Since its founding in 1976, Park 100 Foods has been an industry leader in the development and manufacturing of food products, including soups, sauces, fruit toppings, pie fillings, chili, portioned breaded meats, and side dishes. The company’s headquarters are in Tipton, Indiana, and it has production facilities there as well as in Morristown and Kokomo, both in the same state. There is also a fruit processing plant in Michigan.
In its product development and production, Park 100 Foods connects sophisticated culinary research, stringent quality assurance, and controlled, compliant processing in its state-of-the-art facilities. Park 100 Foods customers run restaurants and provide food services. While many of them are large operations with thousands of locations, others are early-stage businesses. Park 100 Foods works with clients of all sizes, developing food offerings without requiring an upfront investment as long as it undertakes the eventual production.
Search for a modern, versatile, and flexible business management system
When Park 100 Foods broadened its product portfolio, expanded its production facilities, and won many more customers, it reached the limits of what its 15-year-old Genesis Accounting software could accommodate. In consequence, the company’s growth became a liability in terms of controlling the business and managing operations.
It did not help Park 100 Foods that Genesis Accounting had limited functionality and never fulfilled initial expectations. The software was difficult to learn and use, did not easily yield the information and insight business managers looked for, and insufficient training meant users were poorly prepared and frustrated.
Park 100 Foods leaders understood that they could not achieve the growth goals of the company’s strategic plan without an investment in the infrastructure of the business. They also needed to find ways to satisfy more sophisticated and demanding customers and to meet increasingly stringent FDA requirements for ingredient labeling and processing.
Integrated solution built for the food industry
A review of the food industry software market soon made Park 100 Foods aware of To-Increase Food Manufacturing and Distribution for Microsoft Dynamics NAV. The To-Increase solution incorporated rich expertise in the food industry and process manufacturing. The company also found a highly experienced technology and implementation partner in Columbus. Thom Bondus, Chief Financial Officer at Park 100 Foods, explains, “Timing was perfect. We received a telemarketing call. We needed a new system. Dynamics was based on Microsoft technology, easy to use. We didn’t have time to compare, we saw what To-Increase Food Manufacturing and Distribution could do—it delivered.”
Park 100 Foods decided to deploy an industry-ready ERP infrastructure that integrated Food Manufacturing and Distribution with Dynamics NAV. To the decision-makers and planners at Park 100 Foods, the mobile transaction processing, process manufacturing, and quality management capability sets in Food Manufacturing and Distribution were among its most valuable components. Another feature important to Park 100 Foods was that Food Manufacturing and Distribution lacked a limitation they had noticed in competing products that would support only one possible production output for a bill-of-materials (BOM). The solution lets you define multiple outputs for a BOM, designate them as co- or by-products, and track them in separate lots.
“We did not want to waste time,” says Bondus. “You don’t save time shopping, comparing. You’re just kidding yourself. Food Manufacturing and Distribution could do what we needed. We didn’t need to compare with MAS 90 and others. It would have been a waste of time if we did.”
Thorough training and smooth deployment
Columbus used its expertise to minimize business interruptions during the implementation. “People don’t understand what’s involved in a new implementation,” comments Bondus. “We hadn’t done one in 15 years. The conversion went extremely well. 99.9 percent of our data exported without a problem. The exporting occurred during our training, so when we went live, everything was up and running. We had no problem after the conversion, everything went perfect.”
Park 100 Foods took great care to ensure thorough training for technology users on all aspects of working with the new solution. “Initially, we trained 20 people,” says Bondus. “We didn’t realize everything what Food Manufacturing and Distribution could do.”
Immediate productivity improvements and deeper use of the solution
Positive differences became noticeable immediately after the implementation, resulting in a fast ROI. Productivity increased in many processes and tasks. To mention one example among many improvements, while it took 30 minutes to produce a company report with the Genesis software, in Food Manufacturing and Distribution it only took 30 seconds. Bondus and his colleagues also liked that it was easy to find information in the solution and export it to Microsoft Excel for further analysis and reporting.
Since the deployment, Park 100 Foods has engaged with its technology partner to help employees find ways to use Food Manufacturing and Distribution more effectively and adjust their practices to changing business conditions. “There is just so much functionality, every year it gets better and better,” says Bondus. “I’m thrilled by everything it can do.”
Effective support for large-scale growth
Park 100 Foods expects that Food Manufacturing and Distribution together with Microsoft Dynamics NAV will be able to scale and adjust to support the company’s growth and shifting requirements for many years to come, always elevating productivity and customer satisfaction. Both the projections for growth and the confidence of managing it successfully are extremely high. Bondus remarks, “We anticipate that Park 100 Foods will grow 100 to 200 percent due to the implementation of this state-of-the-art system. Don’t compare. Don’t waste time, save time and money, purchase Microsoft Dynamics and To-Increase Food Manufacturing and Distribution. You won’t regret it—ever.”