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The company

Forstinger provides a wide variety of automotive accessories and has been a successful business since the 1960s. The company now has 115 stores in Austria with a staff of approximately 1,000. Annual sales amount to €130 million. Forstinger strives to use its corporate resources wisely. In that spirit, the company decided to optimize its order and invoicing processes in the long run and opted to use Electronic Data Interchange (EDI).

The challenge

Prior to implementing electronic ERP processes, Forstinger exchanged orders with its suppliers via fax or e-mail. However, there was no guarantee that the suppliers actually received the orders. For example, when orders were not filled, suppliers often attributed this to orders that had not been received. In addition, all merchandise was entered into a store’s system manually using the physical despatch advice provided at the time of delivery. These despatch advices were manually checked against the delivered merchandise. In the case of a mismatch between the actual order and the delivered merchandise, stock keeping units had to be created manually. Ultimately, this translated into additional work when checking invoices upon their receipt.

Of our 15 most important suppliers – who account for 80 percent of our invoices – twelve will have fully switched to EDI (ORDERS, DESADV, INVOIC) by late 2013. The resulting benefits are clearly tangible and quantifiable both at our stores and our headquarters.

Stefan Urdl, Head of IT

The solution

In an effort to avoid unfilled orders in the future and to make the entire ordering process more efficient, Forstinger, in collaboration with EDITEL, its EDI service provider and its software partner TWZ, changed its ERP system to electronic processes. In the future, the company plans to exchange all business data with its suppliers exclusively via EDI (Electronic Data Interchange). First, electronic orders (ORDERS) and invoices (INVOIC) were implemented, which ensures error-free delivery processes. Subsequently, merchandise receipt processes were automated via electronic despatch advices (DESADV).

Safe and traceable data exchange
Forstinger now exchanges order, delivery and invoice data with its suppliers via eXite®, an EDI platform. One of the company’s requirements was that all transferred and received data had to be monitored on a permanent basis, which eXite® does. Thanks to the additional implementation of fully automated invoicing, errors or discrepancies can be identified swiftly, which makes checking invoices easier than ever.

Secure archiving
Something else that is now fully automated without the need for a downstream system is the archiving process for electronic invoice data in the EDITEL archive. This ensures smooth processing of all invoices. In case of a tax audit, all original invoice data can be accessed, viewed or downloaded via the archive portal. Thanks to archive infrastructure, certified by the audit firm Deloitte, the invoices’ authenticity and integrity is ensured at all times.

The result

Orders that are never received by suppliers are now a thing of the past. Thanks to the implementation of electronic goods procurement, Forstinger saw significant savings in terms of time and workload at all stages of the ordering and invoicing process. Compared to communication processes with suppliers that do not rely on EDI, the amount of work for processing received merchandise with electronic despatch advices (DESADV) was reduced by 30%. For invoice checking, the amount of time saved was as high as 65%. Paper and printing was reduced by 60%. Furthermore, suppliers benefit from the automated sending of orders and reduced costs thanks to the electronic processing of invoices.

  • EDI Communication via eXite®
    • ORDERS (Orders)
    • DESADV (Despatch Advice)
    • INVOIC (Invoice)
  • E-invoice
  • Digital Archiving
  • Optimized ordering and invoicing process at all stages
  • A single interface for all business partners
  • All exchanged messages are traceable
  • Safe, automated archiving of business data
  • 65% decrease in accounting-related tasks thanks to e-invoicing
  • 30% less work at stores thanks to electronic despatch advices
  • Improved collaboration with suppliers
  • Reduced paper and printing volume by 60%