In 2008, Mike Nanda merged IMM Boat Lifts and Quality Boat Lifts into one company, IMM Quality Boat Lifts. With over three generations of fabricating experience and engineering knowledge, IMM Quality Boat Lifts has been family owned and operated since inception.
A business merger that came with multiple, disjointed systems
A consequence of the merger was multiple, disjointed systems. They introduced QuickBooks for their accounting. Sales orders were entered in a MS Access-based program, ACCPAC was used for purchase orders and scheduling was manual. “We weren’t even keeping track of inventory,” said Mike.
We had no real way to know what was actually going on in the business as far as material in or material out, cost structure, or what the actual Bill of Materials were. Print outs didn’t match with the corresponding lift. No-one took the time to correct anything. To keep the business going in the right direction, we knew it was time for ERP; a one-stop do-it-all software to bring us into the 21st century.
– Mike Nanda, Owner and President
Business growth demands a connected ERP with manufacturing-specific functionality
After the merger, IMM experienced a down-turn in business, which gradually improved, culminating in a really good year in 2018. At this stage, Mike and his team took the opportunity to look for an ERP system to unite the many fragmented systems they were using. The main catalyst was that the work order program they used was no longer supported and it kept crashing. Having experienced constant system crashes, they didn’t want to wait for the fatal blow from an unrecoverable crash that could wipe out their history: product costs, parts orders and other critical information.
The quest for manufacturing functionality that worked with SAP Business One
IMM looked at a number of options. They assessed Job Boss as a machine-shop type of software. Stickboy, from a local developer, was being used by a competitor. The vendor asked to start with a sales order system and add modules from there. “By the time we added it all up, their price structure was through the roof,” said Mike. “We also looked at ACCPAC (Sage 300 ERP), but their price was pretty outrageous,” Mike told us.
So, it came down to M1 and OptiProERP. Based on live presentations with both companies, IMM felt that OptiProERP was the better solution for them, liking how it worked and how they could customize it.
IMM looked at a number of ERP solutions, including JobBOSS, Sage 300, ECi M1 and OptiProERP. In the end, IMM felt that OptiProERP was the better solution for them, liking how it worked and how they could customize it.
21st century ERP accommodates business processes with personalized solutions
What really sold IMM on OptiProERP was its product configurator. While IMM Quality Boat Lifts sells standard boat lifts, the business was looking for an easy way to manage customized or variable orders. “The product configurator was going to be a really good tool for us,” Mike explained. “Our biggest problem was that our sales guys were entering orders with ad hoc notes specifying custom work. The people in the shop weren’t seeing the notes and we were sending out orders that were wrong. We needed software that was actually a 21st century solution, software for the digital age that would help us as a manufacturing company.”
We needed software that was actually a 21st century solution, software for the digital age that would help us as a manufacturing company.
– Mike Nanda, Owner and President
This led us to start looking for a new solution and we had a business advisor who was a supply chain guy from Boeing. He came in to give us a hand and looked at our inefficiencies. The number one thing he said was to get a system that will give you visibility.
– Travis Poe, Facility Director/Founder, HendRx
The fact that OptiProERP’s manufacturing functionality was built on the SAP Business One platform added weight to their decision. Mike also acknowledged that he had heard good things from others about the platform.
IMM Quality Boat Lifts decided to deploy their new system in the cloud. Previously, Mike was the only person able to access their system remotely by mirroring his office workstation on his laptop. Now, when sales people or engineers are on the road, they can have laptops to access the system from anywhere. Mike explained the problem. “If we had questions in the office and the salespeople or engineers were on the road, they couldn’t provide answers because they didn’t have access to the information.”
Mike Nanda, a firm believer of hiring and promoting from within, has given many of his employees, who started out as general labor, the opportunity to learn one of the trades. This currently includes two welders, several in the CNC shop and Josh Armstrong, who is now the Operations Manager.
Recognizing skilled workers as a valuable resource, OptiProERP Work Center allows the specification of a labor-type with specific skill requirements, e.g. trained on a Haas VF-3 Vertical Machining Center. Employees with the requisite skill can be assigned to a labor type, which the system confirms before a production order is released.
IMM Quality Boat Lifts are innovators holding dozens of patents featuring unique design features. With the largest full-time engineering staff of any boat lift company, it’s no wonder that IMM were the first to market for most design innovations found in any boat lift. Manufacturing-specific functionality from OptiProERP delivers the process control, insight into performance, and quality controls to drive profitability and unleash the innovative thinking that is already part of the company culture at IMM Quality Boat Lifts.
Based in Fort Myers, Florida, IMM Quality Boat Lifts design and manufacture the fastest, safest, easiest to use, best looking, most advanced and most reliable boat lifts and accessories.
They are dedicated to developing products that will meet or exceed their customers’ expectations while adhering to world class engineering standards. Their IMM Quality (IQ) team of experienced engineers is constantly examining their product lines. With dozens of patents and many more innovative design features, they are at the cutting age of innovation.
OptiProERP is an end-to-end manufacturing ERP that combines financial management, supply chain, CRM, and industry-specific manufacturing and distribution solutions in one seamless system. Built on the world-class SAP Business One platform, OptiProERP gives small and midsized manufacturers the foundation to scale and compete, without the complexity and cost. www.optiproerp.com
John Houltham, email@example.com