApp.com marketplace and preview what’s coming next for SuiteCommerce and SuiteCommerce Advanced users. And Williams-Sonoma will share insights from its own experience utilizing NetSuite extensions.

If you’re looking for more technical sessions designed for SuiteCommerce developers, you can find recommendations here

Meet Us at the Expo Hall

When you have some free time, make sure you swing by the Commerce Connect & Grow area on the expo floor. It’s an unmatched opportunity to interact with other members of the NetSuite commerce community and benefit from hands-on learning, featuring:

  • Ask An Expert: Come in for a quick chat or schedule a one-on-one with a product expert to solve your commerce challenges on topics like marketing and merchandising, commerce for developers, in-store and order experience, performance, and more.
  • Grow Product Innovation: Take part in usability research with UX designers to influence the future of the commerce user experience.

Finally, a reminder that the discounted group rate of $1,295 (for four-plus attendees) and standard rate of $1,695 both expire at 11:59 p.m. PST on March 15. So save some money and register today!

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Compac Industries: A Family-Owned Manufacturer and Distributor Driven by Family Values

A family-owned business founded by Jamaican immigrant Frederick Hart in 1980, Compac Industries is an admirable example of what most would consider the American Dream. The Georgia-based business is a manufacturer and distributor of products designed to make life simpler, ranging from kitchen gadgets, to oral care, to baby accessories. Compac Industries was built on an important set of shared values focused on serving others. Now run by Frederick’s son Dean-Paul, Compac Industries continues to embrace its roots and identity as a tight-knit, family-run company committed to improving the lives of others. The company still employs Dean-Paul’s mother and father as well as other extended family members, but considers all employees to be members of the Hart family.

Responding to Industry and Consumer Trends

Over its 40 years in operation, Compac Industries has navigated many significant changes across technology and consumer behavior that ultimately shaped the way the company went to market. By closely following and responding to these changes, Compac continues to grow.

Historically concentrated mostly on the B2B space, Compac Industries has traditionally relied on its partnerships with retailers to reach end customers. B2C was less of a focus, driven primarily by call-in customer orders from product catalogs. Yet, as technology advancements drove the growth of the ecommerce sector, both Compac’s consumer and competitive landscapes were revolutionized. Exposed to the shopping and buying experience of companies like Amazon, consumers began to expect similar online shopping experiences elsewhere. As a manufacturer and distributor of solution products, Compac understood the importance of keeping pace with consumer expectations. Compac chose to partner with online retail giants like Amazon and Wal-Mart to put their products in front of online consumers.

Additionally, Compac began to recognize that consumers were beginning to identify and engage directly with brands. That led the company to rethink both its product delivery and brand strategy, seeking to create a stronger connection between its customers and its brands. Between 2015 and 2016, Compac rebranded all of its products, putting them into specific segments under corresponding brands. Compac now maintains five distinct brands of products, allowing the customer to more closely engage with a specific brand, driving customer loyalty and like-product purchases.

Choosing the Right Technology Partner

As the business continued to evolve, Compac recognized the limitations of its antiquated ERP system and its manual processes often done in Excel. To propel its brand strategy and future growth, Compac knew it needed the right technology partner to manage the entirety of the business, from customers, to inventory to financials. Compac ultimately made the decision to switch from its Sage ERP platform to NetSuite in 2017. Compac is utilizing the full business management suite, managing financials and accounting, inventory, warehouse, customers and email marketing on the NetSuite platform. During a recent webinar, Dean-Paul proudly shared that, after installing NetSuite, the company’s inventory was fully reported and work orders were automatically generating for the first time in 20 years. He values the out-of-the box dashboards the system provides, allowing him to keep tabs on all major departments while empowering his employees to focus on their value.

Ensuring Multi-Generational Family Business Success

Compac has successfully navigated 40 years of operation through two generations of Hart leadership. Building on the foundation of strong family values established by his father, Dean-Paul has helped guide Compac Industries through changing customer and competitive landscapes. As he looks to the future, he knows he needs to use what he learned about his own succession into company leadership to plan for the future leadership of Compac. To learn more about Compac Industries’ approach to succession planning, download the recording of NetSuite’s “The Family Business: Succession Planning” webinar here.

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Seed to Series C: A Quick Guide to Business Funding in Europe

Based on the amount of funding raised by VC firms and the number of investments made in 2018, the European VC landscape is as healthy as it’s been since the 2007 financial crisis. By October, investors had poured an eyewatering €14.8bn into European-focused funds and deployed capital across 2,643 investments. For context, no European-focused fundraising attracted more than €10bn in one year between 2008-2015 (Pitchbook, 2018).

