The Harris Products Group Transforms Sales and Service with SAP Variant Configuration
Instead of hundreds of SKUs for every variation of a base product, they went to a single product that can be configured within SAP.
SKUs were starting to skew the way The Harris Products Group was able to serve their customers.
The company, a subsidiary of Lincoln Electric and world leader in metal working products used in the brazing, soldering, welding, cutting and gas distribution industries, was tracking over 10,000 SKUs for their regulator and manifold products in Excel documents. A base product with a single variation got its own SKU. It was overwhelming their resources and time consuming – leading to longer turnarounds from customer order to shipment. Competitors, sometimes even with a higher price, were able to ship within days, giving Harris a competitive disadvantage.
Creating new SKUs was also time consuming when a customer requested a new variation of a product. To create a SKU, the process went through engineering for the design, marketing for the data to sell it, finance to price it, all of which took weeks to accomplish. In the end it was also costly due to the amount of manhours needed to create a single SKU.
Orders Ship in 1 Day vs. Weeks
Order turnaround went from weeks to days – giving significant competitive differentiation.
Save many labor-heavy hours with an automated approval process through SAP.
Time Savings in
One Configuration in SAP Instead of Many SKUs
A Strategic Approach to Variation
To improve order turnaround time for customers and simplify the process of creating SKUs and tracking and organizing their inventory, Harris opted to use SAP Variant Configuration based on eLogic’s strategic advisement. Instead of hundreds of SKUs for every variation of a base product, they went to a single product that can be configured within SAP. A single manifold could have variations in design, and the inlet and outlet of the manifold could have unique specs.
These variations in design, along with accessories, are now available in a single, configurable product. And with some custom work in SAP VC, eLogic created product codes specific to a customer’s order, replacing SKUs, and saving that customer’s variation automatically for the next time they order it.
A New Competitive Advantage
The results are impactful. The turnaround for a new product order went from three weeks to a day from the moment the customer submitted an order to the time it was shipped from their facilities around the world. All this improved customer experience and service, while offering Harris the edge it needed against the competition.