Volume 26/Number 17; January 7/14, 2013
ATLANTA—The latest web services technology demonstrated at the recent fcB2B (Floor Covering Business to Business) annual meeting here was met with universal excitement and enthusiasm.
In a live demonstration, Chad Ogden, president of QFloors, showed how his company’s flooring software could connect with Shaw and several distributors (J.J. Haines and Jaeckle, both using Dancik software) and immediately check stock in their warehouses.
Ogden demonstrated how an employee on the showroom floor could pull up the QFloors invoice screen and select products. There were three line items on the invoice—one product to be purchased from Shaw, Haines and Jaeckle, respectively. By clicking the “check stock at sup- plier” button, he was able to instantly see how much of that product was available in the sup- plier’s warehouse.
Ogden also explained how clicking another button immediately pulled up all the related products for each item. For instance, what glue or trim pieces might be needed to install a particular product and their availability.
The active demonstration by Ogden was a major talking point of the conference. While QFloors, Shaw, Dancik, Haines and Jaeckle are the only companies that currently offer the technology, many other manufacturers, distributors and software providers are actively working to soon offer the same technology to their customers.
The fcB2B meeting was “by far the most productive meeting we have ever had,” said Mitch Dancik, fcB2B co-president and chairman of Dancik International.
Pam Bowe, executive director of fcB2B, was equally enthusiastic. “You have the brightest of the brightest working on these technologies. They are dedicated and are building tools that will work for our industry.”
Aaron Pirner, fcB2B co-president, reflected on the group’s synergy. “We have fierce competitors in that room, but they’ve put that down to do something that is clearly in the best interests of everyone in the industry, and that is driving down costs. There’s simply no personal infighting. I’m so impressed.”
Ogden explained why, in part, this newest technology is so exciting. “It all boils down to economics. People are in business to make money. That’s the goal. Flooring is such a competitive, price-driven business. So, in order to truly profit, your overhead costs must be as low as possible while still providing a good customer experience. B2B technology streamlines things. Utilizing technology like this drives down the cost of doing business, which is just as important to your bottom line as closing that sale. It gives you a competitive advantage.”
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