The question that every growing business looking for funding should be asking is ‘how do we ensure it’s our business that gets the backing?’. Whilst the investment firms are competing to get in quickly, companies looking for investment must also stand out from the crowd and really understand what VC investors are looking for.

Seed Funding

The key purpose of Seed funding is to develop a product and audience. Typically, Seed funding allows entrepreneurs to create and launch an early version of their product and test out their assumptions, the market and user base. Depending on the amount, it should also allow them to expand the team beyond the initial founding members.

When pitching, the focus is undoubtedly on the product idea, vision for the company and perhaps most importantly, the enthusiasm, drive, expertise and talent behind it. When investing this early VCs are backing people.

Top Tip #1: Don’t go to your preferred VC first 

You may be passionate about your business and think that your VC of choice couldn’t possibly disagree, but it may take a while to hone and perfect a pitch. You don’t want to be warming up in front of your preferred investor. Test your pitch on others and if it’s not hitting the right tone, change it. Often the best founders – or those perceived to be the best by VCs – are those who can articulate their message and vision the clearest.

Series A & B

At this stage, with the core product offering and market figured out, entrepreneurs are likely acquiring new customers, but the business model may not be clear or monetisable at scale. Series A funding helps—this also includes optimising the product and user base, so a business is ready to successfully enter new markets and transact with customers.

Top Tip #2: Talent, talent, talent 

Fundraising is never easy, it’s painful, and you’ll likely encounter obstacles all along the way. However, once you’re off the ground, your priorities will shift. You’ll likely spend more time hiring the right people to take the business to the next level then fundraising, and attracting, retaining and motivating key talent is crucial in this super competitive marketplace.

Series C Onwards

Companies with established products and services take their business to the next level by broadening their market reach. While you know where your profits are coming from, rapid customer growth may be a trade off. Key drivers for growth are achieved through honing and perfecting customer experience, expanding internationally, acquiring other companies, rapidly expanding sales/marketing functions and hiring key executive talent.

At this stage, operational complexity increases as a business transacts in new currencies and languages, or deals with new reporting and compliance regulations after acquiring a competitor.

Top Tip #3: Be picky and demanding 

In an environment of superabundant capital, capital firms should be adding more value to your business beyond just providing cash. Alongside your investors, you should be learning together what the key challenges and priorities are and setting clear milestones. They should help you recruit top talent given their expanded networks, deliver expert networking and peer learning opportunities, help prepare for future funding rounds, and leverage a network of vendors, advisors and contacts who are trusted and can help get things done. Most importantly, they should be offering a different perspective, as some distance from daily operations can be a virtue.

Now is a better time than ever for emerging businesses to apply for the funding they need to accelerate their growth. The last few years have seen record-breaking amounts of money invested in European businesses, but be warned – that doesn’t mean gaining investment is easy – VC’s know what they’re looking for, and they’re aware of the signs of a good deal. Being prepared is essential.

Read the full guide Seed to Series C: The Essential Guide to Business Funding, for an in depth look at each funding round, more top tips and case studies.

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SuiteWorld19 to Offer Dedicated Track to Promote Women in Leadership

The results are in: women bring growth and positive change to organizations across all industries and sizes. For many companies and their leaders, this isn’t groundbreaking news. For others, however, it challenges corporate cultures, hiring practices and even hidden bias within entire industries.

Increasing rates of female education and labor force participation leave many of us questioning why women held less than a quarter of senior roles globally in 2018. Why are women often overlooked or held back? Is it a lack of the appropriate network? Lower access to funding? Less confidence in negotiation or self-promotion? Or simply a gender bias that is too deeply rooted to combat?

Many women and men work tirelessly to overcome the economic and social factors that have contributed to the leadership gap.

For example, Deborah Perry Piscione, CEO and creator of Alley to the Valley (A2V), has empowered women everywhere by creating what she calls the proverbial female golf course– a national deal-making community of more than 10,000 accomplished women (investors, entrepreneurs, corporate executives and service providers). A2V members come to the table with an ask and an offer (what it is that they need to get to next level and how they are willing to help others), and fast tracks business for each other.

Another force in promoting deal-making for women, Patricia Lizarraga, Managing Partner at Hypatia Capital, is passionate about ensuring that women are well represented in the C-Suite at America’s largest companies. Her firm’s mandate is to sponsor female CEOs in both growth equity and buyout transactions. She encourages the community to do the same through their digital platform, Hypatia Invests. Her ultimate goal is to see a world where 50 percent of CEOs are women.

