Company Delamere Pottery Limited, which produces earthenware tableware, founded in 1997 after obtaining assets of T.G. Delamera & Co ltd. Company acquired a functional structure to better support the increase in turnover (Williamson et al., 2004, p. 53) in new markets areas that offer greater margins. To enhance the competitiveness, company launched a new strategies in business, marketing and finance mainly to increase gross margins by 10% and increase customer satisfaction together with a reduction of inventory (Williamson et al., 2004, p. 207).
Business strategy is mainly based on the more efficient use of existing resources of the company. With implementation of the ERP system, the company promises to improve the planning, transparency and shortening process times and increasing the performance. ERP systems are often used by manufacturing companies to achieve a competitive advantage (Zhang et al, 2005, p. 69). ERP system helps companies create a strong information infrastructure, more accurate decision-making thanks to always actual data, enhance the overall quality and streamline the exchange of information between departments, suppliers and customers (Shatat & Udin, 2012, p. 577).
Further costs reductions, the company tried to streamline production by reducing the overall waste. Basically to become ´´lean´´ and build an efficient, just-in-time manufacturing system to increase the overall quality. According to Lewis (2000, p. 962), company which is lean, is effective in transforming inputs resources into outputs, this reduces the costs and increase overall business financial performance. Becoming more ´´lean´´ (having lower costs) is one of the advantages over the competition (Lewis, 2000, p. 964).
Source: Lewis (2000, p. 962)
One of the main asset of the company are employers. To increase the overall success of the company can be achieved by: increase communications, increasing cooperation and following common goals, raising creativity and innovation, emphasizing on continuous development, empowering people (Kourdi, 2003, p. 84). Marketing strategy relies mainly on improving quality of products, service and so increase the overall brand reputation. Delamere Pottery Limited wanted to differentiate from competition through their products, supply chain and marketing (Williamson et al., 2004, p. 90) and so obtained higher saleability.
The achievement of this strategic plan had five segments: Quality, Design, Service, Reliability, Brand awareness (Williamson et al., 2004, p. 210). Marketing strategy was closely linked to business strategy, with emphasis on the lean production. Improvement of manufacturing processes has a direct positive impact on the quality of the products and also thorough better controlling of the packaging, labeling and delivery of products can reduce costs. The company sought to be recognized as a progressive and innovative (Williamson et al., 2004, p. 210), therefore been given a lot of emphasis on design.
Decisions in product design can have a large impact on cost, but also with design can be achieved the differentiation from the competition and getting higher profits (Desai et al, 2001, p. 37). Be credible among customers, the company tried to improve service, improve communication and improve the performance in the delivery of finished products to the customers on time. To support this plan has been introduced customer relationship management (CRM). Another tool how to increase turnover is to enhance the brand awareness.
Greater brand awareness among customers increase the differentiation from competition and gives firm the possibility to increase the prices of products. Financial Strategies Delamere Pottery Limited was divided into two main parts: increasing gross margin and additional turnover (Williamson et al., 2004, p. 211). The results of gross margins depended on the success of the implementation of ERP system, lean manufacturing and improved distribution and getting the brand into public awareness. Additional turnover was possible made by sale of selected products for specially selected markets and the gradual-depth sales to particular markets.
In company Delamere Pottery Limited the main emphasis has been taken on comprehensive manufacturing strategy. To support this strategy, in year 1999 was presented the system MPC (Manufacturing, Planning, Control). MPC should be associated with the other main functions such as finance, purchasing, sales and marketing (Williamson et al., 2004, p. 216).
According to Williamson et al. (2004, 216-218), the implementation of MPC system, company received the following benefits: -With connection to ERP system is possible to have more efficiently planning and greater control of the production. -With connection to CRM system improve communication and service with customers. Significant improvement of delivering products on time. Increase of £2M in turnover. -Better inventory management, increased stock turns. Reduction in working capital £120.000. -Better recognition of loss-making and non-contribution products. Enhance in pre-tax profits of £150.000.