- Case Study -

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Directing the Action


“JobOps is wonderful to work with. They maintain a great level of communication with us, inviting us to user group meetings, sending newsletters, making regular phone calls. It’s clear that the focus of their business is building relationships with long-term customers—which is ideal for us.”

Mark Carter
IT MANAGER AT SECOA

Operations Management (JobOps)

 

JobOps Orchestrates an Efficient Solution for SECOA

Challenges That Led To A New System

With thousands of stocked and special order items, plus custom manufacturing and installation services, SECOA is a distributor, a manufacturer, a custom job shop, and a contractor.

Results Delivered From Sage 100 & JobOps

Sage 100 and JobOps manage all aspects of the company’s operations whether it is straight manufacturing and distribution, custom design and development, or complete project management.

Overview

Internationally acclaimed theatres, municipal symphony halls, and rural county high schools all depend on Stage Equipment Corporation of America (SECOA) for a full line of stage rigging equipment, orchestra pits, lighting, curtains, sound panels, and more. SECOA completed the fabulous theatre at the Venetian Resort in Las Vegas—built specifically to house the Phantom of the Opera production. The award-winning Guthrie Theatre in Minneapolis was also a SECOA major project.

 

Directing The Action

Over five years, SECOA saw its revenues double to over $20 million a year. Such growth often requires a corresponding increase in staff. However, SECOA has not had to increase its accounting and direct sales staff level by a single person. Mark Carter, IT manager at SECOA attributes this feat to the technological efficiency gain, “The software minimizes the number of manual steps performed, and as a result, we can do more work with the same staff.”

What’s SECOA’s secret? Five years ago, SECOA purchased Sage 100 ERP and JobOps through Scanco Software Solutions.

“By leveraging the software, we’ve been able to scale up to meet increased demand—with no growing pains,” explains Carter. 

 

A Contractor, Distributor, and Manufacturer

With thousands of stocked and special order items, plus custom manufacturing and installation services, SECOA is a distributor, a manufacturer, a custom job shop, and a contractor.

“Our clients see us as a contractor since our full line of equipment can essentially turn an empty building into a fully finished theatre,” explains Carter. “We tend to think of ourselves more as a custom job shop.”

Sage 100 and JobOps manages all aspects of the company’s operations whether it is straight manufacturing and distribution, custom design and development, or complete project management.

 

Working Behind The Scenes

Most projects require some customization of SECOA’s product offerings. Sizes vary, as do colors, fabrics, finishes, and so on. Even the most intricate manufacturing project details are tracked handily by JobOps.

Parts purchased and used in the manufacturing process are expensed to a project. Purchase orders can be linked to a work ticket to allow for easy tracking of committed expenses for a project.

Stage lighting is purchased directly from the manufacturer and SECOA arranges to have these items drop-shipped directly to its customers. Sage 100 and JobOps handle drop shipments easily—customer and product information are transferred automatically from the work ticket to the purchase order, eliminating all manual data entry. The system maintains a link between the purchase order and the work order, making it easier to find the status of a product when a customer asks.

 

Tracking Costs And Revenue

Project managers are able to review costs for their projects using informative inquiry screens and reports. Detailed reports show costs for each phase of a project, including parts, labor, overhead, and subcontracted services. At any time, they can compare actual project costs to estimates, helping them identify potential problem areas quickly.

Labor costs are entered into the TimeTracker module and applied to a project. Later, the time entries are exported to SECOA’s payroll service provider.

The company’s estimating procedure has been refined with its years of experience, and JobOps provides ample history of past projects and associated costs to help SECOA’s estimators nail the numbers.

SECOA sends progress bills to its customers. To accommodate the way SECOA does business, Scanco configured JobOps with a WIP bypass function to allow the company to expense the to date project costs upon billing.

 

Partner Plays Starring Role

Carter appreciates the relationship SECOA has developed with JobOps over the years, “JobOps is wonderful to work with. They maintain a great level of communication with us, inviting us to user group meetings, sending newsletters, making regular phone calls. It’s clear that the focus of their business is building relationships with long-term customers—which is ideal for us.”

Carter and the management team at SECOA couldn’t be happier with JobOps, “We have a building full of happy users.

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