Similarly, Pam Yanchik Connealy, CFO & COO of Kiva, works to ensure that women (and other financially excluded groups) around the world have equal access to financial services that help alleviate poverty. Through Kiva’s online global marketplace platform for crowd-funded micro-loans, lenders can help women start businesses, go to school, lead their communities and build strong families.

These women, along with many other inspiring individuals with unique and diverse perspectives, will participate in the first ever Women in Leadership track at SuiteWorld19, sponsored by Deloitte Digital.

Building on the overwhelming success and support of last year’s lunch event on the topic, this year’s conference will have dedicated sessions that allow attendees to workshop negotiation tactics with The Second City, challenge inherent bias with diversity experts, and understand the impact of empowering women financially, both at home and abroad. Attendees will leave sessions with tangible takeaways on how to bridge the leadership gap, promote inclusion within an organization, further their personal career development and build up the women around them.

For more details, check out the SuiteWorld session catalog under the “Women in Leadership” audience filter. All sessions will be available to Discover Pass holders. Get your free Discover Pass with code CDDEM19. 

Guest Satisfaction Surveys – The Right Questions to Ask and How to Deliver It

5 Reasons Restaurants Must Do a Guest Satisfaction Survey

Restaurants can improve the quality of their restaurant and guest service if they get serious about satisfaction surveys.

  • Gain honest feedback about your business with answers to specific questions.
  • Measure your progress as you make changes at your restaurant.
  • Engage a loyal customer base that feels like you care.

As a restaurant owner, you know what the two most important ingredients for a successful business are: good food and happy guests. While you’ve probably mastered your list of recipes and food suppliers, happy guests can be tricky. Guest satisfaction surveys are an easy way to measure how well you’re doing in all aspects of your service.

Think of surveys as a tool to help you understand the guest experience more deeply and how you can improve it. They also provide new opportunities for you to engage repeat guests and promote events or new aspects of your business so you can be more profitable.

Before you create a guest satisfaction survey, check out these five reasons why you should do a guest satisfaction survey with some examples of the right questions to ask to achieve your goals.

1. Get honest and measurable feedback

Feedback from a survey is usually less biased and more honest than reviews on Yelp.com and social media for two reasons. First, reviews and comments are usually heavily influenced by emotions and specific experiences that inspired guests to post them. However, surveys prompt them to consider their experiences, rather than waiting to hear them in one extreme way or another.

Second, surveys can be anonymous and private. If you simply put the survey with your guest’s bill, they can quickly and privately share feedback while the experience is fresh without feeling the pressure of confrontation from the server or identifying information on social media or Yelp.

If you want honest answers and lots of participants, the survey must be short, easy to fill out and measurable with quantitative and qualitative questions. You want to have only a few questions with one or two that are measurable over time with ratings like:

  • 1 – I will not recommend your restaurant.
  • 10 – I’m going to tell everyone I know about your restaurant!

How would you rate the quality of your service today?

  • 1 – Terrible. I will not come back.
  • 10 – Best experience ever – I’ll be back again.

How was your meal?

  • 1 – I did not enjoy my food.
  • 10 – I loved every bite.

By associating a numbered rating for a piece of data in your survey, you have a direct number to point to once you implement a change and host another survey. This way you have a concrete data point to measure your progress over time.

2. Find ways to improve

In addition to getting honest, measurable feedback from as many guests as possible, you’re going to want tangible ways to improve your restaurant. If you’ve never done a survey before, you can simply ask:

How was your experience at our restaurant, today?

This open-ended question will allow guests to provide direct feedback about what they liked or disliked about eating at your restaurant.

If you want to know exactly what they liked or disliked you can break it into two questions.

What did you like most about dining with us, today?

What would you like to see improved for next time?

Or you can do a follow-up question to a rating question.

What can we do better for next time?

In addition to open-ended questions and follow-up questions for ratings, you can also ask about specific experiences, facilities or menu items.

If there is something new about your restaurant, such as a menu item or serving style or you want specific advice on areas you feel you can improve, you can ask a more detailed question.

For example, let’s say you just opened a new patio dining area, you can ask what guests liked and disliked about it.

What do you think of our new patio dining area?

  • Loved it.
  • It was ok, but you still need (provide space for a response, here).
  • I did not use the patio dining area.

You can also ask questions about servers, food quality or menu.

How was your server, today?

Were you happy with your meal choice, today?

