The ways builders buy their building materials is about to change… BUILT/ is an exciting new business venture (in partnership with a leading industry player) that will pioneer significant changes in the building materials industry. Currently, the building supplies sector for trade has a very traditional, relationship-based approach to commerce, with pricing for building supplies negotiated from customer to customer.
Those same customers, while very familiar with today’s on-demand economy in their private lives, are not seeing it reflected in their business life. While the three issues of range, price and proximity are as important as ever, there is also a craving for consistency and transparency, which the traditional model cannot easily deliver against.
BUILT/ will bring the building supplies industry in line with other, forward-thinking retail sectors, providing customers with a choice of purchasing methods for the building materials they need, both online and off-line.
In short, customers will have the option to buy online for collection at a dedicated place and time, or arrange delivery to an address or a locker. They can also walk in and make their purchase at their local warehouse shop-front, or use the quick and convenient drive thru for orders made online. Such a wide, and easy to use range of choices will cement BUILT/ as the number one choice for the professional trade.
The complex requirements of this project called for an extremely robust and forward-thinking ERP and WMS combination. The team at BUILT/ considered several options before settling on the combination of NetSuite with WAERlinx; clear winners in terms of their functionality and flexibility.
A typical BUILT/ customer will be a process tradesperson or general builder. They will place an order for building materials in advance and book a time slot to collect them. If they have added their vehicle registration number during the ordering process (where prompted) their licence plate will be registered upon arrival and signs will direct them to the BUILT/ Drive Thru, where BUILT/ operatives will be ready at assigned collection points to load the different materials being purchased. Each site will be divided into a number of zones based on the type of material being stored.
Additionally, BUILT/ will ship building materials to customers at their chosen delivery address, or to collection lockers using their own vehicle fleet as couriers. The WAERpod proof of delivery app will be used with drivers’ iPhones to record delivery, keep customers informed of their order status and plan efficient routes, all of which will be tracked and recorded back to NetSuite.
“We were really impressed with the flexibility of WAERlinx and the experience and knowledge within their development team. We are extremely confident that we have made the right choice and that WAERlinx will be instrumental in making this project a huge success.”
Nick Thomas, BUILT/ CEO
BUILT/ has a complex and challenging set of requirements, however, WAERlinx’s built-in flexibility makes it easy to modify to the solution in order to tailor it to the needs of the project, some of which are outlined here:
- Standard WAERlinx receiving and put-away amended to combine into a single process, determining a location for the put-away based on the part number parameters for that warehouse (which can be manually over-ridden)
- Locations are maintained where possible, in order to present a ‘shopfront’ type experience to the customer
- Collection and delivery orders are prioritised and picked according to urgency
- Inventory is allocated and dispatched for convenience of pick and delivery
- Order amendments are captured in real time, hence they are managed in real time
- Customer ID is used to identify the order that is to be picked – and for matching it to the receipt signature
- Partial collection of an order can be recorded and logged if customers wish to return at a later time
The project is scheduled to go live in August 2017 and will challenge traditional thinking in this market. We are very excited to be working with BUILT/ on this brand new proof of concept.