OrderWise 2018: The Year In Review
As 2018 comes to an end, we thought we’d take a look back at what has been another hallmark year for the company. As we continue to progressively move forward as a business, our software has also continued to improve through our commitment to ensuring OrderWise is up-to-date with all the latest technological advances and industry innovations.
Across 2018, over 600 items of development have been added to our ever-evolving software. These have included multiple new features for our integrated eCommerce platform, some substantial new modules and useful enhancements to key areas of OrderWise such as Store EPOS, Business Intelligence and our Mobile WMS Devices. All of these 600 new developments have been specifically designed to improve existing functionality within OrderWise and help customers to increase the accuracy, efficiency and productivity of their daily business processes.
As well as all this, 2018 has also been filled with a number of memorable moments for OrderWise as a company too, including plenty more awards success on both a regional and national level.
With this in mind, let’s look back at some of the big OrderWise software additions and company achievements that have occurred over the last 12 months.
Target And Maintain Positive Customer Relationships With OrderWise CRM
Arguably the biggest addition to our software this year was the introduction of our new CRM module back in February, built to work both in-system and through the OrderWise Mobile App.
Unlike most standalone systems, OrderWise CRM offers staff an integrated workflow management tool and central hub for all their customer interactions, accessible both from their desk and on-the-move. Designed to help customers maintain positive customer relationships and target the right prospects, OrderWise CRM also saw numerous additions in 2018 following its initial release, including CRM access from within Outlook emails and full activity history visibility when working online.
OrderWise CRM will no doubt see further additions in 2019, but already users are benefitting from being able to build more profitable customer relationships through an integrated CRM system, seamlessly linked to their Sales, Marketing and Business Intelligence tools.
Effectively Target The Right Customers With OrderWise RFM Profiling
Coinciding with our new CRM system, another major development to OrderWise at the start of the year was the incorporation of our RFMA (Recency, Frequency, Monetary, Activity) profiling tool into the main system.
Built to enhance the effectiveness of sales and marketing activities, RFMA is a framework which quantifies key customer behaviours such as enquiries and purchases to give each customer a score, and then enabling them to be segmented on this basis. Working alongside OrderWise Marketing and CRM, businesses can use our RFMA tool to easily highlight their most profitable customers, better understand their buying behaviour and then focus their marketing efforts through more targeted campaigns.
Drive Repeat Purchases From Your Current Customers With Loyalty Schemes
Arriving in April, another major new feature added in 2018 was the ability to create and manage customer Loyalty Schemes. Designed to help our Store EPOS users drive repeat purchases and keep customers coming back, this functionality enables businesses to create their own loyalty schemes and effortlessly assign customers to these, so they can earn and redeem points in-store. From using this Loyalty Scheme feature, users have been able to take advantage of valuable customer reward programs to boost sales, developing their brand image through increased loyalty and incentives that help attract new customers.
Maintain Picking Efficiency With The Stock Consolidation Module
Warehouse Management is one of the key elements of the OrderWise solution, and this August we welcomed our Stock Consolidation module to our Mobile WMS Devices.
Helping to minimise warehouse travel times, this functionality enables users to bring back together multiple quantities or pallets of the same item spread across multiple bins, merging all this stock back into a common location. Once max quantities and percentages for bin locations have been set, pickers can simply use this functionality to pull and place stock from numerous locations across the warehouse and consolidate them back into a single empty bin. Through utilising this module, users of our Mobile WMS Devices have been able to ensure picks and other warehouse activities can continue to be completed in the most accurate and efficient manner.
Automatic Email & SMS Updates With Customer Alerts
Also arriving to OrderWise in August was our Customer Alerts module, giving businesses the ability to automatically send email or SMS text updates to their customers, based on various in-system triggers. With the flexibility to determine how and when these alerts are sent to customers, businesses can easily keep clients in the loop following an order being placed, shipped or becoming ready for collection. This not only increases customer satisfaction but also boosts profitability as customers return again and again, having experienced the buying experience and attentive service they’ve now come to expect.
