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Rapidly Expanding Oral Healthcare Provider Laclede Switches to Microsoft Dynamics NAV to Manage Growth, Integrate Tightly Across the Enterprise


Deployment of new ERP system is expected to deliver benefits such as better visibility throughout the company for efficient customer service.

REDMOND, Wash.— Microsoft Corp. today announced that Laclede Inc., the manufacturer of Biotčne and Oral Balance and a developer of biological products that utilize the body’s natural defense systems for the prevention and treatment of gum disease due to dry mouth, has selected Microsoft Dynamics™ NAV to replace its previous enterprise resource planning (ERP) system, Exact Software’s Macola Progression Series. Laclede, based in Rancho Dominguez, Calif., selected the product over SAP Business One based on its track record for accommodating growth and facilitating tight integration as well as its ability to accommodate governmental regulations and currency irregularities associated with conducting business internationally. Laclede has approximately 140 employees who work in facilities in the United States, Europe and South America.

“We had started marketing our products more aggressively, and as a result our growth spiked,” said Dale Lauterback, Laclede’s chief visionary officer. “We used our previous ERP system for eight years, and when we deployed it we had only 20 employees. Then we tripled in size, and the system simply wasn’t able to keep up with our needs. In addition, we were facing more complex FDA regulations and wanted to support the system in-house, which the vendor wouldn’t let us do, so it became very costly.”

Benefits Laclede plans to realize as a result of its new ERP system include the following:

Growth. As a rapidly growing organization with facilities in the United States, Europe and South America, Laclede looks forward to accommodating its expansion with Microsoft Dynamics NAV.

Planning. Microsoft Dynamics NAV will help Laclede efficiently manage its planning, which is the most significant point in the production schedule. The product’s built-in, easy-to-use project planning capabilities, according to Laclede, will be invaluable, allowing brokers, for example, to see the status of their orders, which will increase overall customer satisfaction.

Integration. Seamless integration among disparate constituencies is key to Laclede’s ability to remain competitive. Microsoft Dynamics NAV makes it possible for the shipping department to immediately identify the most affordable shipping option, for all warehouses and stores to have immediate access to the status of orders, and for the company to link with other countries without worrying about currency conversions. Another benefit is the seamless integration with the Microsoft® Office system and SharePoint® technologies and other Microsoft products.

RFID support. Large retail stores are among Laclede’s major customers. Microsoft Dynamics NAV provides built-in support for Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology, which has been mandated by some stores for its vendors. This support enables Laclede to be compliant with this mandate.

FDA validation. Laclede’s products must go through strenuous review and approval processes with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). With the built-in knowledge of those validation processes that comes with Microsoft Dynamics NAV, Laclede considers the product to be an in-house FDA expert.

Efficient support. Hiring employees who are knowledgeable about Microsoft Dynamics NAV, according to Laclede, was easy. Recruiting IT professionals qualified to support other products such as those offered by SAP, on the other hand, was far more challenging and would have been cost-prohibitive.

Laclede worked closely with Western Computer, a Microsoft Gold Certified Partner specializing in the implementation, customization and support of Microsoft Dynamics NAV. Western Computer, in business for more than 20 years and based in Oxnard, Calif., offers a full suite of business products and professional services that provides companies with powerful tools for successful growth and increased profits.

“Laclede’s selection of Microsoft Dynamics NAV is a testament to the product’s proven ability to handle complexities and accommodate aggressive growth,” said Michael Park, corporate vice president for Microsoft’s U.S. Dynamics business. “Deployment of the product will help Laclede efficiently manage its business while delivering better overall customer service.”


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