Dopaco Boosts Productivity at Manufacturing/Distribution Centers

Global packaging company credits gains to Catalyst implementation of SAP WM and SAPConsole

Global packaging company credits gains to Catalyst implementation of SAP WM and SAPConsole

Milwaukee — July 1, 2005 — Global packaging company Dopaco has seen a 10-15 percent gain in productivity at its manufacturing and distribution centers following the implementation of an SAP WM solution by supply chain execution (SCE) solutions provider Catalyst International.

Dopaco, a subsidiary of Cascades, is a global foodservice packaging company that manufactures a variety of paper and plastic foodservice packaging throughout North America. It also serves customers in Asia and Australia.

The company partnered with Catalyst to implement an SAP WM and data collection solution, utilizing SAPConsole, at a 300,000 square-foot distribution center in Kinston, N.C., and two, 200,000-square-foot warehouses (one of which is also a production facility) in Pennsylvania.

Looking for New Gains

The solution included 12 wireless-enabled transactions, which Catalyst adapted from its library of SAPConsole transaction templates; wireless infrastructure; professional services; and RF hardware from LXE, which offers rugged wireless computers and data collection solutions.

The installations were completed in late spring 2005, and Dopaco immediately achieved a 10-15 percent gain in productivity, which it expects will increase to 25 percent by year's end, according to Catalyst.

By automating its processes and eliminating time spent searching for materials, Dopaco also has reduced its labor and improved product visibility and tracking, and the company has begun to consolidate partial pallets and less-than-truckload shipments. Once Dopaco covers its initial costs, it expects the implementation to achieve ongoing annual savings of $600,000.

No Technical Issues during Cutover

"Catalyst was a logical choice for us because of its considerable experience with SAP WM and SAPConsole," said Wayne Anderson, IT director for Dopaco. "Catalyst helped us quickly sort through our technology options, and the efficiency and proficiency of its development team was just outstanding. We never thought it was possible to complete that many transactions in such a short time frame."

According to Anderson, two other keys to the project's success were Catalyst's project management leadership and the go-live training and preparation of Dopaco's end-users. Catalyst had all the infrastructure and equipment in place two months before going live so material handlers, production personnel, shippers and others could get comfortable using the technology and the LXE MX3X forklift-mounted RF terminals and MX6 hand-held terminals.

"We also were able to test the RF infrastructure and identify any potential problems, such as weak coverage areas," says Anderson. "As a result, we had no technical or personnel issues during the cutover process."

Dopaco plans to convert three more of its facilities to SAP WM over the next year.


Additional Articles of Interest

— For more information on the latest trends in the fulfillment space, see the article "The Analyst Corner: Fulfillment & Logistics" in the October/November 2004 issue of Supply & Demand Chain Executive.

Understanding and filling customer needs collaboratively adds more value than designing processes and systems to beat the competition. For an example of how one company did it, read the SDCExec.com article "Aligning Fulfillment Metrics to Customer Segment Requirements."

— Your company's back-end supply chain may be so efficient that you are the envy of all your competitors. But what about the customer-facing portion? Taking a look at the "last mile" in your supply chain may be what it takes to ensure your customers come back to you  and not your competitors  time and again. Read more in the SDCExec.com article "The Last Mile Is the Longest Mile."


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