RockSolid MAX brings productivity gains, greater business insights to independent hardware and lumber retailer
It’s only been two years since Sharri Fuller and her team at Toronto Lumber switched to RockSolid MAX® from ECi Software Solutions to run the business. But somehow, it seems so much longer.
New integrated POS: An end to wasted time and the start of greater business efficiency
Gone are the days when Sharri would have to stay long after the store closed, because she couldn’t use the computer to put together orders during regular hours, and when office manager Jessie Hoag would need eight hours to figure out the company’s sales tax payments.
RockSolid MAX has freed up valuable time for the folks at Toronto Lumber; they can now spend time where it matters most—taking care of customers and growing the business. It has also given them a far better idea of how their business is doing than they ever had before.
Toronto Lumber has been a fixture of the Kansas farming community it calls home for more than 100 years. In many ways, it embodies the best of today’s independent hardware and lumber retail community: owned and operated by the same family for the past 38 years, and proud of its ability to give a loyal customer base more than enough reasons to buy from them instead of the nearest big box.
It’s a small operation with just four employees, but business has been good in recent years, fueled by a strong local economy and a willingness to change in response to shifting market trends and new opportunities to run smarter and more efficiently.
New cloud-based software technology is essential to competing in today’s market
Not surprisingly, technology figures prominently among the changes the Toronto Lumber team has put in place in recent years.
Before switching to RockSolid MAX, the business had been run using a Database Management System (DBMS) system. That may have worked just fine once upon a time, but not anymore, says Jessie. “The cost of technical support was also a big issue for us,” she continues. “We don’t have access to any local IT resources and any time I tried to get help from DBMS, I was paying by the hour, and all those charges mount up.”
Jessie and her team started looking for new software and it didn’t take long before the obvious choice emerged. “When we decided to switch out of DBMS, we looked at several other systems, but RockSolid MAX really gave us everything we needed,” she remembers.
Fully integrated POS makes managing the workflow simple
“I really liked the way everything was integrated within the program, so that you could handle all the purchasing, inventory, accounting and so on without having to switch in and out of other programs like QuickBooks®,” she says.
Managing workflow was a whole lot better, too. “With RockSolid MAX, you can follow the paper trail on an order very easily, and that’s particularly helpful for special orders,” Hoag says. “You can track everything from the initial quote all the way through to the sale. It’s easy to search and easy to follow with RockSolid MAX because everything is all linked together. That just wasn’t available to us with DBMS.”
Intuitive to use because it’s designed by hardware store people, for hardware store people
And with RockSolid MAX, there were no worries about buying features that they didn’t need. “RockSolid MAX was designed by hardware store people for hardware store people and it definitely feels more tailored to a business like ours,” Jessie points out.
“RockSolid MAX has made our purchasing and receiving so much easier and its search capabilities—whether it’s a matter of item look ups, order history, customer activity, or anything else you might want to know about the business—are really fast and easy to use.” And, she reports, “Figuring out those sales tax payments that before took eight hours or more now gets done in just 30 minutes.”
Reliable software support enables the company to focus on business, not technology
Technical support is also a whole lot better since moving to RockSolid MAX, says Jessie. “The support we got from RockSolid MAX when we made the conversion was wonderful. The people we worked with were very competent and accessible and their training resources were really good. They have a great library of online videos that you can use on your schedule and they really taught me a lot.”
Support continued strong after Toronto Lumber went live. “It doesn’t happen very often, but if I need to, I can call RockSolid’s 800 number and get somebody to walk me through a problem or do a fast support session. I’m working with someone who really knows the program and cares about looking after us. And all that’s included in our monthly support fee,” she says.
Cloud-based architecture essential to data backup and security
Plus, the program’s cloud-based architecture means nobody at Toronto Lumber has to worry anymore about backing up the system and bringing hard drives home with them every day.
“Without RockSolid MAX, we really didn’t know what was going on in the business,” Jessie admits. “We just didn’t realize how much we couldn’t do and how many capabilities we were missing out on.”
Two years after switching to RockSolid MAX, life at Toronto Lumber is so much better. “Everything runs a lot smoother and our time on just about everything has been cut in half,” she happily reports. “When I compare it to our old system and look at how much time we’re saving, RockSolid MAX has made a huge difference. We’ve taken on a lot of new business in the past few years and we just wouldn’t have been able to do that if we didn’t have RockSolid MAX to run things.”