Gradient assist Branston with the selection of specialist software

The Client

With sites in Lincoln, Scotland and the South West, Branston supply retail, wholesale and food manufacturing customers with fresh and ready prepared potatoes. They do this with the help of dedicated potato growers who deliver high standards demand, day in, day out.

Branston initially asked various functions across their business to create a set of statements on their wants and needs regarding deliverable functionality from a new ERP.  These MoSCoWs could be used as the raw material for a Statement of the Requirements document.

The Problem

Gradient were to review the created MoSCoWs. They were also on hand to give assistance regarding the overall process of identifying potential vendors/solutions. Gradient were to match Branston with those most appropriate.

The Solution

Branston were clear on what they wanted from a new ERP solution. Gradient was able to bring a methodology to the process of selecting a preferred supplier.

Actions

  • For Gradient, this was a different approach to that typically followed. Branston gave us detailed documents outlining their requirements against many functional threads. It is vital to regonise the effort involved. But also to adapt the individual MoSCoWs into something against which vendors are able to respond to.
  • Once complete, Branston was provided with a mapping document so that there was full traceability from the MoSCoW to the related question within the Statement of Requirements document produced.
  • Three vendors came in after responses had been received and scored to demonstrate against a detailed script. Consequently, this exercise enabled the business to select their preferred supplier.  Further exploration of the potential new system led Branston to determine which of their requirements would be satisfied with the initial project phases and those that would come later.

Benefits

There was a desire to revisit what was done in the past as Branston had considered various external consultants. Gradient did not take that approach. Instead, we worked with each of the thread owners to ensure that we understood what they were trying to achieve. We did this before simply adapting the requirement into a format that each potential vendor had to respond to.  This led to some benefits:

  • The thread owners had involvement in the process and investment in the final decision
  • Complete clarity in the requirements. This enabled Branston to set priorities as well ensuring the chosen vendor had addressed all requirements
  • We were able to “translate” what the business needed into terminology that the vendor could understand. We educated the Branston team in ERP terminology. As a result they were aware of what to expect from standard functionality and what would likely be bespoke
  • The effort through the specification process will ensure the selection of the correct ERP system and partner.

What the Client Says

“It was refreshing to work with someone prepared to take on board what we had already done and where we wanted to go – rather than force us to work ‘their way’. This allowed Gradient to seamlessly join and positively influence a running project.”