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One of the key challenges of being a hard-charging dynamic business is ensuring that your business solutions are able to keep pace. As investment and mindshare are focused on growing the business and landing opportunities, business systems get left behind and begin hindering the growth they should be enabling. And as companies expand, merge, and acquire their way toward success, the challenge just becomes more critical and convoluted.

It’s at this stage that really dynamic businesses can turn a challenge into an opportunity by taking a holistic look at their business systems, infrastructure and processes, and transform a limiting factor into a driving force. US-based New Sunshine had just such a cloud gathering over their business, but chose to pursue the proverbial silver lining. 

New Sunshine manufactures and sells tanning lotions, tanning beds, and software to help run salons. With dynamic business growth fired by significant acquisitions, New Sunshine was fast outpacing its ageing and disparate business solutions (including Microsoft Business Solutions–Axapta 3.0 in many locations). Where others would see a challenge, new Sunshine saw opportunity. An opportunity to save money and improve the efficiency of its IT operations through upgrade, consolidation, standardization, and optimization.

Through a single tightly-run migration and upgrade project – that was kept on track and driven to completion with Microsoft Dynamics’ Sure Step methodology – New Sunshine completed a centralized implementation of Microsoft Dynamics AX 2009. By migrating all of its business groups to a single centralized implementation, New Sunshine eliminated annual software-licensing costs of around U.S.$40,000 for other solutions, as well as substantially reducing its server infrastructure from 110 physical servers to just 5, running 60 virtual servers. The new implementation also allowed New Sunshine to replace 40% of existing customized functionality with standard functionality and to reduce its ongoing development costs by more than 50 percent.

But efficiencies and cost-savings in the application itself were only half the story. New Sunshine seized the opportunity to standardize business processes across the organization, and to connect the new ERP solution with critical business systems for shipping, address validation, tax services, and EDI. All of which are now enabling employees to accomplish tasks with greater simplicity, speed and efficiency.

Now New Sunshine has a consolidated solution that is constantly adding value to the business because it is as dynamic as the business itself. The solution is also far easier to maintain and to update, so New Sunshine can take advantage of business and technology opportunities as they arise – like their recent upgrade to Microsoft Dynamics AX 2009 Service Pack 1, that was completed by a handful of staff in just three weeks.

You can read the full case study here.

Ross Thorpe

Microsoft Dynamics ERP Product Marketing

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