SAP drinks to beverage success

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SAP is offering a direct store delivery (DSD) capability for SAP Beverage to help integrates beverage manufacturers' back-end IT systems with mobile devices to help field sales representatives and delivery drivers quickly respond to customer requests.

Using the direct store delivery capability for high-rate order taking, sales people should be able to enter orders into mobile devices and then upload the orders into a main order log and back-end system. The orders can then be released to the warehouse for picking, packing, and loading and dispatched onto the trucks in order to be delivered according to customer-specified periodic delivery cycles.

"SAP's beverage solution and DSD functionality allows manufacturers to respond more quickly to customer requests," said Nils Herzberg, senior vice president of the manufacturing sector for SAP. "DSD couples multiple sales channels, including the Internet, telesales, and on-site interactions, with sales order fulfillment, supply network planning, and transportation planning to support direct contact between manufacturers, distributors, and their customers."

DSD's centralised access system also provides detailed customer information and sales history to improve customer service and allows drivers to adjust shipments to meet customers' needs, even if they fluctuate throughout the business day.

It also enables companies to group customers according to periodic delivery cycles. Orders are taken according to these delivery cycles from call centres, pre-selling representatives, or delivery drivers. Once orders have been entered, the system creates shipments by dispatching the orders onto vehicles until the capacity, the drive time, or the maximum number of stops has been reached.

In addition the integration with mySAP Mobile Business menas that route accounting functionality allows a driver to check materials out of the warehouse, make deliveries, return to the warehouse to check in returned materials and collected payments, and finally balance and settle materials and payments. Using a mobile device, the driver logs all of the activities during the given route. The driver views a list of all visits, and for each visit either performs the necessary activities -- sale, delivery, invoice issuing, cash collection -- or updates the customer's status.

SAP plans to provide additional DSD functionality for non-beverage companies over the next twelve months. The DSD offerings for mySAP Mobile Business will be delivered early in the second quarter of 2003.

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