Cellphone Provider Switches to Acumatica, Implements ERP in 90 Days
Open Mobile is a mobile telecommunications provider that serves tens of thousands of customers across Puerto Rico, and which enjoys direct relationships with major cellphone suppliers such as Samsung and Apple. With eighteen stores, several towers, hundreds of employees and a thousand vendors, Open Mobile is a well-respected player in the island nation’s cellphone marketplace.
Its financial system, though, needed an overhaul. Inherited from its predecessor, it wasn’t fast, intuitive or optimized for our needs, said Open Mobile’s Chief Financial Officer, Federico Grosso. “The interface was obsolete and the product was expensive. The financial reporting was very bothersome. We had to go the system to a data warehouse system, to Microsoft Excel and then to a report.”
The Senior Director of Information Systems, Rafael Diaz, agrees. “It was really an old application,” he says, “very inconvenient, not easy to manage. There was a lack of features available in the accounting system. I also wanted to have connectivity with Microsoft Office. That was not in there.”
Diaz also expressed frustration over the inability to manage the system internally. “We had no control over the system. I would need to go to the vendor even for the most insignificant issues.”
The Open Mobile team looked around. They investigated Oracle eBusiness Suite and Microsoft Dynamics, as well as Acumatica. Their local partner, Bob Bolte, owner of New Day Technology (NDT), a Puerto Rican IT firm that helps companies define and implement mission critical solutions, reports that Acumatica was chosen because it delivered requisition management with approvals and budget control as well as all required ERP workflows, all for a fraction of what they would have paid for the other products.
Diaz had concerns about control, but an Acumatica technical manager convinced him. “He said we would stay in control. We would be given the option to upgrade, and could choose to upgrade or not. That was a key factor in the decision. Another factor was that we could do the hosting, but if we didn’t like it, we could change.”
The CFO, Federico Grosso, says, “Acumatica was a fully integrated, cost-effective ERP solution. Our business objective was to increase efficiency in key processes:
- requisition workflow
- purchasing and Accounts Payable
- expense report automation
- financial reporting
Diaz adds, “The system is very solid—it has a lot of tools. It’s robust but also allows you flexibility.”
Open Mobile became an Acumatica 4.0 early adopter, with a SaaS license. They purchased the Financial Management and Distribution suites, plus Fixed Assets. They also plan to obtain the Project Accounting Suite.
Diaz reports, “Implementing the Acumatica system in 90 days was a huge success, one that that also included migration of the data from the legacy system. We got a lot of support from the local provider (NDT) and from the main office. We always felt we had the commitment from Acumatica that the project would be successful.”
“I don’t think there has been such a successful implementation here as this one,” says Diaz.
According to Federico Grosso, Acumatica will help Open Mobile in several ways. “It will place us in a position to improve accounting processes and efficiencies… [and] financial reporting and analysis. We can spend less time extracting data and more on analysis. It will increase the integrity of our data. Before, we had to have an analyst working no less than two or three hours full-time on the report. Now, you can click a button and get it yourself.”
Grosso adds, “The fact that you can access the workflow from any place on any device is great. I recently understood the full benefit of this capability when I was away from the office, in the middle of [a] congressional hearing. Someone sent an email saying, ‘I need an approval, it’s urgent.’ I pulled out my phone, logged on to Acumatica and was able to approve the request. I said, ‘This is amazing.’ This is twenty-first century technology and it really will make a difference.”
For the CFO, having a reliable ERP system is critical: “It’s crucial to have data integrity, and crucial that we have in-house knowledge and support. Acumatica was one of the best projects we did at Open Mobile; on-time, on-budget. We’re very happy here.”
Additional information about Acumatica’s cloud ERP services including demos and pricing are available at Acumatica.com here.
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By Steve Prentice