Did your meal meet your expectations based on the menu description?

Ultimately, you have to figure out what needs to be changed, how it can be bettered and be okay with hearing feedback about your services.

3. Discover who your guests are and what they need

Another key data point you should know as a restaurant owner is who is your guest? By asking how frequently a diner has eaten at your restaurant, you will get a good idea for who this person is and how well they know your restaurant. It will also help you gauge who’s coming back.

Have you dined with us before?

  • This is my first time.
  • Yes, I’ve been here a few times.
  • I’m a regular – you practically have a menu item named after me.

You can also inquire why they chose your restaurant or whether they came with kids if you’re concerned about being family-friendly.

What inspired your visit, today?

  • Our menu
  • Our location
  • Positive reviews
  • Our website
  • It’s date night
  • We needed a family-friendly restaurant

4. Choose the best format for your brand

If you’d like guests to do a survey, consider which delivery method is best for your restaurant. According to OpenTable, 1 in 8 restaurant diners will post a review after dining. Since many people are inclined to share their opinion, implementing a survey is a good idea.

There are several ways you can serve a survey. Most commonly restaurants use a paper insert with the bill. More recently restaurants use a tablet. Other methods include email and SMS text message.  

Many restaurants use SMS text messages to alert you when your table is ready. It would be a natural fit to send a survey after the meal is complete. In fact, 1 in 3 diners is open to SMS marketing, according to stats by Review Tracker and Franchise Help.

You could also encourage Yelp and Facebook reviews. eMarketer reports that direct engagement of only 1 percent can lead to a boost of 25 percent in positive online sentiment. 

No matter which method you choose, you have to select what is best for your restaurant.

5. Promote special events, new menu items and coupons

Getting the word out about special events and new menu items can be tough without a strong repeat customer base. Sure, you can advertise online, but being able to email guests directly can increase your business and allow for more opportunities.

Offering coupons or other incentives will entice diners to complete your surveys, share their experiences, or come back to dine. Sixty-nine percent of diners said that complimentary extras will encourage them to return to a restaurant.

For example, maybe guests will receive 10 percent off their next meal, get a free drink or appetizer or get a certain amount of points in your new rewards or loyalty program. 

If this is the case, you can also collect contact information so you can send emails or newsletters for promotional events or new surveys in the future.

If you’d like to know what type of events your guests would attend, or new menu items they’d like to see, ask them. Be sure to use multiple choice for things you’d like to offer that way you’re in control of the events or new menu items you’d like to host.

What type of event would you attend at our restaurant?

  • Special Valentine’s Day Dinner and Menu
  • Live Music Night
  • Happy Hour

What are we missing on our menu?

  • Vegan, Vegetarian, or Gluten-Free Food Options
  • Appetizers
  • Desserts
  • Kids Menu

Finally, make sure your survey is free from typos and is easy to read. Think of the survey as promotional material, so it should be on brand with your restaurant with your logo, colors and the overall vibe of your restaurant.

When the server comes with the bill, have him or her make sure the guests know it’s there and that it’s private. This will ensure your guests fill it out and provide honest answers that will help you take your business to the next level.

Next Steps: Once you review the data from your survey, save the information in a spreadsheet so you can make a prioritized list of improvements and have a way to compare your data to the next survey you do once the changes are in place. And, if appropriate, share the results of your survey with staff in order to help them improve, too.

How Two Family-Owned Businesses Beat the Odds

Succession planning is essential for family business survival, especially for those where leaders are nearing retirement. According to the Family Business Center, 70 percent of family businesses would like to pass their business on to the next generation, but only 30 percent will be successful.

In Part 2 of a webinar series on family businesses, NetSuite’s Ranga Bodla sat down with Dean-Paul Hart, second generation President of Compac Industries, and Matt Grant, second generation Owner and Vice President of Sailrite, to find out how family businesses should approach transferring power from one generation to the next.

People are key to the family business

Most family businesses consider all employees, blood relatives or not, to be family. Hart considers Compac employees extended family members.

“We love family. Not just our own but all the families that work here. The 32 employees at Compac are really 32 other family members we support,” he said, noting that Compac’s feeling of family is fundamental to the company’s continued success. “We wouldn’t be where we are today if we didn’t have such great people to count on.”

Valuing employees is important at all companies, but even more so within family-owned businesses. This is essential to keep in mind as family businesses start thinking about succession planning. At Sailrite, Grant explained there are at least a dozen people that are integral to the day-to-day business. As he advises the next generation of leadership, there is a major focus on effective management.