With new additions due for 2019, the capabilities of our Customer Alerts functionality is already set to grow over the coming 12 months and beyond.
New Features to aid legislation compliance
One of the biggest things to happen to businesses this year was the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) coming into law back in May. This marked the biggest change to data privacy laws since the Data Protection Act (1998) and ultimately dictating to businesses how they should be handling personal data moving forward.
To aid OrderWise customers with their compliance to GDPR, development this year also included additions to customer contact forms to display several new fields; lawful basis to store and process, last updated and last updated by whom. Further functionality was then added to be able to record this information through the OrderWise Mobile App when speaking to customers out of the office, as well as the ability to redact customer details too. Through these additions, OrderWise users have all the tools they need to record their lawful basis for processing, ensuring they can accurately maintain their GDPR compliance.
Looking ahead to April 2019, this September we also introduced HMRC API integration to OrderWise Accounts in preparation for Making Tax Digital. This integration helps to facilitate the digital submission of VAT returns, enabling companies using the ICAEW accredited OrderWise Accounts module to ensure that come April next year, they are fully compliant with MTD.
Best of the rest
It would be impossible to fit in all the best enhancements and new features to OrderWise from this year into one article, so why not check out our Newsletters to learn more about some of the other headline additions to our software in 2018.
Hundreds attend our first annual OrderWise Business Connect Expo
2018’s big moments weren’t just about the innovations added to our software – this year also saw us host our first annual Business Connect Expo. Held at the Everyday Champions Centre in Newark, the event saw us welcome existing OrderWise users from across the UK and Ireland to network with like-minded industry professionals and gain exclusive previews of upcoming developments to our Business Management Software. As well as this, there was also exhibition stalls, an engaging line up of speakers offering tips and advice on best business practices, and a Q&A with key department heads within OrderWise.
It’s safe to say the inaugural event was a great success and we can’t wait to host it again in 2019 – stay tuned for more details!
Investment & work begins on Goods-to-Person Robotics Technology
As well as this, our Business Connect Expo also saw us announce our ongoing work into Robotics Technology. A real landmark in the company’s growth, this recent technological enhancement was showcased to existing clients for the first time over the summer and has been expertly developed and tested in-house throughout 2018, making OrderWise the first ERP and Robotics provider.
Being built to run seamlessly alongside the main OrderWise Business Management Software, our integrated robotics technology aims to help businesses reduce costs, fully optimise warehouse space, maximise pick rates and ultimately drive forward business growth. Although this year saw us invest £2 Million into researching and testing this technology, as well as transforming part of our premises into a Robotics Testing & Demonstration Centre, this is still only the beginning. Watch this space for more on our Warehouse Robotics in 2019!
Multi-Award success in 2018!
Building on our incredible achievements in 2017, the past twelve months have been another great year of award success for OrderWise. Our accolades this year have included:
- Digital Performance – Winner, Direct Commerce Innovator Awards
- Overall Business of the Year – Winner, Lincolnshire Media Business Awards
- Innovation Award – Winner, Lincolnshire Media Business Awards
- Business of the Year, Lincolnshire Technology & Innovation Awards
- Business Person of the Year – David Hallam MD, Lincolnshire Technology & Innovation Awards
- Multi-Channel Solution of the Year – National Finalist, Retail Systems Awards
- Business & Product Innovation – East Midlands Regional Winner, FSB Awards
However, it wasn’t just about our own success in 2018 – as the 2017 recipients of Family Business of the Year, we also had the pleasure of being a part of the Midland Family Business Awards as headline sponsors and judges. It was an honour to be a part of this process and hear all the success stories from across the region, with Ward Recycling the deserving recipients of the OrderWise Family Business of the Year crown. Once again, huge congratulations to all the nominees and winners on the night!
Roll on 2019!
So, with 2018 seeing hundreds of new software additions, even more awards success and our first Business Connect Expo, 2018 is going to a difficult year to top. However, with more businesses coming on board, new developments already in the pipeline and our investment into Robotics set to expand in the new year, we are optimistic that 2019 will be another hallmark 12 months for the company!