Panels Direct is emerging from many years as one of the industry’s ‘sleeping giants’ thanks in part to the introduction of Business Micros’ EvoNet business management software.

The Keighley based company is using EvoNet to transform its operational efficiency, giving it the perfect platform from which to expand and raise its profile.

Panels Direct already produces 1500 PVC door panels per week, alongside 150 composite doors and 300- 400 REHAU windows, but it is now targeting a significant increase in those numbers in response to growing demand.

The company has used Business Micros’ Evolution manufacturing software since 2004 but an investment in new machinery and the appointment of Steve Miller as the Sales Manager led to a review of the software requirements within the business.

Steve Miller explained: “When we were looking at ways to improve efficiency and streamline the operation as we start to increase our volumes even further, EvoNet really was the only software solution which was capable of giving us all that we needed. It manages and tracks everything from order processing to despatch and can be fully tailored to our specific business requirements.”

At Panels Direct, the EvoNet business management software is now logging all orders as they are received and automatically assigning each customer with a production and delivery slot before the job is even fully processed. In turn, it is automatically ordering the glass required and then auto batching the frames to optimise efficiency.

Using barcode scanning, EvoNet allows Panels Direct to track every order as it moves through the factory from cutting and welding, right through to gearing and quality control and the generation and recording of all ancillary packs. All items related to every order are then also scanned on to the vehicle ready for despatch.

From a customer’s perspective, this means that more orders are being supplied on time and in full, with live order status updates available whenever required.

Steve Miller continued: “We’ve already achieved our aim of a paperless factory and we are now implementing a full document scanning system so that we can also move towards a more efficient paperless office.

“The dashboard function within EvoNet is crucial as well because it is allowing us to see an instant overview of how the business is performing and get real clarity on where we need to improve or where we are performing well as we make our plans for the future.”

After the success of the EvoNet project, Panels Direct is already working with Business Micros to create two new online ordering portals for both its panel and composite doors which customers will be able to use on any device to design, quote and place orders.

Steve Miller added: “Led by Chris Bailey, the team at Business Micros has built a really impressive understanding of our business. We see this very much as a long term partnership with them now, and we will be working with them to continue developing and tailoring the software so that it meets our specific needs as we grow.”

Panels Direct is developing a new website which will incorporate the online ordering portals. Further details on this and the rest of the company’s range are available from Steve Miller on: 01535 604040 or 07999 973514.