“Don’t try to micromanage those people by learning their jobs and take over what they’re doing,” he said. “You need to fold them into the business and transition them into the next generation as well.”

It is important for family business owners to relinquish control in some areas and delegate to more proficient employees. Compac puts a large focus on identifying the strengths of employees to pinpoint any gaps in the business and make sure employees handle what they excel at. Hart recently hired his two nephews – one to manage ecommerce and one to manage social media, neither of which are Hart’s strengths. Both Compac and Sailrite insist employees, relatives or otherwise, are the keys to their success.

Start succession planning early

Relatives should be immersed in the business long before leadership is in sight. Hart joined the family business halfway through his undergraduate degree and worked every position at the company—running and fixing machines, filing paperwork, accounting—to learn the business from the ground up. Grant and his wife Hallie started working at Sailrite straight out of college. With mentorship from Matt’s parents, they learned each product line and department, and eventually took over the business themselves.

However, as the family business grows, it’s impractical for third or fourth generations to learn all aspects of the business. Older generations must provide guidance about business operations and strategy with a major focus on mentorship. At Compac, Hart documents and celebrates today’s successes and failures, so the next generation can improve upon them. Equipping family members with proper training is critical.

“Handing down leadership is what’s going to sustain Compac Industries for many years to come,” Hart said.

For Sailrite, succession planning has been top of mind recently. With a non-owner brother, two sons and a nephew involved in the day-to-day business, the Grants need to figure out how to incorporate everyone. Before the kids came into the business, the Grants were thinking “what is our out-strategy?” Now they’re thinking “what is our succession strategy?” Matt plans to seek counsel and education to better understand the succession process.

“We have maybe 10 years to prepare for it, but honestly I think it’s going to take that long to prepare and do it properly,” he said.

Technology is essential for long-term survival

With the internet and pressure from disruptors like Amazon, family businesses must evolve their business models and incorporate modern technology to stay competitive.

Both Compac and Sailrite credit their investment in NetSuite as an integral part of their long-term business and succession strategies.

Compac uses NetSuite for financials, accounting, warehouse and inventory management. Based on NetSuite best practice recommendations, the company adjusted business processes that had been in place for over 35 years, sparking better business visibility and eliminating manual efforts on the backend. Compac employees feel more empowered with better internal communication and the ability to work anywhere, anytime via the cloud.

Technology was an essential part of the leadership transition at Sailrite, which runs NetSuite for financials, accounting, inventory, ecommerce and Bronto email marketing. Sailrite uses Bronto to continually engage customers, build brand loyalty and increase customer retention. This unique custom content strategy sets the brand apart and drives future purchases.

“We wouldn’t be the company we are today if we didn’t have tools like [NetSuite and Bronto]. Before NetSuite, I thought we would look at a new ERP every 3 – 5 years since technology moves so quickly and I always assumed something better was out there. In 12 years, there hasn’t been a next best thing.” Grant said.

Learn more about how to successfully transition your family business to the next generation.

Distributor and Servicer Reveals Its Motivations for Switching from Macola to NetSuite

NetSuite’s Ranga Bodla recently sat down with Jeffrey Gradek, President of Filter Services, a leading distributor and servicer of commercial and industrial filtration products, to discuss the company’s decision to move off Macola to a true cloud ERP system. Filter Services went through a rigorous analysis and evaluation of solutions from Prophet21, Microsoft Dynamics, IBS and NetSuite, and ultimately chose to go with NetSuite. Below are highlights from the conversation.

Ranga Bodla: What motivated Filter Services to look for a new system?

Jeff Gradek: We had the nightmare situation of coming to work on a Monday morning to find out that our file server was corrupted. This had happened before but this time, all the files, including backups, were corrupted; the company was gone. We wanted to be a successful filter company, not an unsuccessful technology company.

Bodla: Why did Filter Services decide on a cloud-based system?

Gradek: Initially, I investigated both on premise and cloud systems. The decision to go cloud was two-fold. I decided that I didn’t want to have a file server on premise that would take my sights off what we’re good at: filters. Beyond that, catering to a changing workforce was essential. Today’s workforce wants to work with cloud, and the cloud and its browser environment are more in line with the skillset people already have.

Bodla: Besides cloud, what were your other evaluation criteria?

