Kaufman Container has enjoyed substantial returns on its investment in Epicor ERP software thanks to skilled consulting, implementation, and training services provided by Encompass Solutions, Inc. and Epicor Software Corp.

The Project

Kaufman had been running several non-integrated systems before the implementation of Epicor ERP. During that time, these non-integrated platforms led to colleagues having to do each other’s jobs. One example included a lack of confidence in the inventory on hand. with no trust in the system data, users had to manually confirm inventory availability.

The Epicor implementation effort was owned by Kaufman IT Director Larry Keilin. “The transition from our old system to our new system was less painful than I expected for many employees, the day you switch from an old system to a new system is the day they love the old system,” Keilin commented. “A large number of our employees got on the Epicor bandwagon and became excited about all the work they can now do that they couldn’t do before. We are truly seeing the benefits, for example, for the purchasing department, the Buyers Workbench is such a useful tool that it stands out, and our customer service department loves the way they can take an old order, copy it, and create a new one-it’s a huge time saver for them.”

The Details

  • 70 Concurrent Office Users
  • 15 Concurrent Data Collection Users
  • 8 Database Users
  • On-Premise Deployment

The Challenge

Challenges for this project are both substantial and essential to overcome if Kaufman were to make the most of its new ERP system. First, overcoming the lack of visibility for purchasing decisions, which up until this point had been made using days’ worth of research and inventory management via Microsoft® Excel® worksheets, would be essential.

Second, The lack of real-time transaction data gave little insight into how Kaufman was performing at any given point in time. Finally, the organization’s multiple costing methodologies provided inconsistent gross margin calculations.

The Goals

Kaufman Container implemented its Epicor ERP solution with the primary goals of:

  • Better tracking of sales and gross margin data to salespersons and customers.
  • Improve inventory management.
  • Integrate production management.
  • Growing revenue and profitability.

The Results

Encompass Solutions was contracted by Kaufman to perform an end-to-end business process review (BPR) which was critical in helping to determine the optimal business processes to follow. This would yield the maximum benefit from the newly implemented Epicor ERP product. The BRP was completed in just one week and helped outline areas for improvement as well as recommendations for systems and process improvement moving forward into implementation. 

Every business area was taken into account during the assessment and recommendations for changes in engineering, production, inventory, purchasing, costing, and accounting departments were presented. In particular, a go-forward path that included additional modules to offer a substantial benefit to production and inventory management was provided by Encompass

When asked how he felt we performed in our assessment, Keilin offered, “Encompass has done a great job at assessing the situation, with BPR guidance to systematically attack and resolve pain points following the implementation.”

Improvements included:

  • High return on investment that saw overhead costs cut by 30%.
  • System usability improved significantly as a result of easy-to-use dashboards and report generation.
  • Business Process Management (BPM) provided users the ability to set conditions and actions that added functionality to the system, tailoring screens and processes as needed.
  • Reorganization of sites, warehouses, and bins enabled quick and easy product location for issuing to jobs or shipping.
  • Parts purchasing was made easier with the visibility of time phase reporting.
  • The consistent average cost across all product lines.

Full Kaufman Container Case Study

About Kaufman Container

For the past 100 years, Kaufman Container has been a leader in the North American market in providing quality and innovative packaging components and value-added services. From our beginning, our focus has always been on giving our customers exactly what they are looking for. Kaufman Container continues to be your “One Stop Shop” for all your packaging needs.

an image of the case study kaufman container corporate headquarters

Today, Kaufman Container continues to be a privately-held, family-owned business that operates two key facilities in the Midwest. The business offers a wide variety of products and services, warehousing, quality and technical support, logistics assistance, and an in-house decorating facility.

About Encompass Solutions

Encompass Solutions, Inc. is an ERP consulting firm, a NetSuite Solution Provider, and an Epicor Platinum Partner that offers professional services in business consulting, project management, and software implementation. Whether undertaking full-scale implementation, integration, and renovation of existing systems or addressing emerging challenges in corporate and operational growth, Encompass provides a specialized approach to every client’s needs. As experts in identifying customer requirements and addressing them with the right solutions, we ensure our clients are equipped to match the pace of the Industry.


Kaufman Container is a leading packaging sourcing center in the United States. For the past 100 years, the company has provided packaging components, custom and stock molds, package development, quality assurance, and technical support to a wide range of customers and markets. Kaufman’s capabilities are endless, offering a variety of products including glass, plastic, aluminum, and metal containers, tubes, closures dispensing systems, celon bands, and more. The Kaufman Container Case Study serves to illustrate how operations and process improvements resulted in a 30 percent reduction of overhead costs, thanks to internal teams and the Encompass Solutions implementation staff.

an image of the kaufman container case study illustrating how operations and process improvements resulted in a 30 percent reduction of overhead costs.

 

Prior to their Epicor implementation, Kaufman was running several non-integrated systems, and users were having to do each other’s jobs—for example, if inventory was needed for a job and one of the systems stated there was inventory on hand, there was no trust in any system of reference, and the material was manually verified to be there.

Larry Keilin, IT director, spearheaded the implementation of Epicor. “The transition from our old system to our new system was less painful than I expected—for many employees, the day you switch from an old system to a new system is the day they love the old system,” Keilin commented. “A large number of our employees got on the Epicor bandwagon and became excited about all the work they can now do that they couldn’t do before. We are truly seeing the benefits, for example for the purchasing department, the Buyers Workbench is such a useful tool that it really stands out, and our customer service department really loves the way they can take an old order, copy it, and create a new one—it’s a huge time saver for them.“

Kaufman initially implemented Epicor ERP to work as closely as possible to existing business processes, as followed with their legacy ERP. While there was a successful transition to Epicor, partnering organization Encompass Solutions identified that Epicor was not being used to its full advantage, and that there were some additional modules that would need the implementation to get maximum functionality from Epicor ERP.

Kaufman contracted Encompass Solutions to perform an end-to-end business process review (BPR) to determine the best business processes to follow and unleash the maximum benefit from the newly implemented Epicor ERP product. This one-week exercise flushed out many areas for improvement, and a recommendations document and go-forward plan were implemented. Kaufman’s key goals from this BPR were to achieve better tracking of sales and gross margin data to salespersons and customers, improve inventory management, and integrate production management.

Every business area was assessed, and recommendations for change were made, particularly in the areas of engineering, production, inventory, purchasing, costing, and accounting.

Some key recommendations were to continue the implementation with some additional modules that were not included in the initial cutover—including CRM and the Epicor Configurator—as well as better implementing production and inventory management. Encompass provided a go-forward path to have everything implemented.

Other key recommendations were changes to costing to allow Kaufman to be more specific in assigning costs for production times, to leverage time-phased material requirements to drive purchasing decisions, and to expand the number of warehouses and bins used to reduce the amount of time staff spend locating inventory. A plan to move Kaufman to the scheduling engine was also produced—typically refinements over a six-month period provide an accurate, trusted model.

“Encompass has done a great job at assessing the situation, with BPR guidance to systematically attack and resolve pain points following the implementation,” concluded Keilin.

Kaufman Container Case Study

About Encompass Solutions

Encompass Solutions is a business and software consulting firm that specializes in ERP systems, EDI, and Managed Services support for Manufacturers and Distributors. Serving small and medium-sized businesses since 2001, Encompass modernizes operations and automates processes for hundreds of customers across the globe. Whether undertaking full-scale implementation, integration, and renovation of existing systems, Encompass provides a specialized approach to every client’s needs. By identifying customer requirements and addressing them with the right solutions, we ensure our clients are equipped to match the pace of Industry.