In 2006, Catalyst Papers implemented SAP's warehouse management system at its Surrey, British Columbia distribution center. The story of Catalyst's decision to opt for SAP's solution dates back to 2003 when the company conducted a supply chain review. The review identified a "lack of order visibility" in the order fulfillment process within the company, which was then Norske Canada, a subsidiary of Norske Skog. The approval for the Order Visibility Program came in late 2004. The project allowed Catalyst to consolidate its service delivery teams, eliminating the overlap that had occurred previously. The overall objective was to improve customer service. One of the benefits behind improving customer service was to support Catalyst's specialty papers business. There were also productivity and performance improvements. Finally, Catalyst has a foundation for its distribution strategy: a backbone system for future improvements in the supply chain.
warehouse management By GRAEME RODDEN, Executive Editor The implementation of a new WMS has given Catalyst Paper immediate benefits at its distribution center in Western Canada BEING ACCOUNTABLE TO THE CUSTOMER I n 2006, Catalyst Papers implemented SAP’s ware- Due to mergers and the company changing hands house management system (WMS) at its Surrey, BC, over the previous few years, there were at least five legacy distribution center (SDC). Based on the success of systems still in place. “If we wanted to be efficient, we this project, in 2006, it moved into Catalyst’s Port Alberni, needed to see the process from beginning to end.” BC, mill on the west coast of Vancouver Island. This mill Compounding this situation was that SDC was third- produces 360,000 tonnes/yr of paper (lightweight coated, party operated, although 100% for Catalyst, but using its groundwood directory) while the SDC handles 1.4 million own warehouse management system. Graham Aubu- tonnes/yr of paper. chon, Catalyst’s business systems architect, explains that The story of Catalyst’s decision to opt for SAP’s solu- for example, if a “change order” request came in, Catalyst tion dates back to 2003 when the company conducted could not “see” the original order: where it was or if it had a supply chain review. The review identified a “lack of been shipped. He says the distribution center was almost order visibility” in the order fulfillment process within the a “black hole”. company, which was then Norske Canada, a subsidiary of All of this created what the review termed a “complex Norske Skog. environment” for order fulfillment. As Rolufs adds, there Catalyst’s Gerry Rolufs, director, order fulfillment was duplication of effort, excess communication, service and distribution, explains, “If you go back to 2003, errors and a lack of transparency. we wanted to improve our customer service and the The approval for the Order Visibility Program came in efficiency of this service as well as reducing our late 2004. The program had three parts: distribution costs. That’s why we undertook the supply • A proof of concept project between late 2004 and chain review.” mid-2005 in which a prototype solution using SAP was to be developed; • To implement a common WMS at the SDC center by mid-2006; • To implement a common WMS at each of Catalyst five mills beginning in Q3 2006. The project began on November 1, 2004 and involved a project team as well as 22 subject matter experts rep- resenting SDC, the Vancouver head office and the four mill
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