Gradek: Macola’s system was clunky and relatively slow. The environment wasn’t intuitive, and it was hard to train people on. Our new system needed to be user friendly, easy to navigate and easy to learn. The system needed to be fast and agile, and able to address both sides of our business. A lot of vendors had separate services and distribution solutions, unable to accommodate both in one platform. We needed our services and distribution businesses on the same system. Finally, I knew that selecting a CRM would be a project of mine soon. NetSuite’s CRM being part of the platform was a huge selling point for me.

Bodla: What kinds of process improvements have you seen since running on NetSuite?

Gradek: The effects on our financial statement and cash flow were immediate. Financial statements are constantly up-to-date, and we can now close a month within just a few days. Having accurate, real-time data allows me to better budget and plan for the future. But what’s most exciting? We’re expanding and opening a new office in Indianapolis. The ability to have employees in other offices see the same dashboards as headquarters, and being able to manage them from a distance, is a game changer.

Bodla: Do you have any advice for current Macola, or other legacy system customers looking to make a switch?

Gradek: Choose the company that is going to put you in the best place to win 10 years from now. I wanted to partner with a company who’s investing in their technology, who’s growing, who’s listening to the market, who’s forward thinking and who’s going to have the best product for the next 10 years. That’s a large reason I chose NetSuite. If I were to choose a platform again today, my experience would dictate that NetSuite is still the right company to help us see success for the next 10 years.

Download the webinar for more insight into accelerating growth with a true cloud ERP.

ACCOUNTING FOR YOUR MISSION

Learn Why Nonprofits Turn to Cloud Financials to Streamline Operations and Accelerate their Mission

Nonprofits operate in a world of significant complexity, limited resources and software solutions that hinder efficiency. Whether it is the continuous friction between the fundraising and accounting departments around actual revenue and delivering a superior donor experience or trying to link outcomes with the true cost of programs, nonprofits have struggled to find business application solutions that can meet their needs in an affordable manner.

Nonprofits regularly rely upon a hairball of dangerously unreliable spreadsheets supporting aging accounting systems in an attempt to generate insight into their mission. Many are constrained with solutions that were built for a different time, where the accounting system of record was all that mattered and where systems had limited computing capability.
The relatively low cost of maintaining those systems masks the cost of inefficiencies in routine tasks like the monthly close or, more importantly, the dissemination of reliable information upon which decisions can be confidently made in a fast-paced environment.

Click Here To Download the Full PDF Article

G2 Crowd Names NetSuite Leader in Nonprofit Accounting Software

Following on a strong list of industry awards, NetSuite has been named a leader in Nonprofit Accounting based on peer-to-peer reviews. NetSuite offers a true nonprofit accounting solution, including fund & grant accounting, automated FASB reporting, and simplified financial segmentation.

NetSuite’s nonprofit customers include Alex’s Lemonade StandBrightpoint HealthIdaho Farm Bureau and San Francisco SPCA, leveraging cloud ERP to manage their operations and focus on their social missions. This accolade, driven by actual users providing reviews about the products they use to run their organizations, solidifies NetSuite’s position as the industry leading solution for nonprofits looking to grow their social impact.

G2 Crowd is a leading peer-to-peer review platform for business software. Their research reports and vendor comparisons are based on user ratings and social data.

About G2 Crowd, Inc.

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A Retailer’s Survival Guide in This Digital World Filled With Instant Gratification

Between the popularity of shopping on Amazon, an evolving consumer (thanks, millennials!) and a changing definition of what it means to be a retailer, businesses in the retail space are faced with a plethora of challenges right from the start.

But that doesn’t mean starting a retail company is impossible.

Cue Kelly Scott: One of Oracle NetSuite’s Product Marketing Managers who joins this episode of “The NetSuite Podcast” to break down what it really takes to succeed in the retail industry today.

Scott dives into the challenges she’s seeing retailers face right now as well as those she predicts will hit in the future, revealing that one of the core solutions to all of these challenges is a personalized and customized experience for the consumer.

“I think the biggest challenge of every retailer, no matter what you do is [continuing] to up the experience for the ever-changing consumer,” she says, adding that some kind of unique experience “is what every retailer will have to do to survive in this day and age.”

She also dives into ways brick-and-mortar stores should be adapting to the evolving market, noting the importance of blending a physical experience in a digital world and providing some great, real-life examples of companies that are doing just that. And no, she does not think brick-and-mortar stores are “dying.” (Save your condolences).

Scott discusses everything from social media influencers and the effect they’ve had on millennials’ discretionary income to the daunting question about whether Amazon is a friend or foe.

Learn more by tuning into the full podcast episode on Apple PodcastsSoundcloud and YouTube. As always, don’t forget to rate, review and subscribe!