SBS Friction

Sound collaboration and much confidence in the implementation of D365

SBS Friction, a firm that develops, manufactures and markets brake pads, had reached a point concerning their existing Dynamics AX where it was just a matter of time before the system became a limiting factor to the firm. Also, the firm has developed to the extent that, today, it is different as compared with how it was at the time of the AX implementation. The time was ripe for a digital upgrade.

About SBS Friction

SBS Friction develops, manufactures and markets brake parts and friction technology for motorbikes, scooters and ATV/UTV vehicles plus a number of special areas for the application of friction technology, comprising wind turbines.

    An upgrade was necessary, and therefore this was not up for discussion

    ”An upgrade was necessary, and therefore this was not up for discussion. It was important to us that it should be a business project rather than an IT project. Focus was constantly on the business, a primary target was to bring us in closer contact with our customers and optimise our supply chain. And all should be based on the most novel technology within a Microsoft environment, and we definitely succeeded,” says Carsten Schmidt, CFO at SBS Friction.

    Carsten Schmidt

    - CFO hos SBS Friction

In November 2019, SBS Friction went live on Dynamics 365 – exactly as planned and within the budgetary framework. Owing to several demanding integrations with e.g. robotics in the production, and the renumbering of products due to the introduction of a new product system, the complexity of the project was relatively high. The team also had plenty of opportunities for testing the scope of the D365.

”We’ve definitely dealt with many aspect of D365, and we exploit many areas of the application. The reason why the project was so successful can be ascribed to several circumstances. Internally, we had a team of talented people at important posts. At the same time, Daxiomatic contributed with a team of expert consultants. First, the professional point of departure represents high levels of expertise and, secondly, the level of commitment was also very high. They will go the extra mile for the purpose of looking into details and finding solutions if things won't work,” says Ann-Marie Sørensen, D365 Project Manager, explaining about her experience of the collaboration with the Daxiomatic people.

Challenges are solved by the team

Even though, seen from an isolated point of view, implementation of D365 is about technology, it will be the team members who, at the end of the day, will decide whether the project will perform well and become a success. For instance, the project was affected by illness in the course of the process which the collective project team coped with and handled in such a way that it did not become an impediment to the project.

“We have functioned as a team, and focus has constantly been at the target. I've participated in several ERP implementations and, more than once, I've experienced the atmosphere between provider and project manager to become rather tense. But definitely not in this case. In the course of such a comprehensive project process there will always be challenges, but rather than place blame or look after causes, we have concentrated on finding solutions together. I experience the Daxiomatic people to contain a strong combination of high expertise coupled with informality. This constitutes a basis for really fine collaboration,” says Ann-Marie Sørensen.

The importance of being straightforward and transparent

A working partnership in which everybody dares to vent their worries, objections, proposals and questions is important throughout the project. Any criticism should be brought out into the open to be assessed, otherwise it cannot possibly be taken into account. For this reason, it was an immense advantage that Daxiomatic’s way of working is characterised by precisely openness and perceptiveness.

“The people from Daxiomatic did not have a ready-made solution, even before we met, as they are very well aware that no two projects will be similar. They listen to us and consider us to be important and strong resources for the project. The combination of their competences and experience from other projects and our detailed knowledge of our business has constituted the point of departure we needed. Our collaboration with Daxiomatic was a very strong one, and confidence considerable,” says Carsten Schmidt.

Increased uptimes and less waiting time in the production from day one

Anyone involved in the implementation of ERP will know that the commercial gains will be long in coming. It will be some time before you will actually consider the application of a completely new system to be an upgrade. Nonetheless, SBS Friction has already realised considerable profits. Quite concretely, it was decided to run the production part asynchronously with the Microsoft servers, which means that vulnerability in respect of server breakdown was eliminated.

In the production, the result of the new solution was pronounced from day one – owing to increased uptimes. Also, the control of the production being transferred to a SCADA system means much less waiting time in the production, during print of labels and documents, and when reporting.

The existing AX solution was no longer up-to-date, and there was a desire for integration into for instance webshop and SCADA systems which would be both difficult and expensive to meet.
SBS Friction opted for changing into Dynamics 365 and had, in this connection, collected customer and product-related data in a PIM system and placed the control of the production in a SCADA system.
The maintenance of data is much simpler, and data are kept within D365 without adaptation. The PIM system facilitates the construction of a webshop and, also, the production has been optimised and thus, for instance, waiting times have been reduced.