Prangl, a crane and working platform rental company, has introduced Microsoft Dynamics AX and the industry solution Sycor.Rental. The company now benefits from standardized and more efficient processes – and has laid the groundwork for further growth by launching its new ERP system.
"Sales, our day-to-day business, making money... all that has worked very well from day one," says Christian Prangl, Chairman and CEO of Prangl. "When you carry out such a significant implementation for the first time in your company's history, you naturally feel a bit uneasy. How will it be on the first day? Will we be able to deliver our equipment at all? With our launch of Microsoft Dynamics AX and Sycor.Rental, everything worked like a charm."
Prangl, founded in 1965, specializes in the renting of mobile cranes, working platforms, and telescopic handlers, as well as in special transport and heavy-duty shipments. "Moving people and loads is our business," says Christian Prangl. "In doing so, we rely on single-provider safety, flexibility, fast response times, and project management. Staff with optimal qualifications and state-of-the-art equipment are part of our strategy." This strategy has proved successful: in 2009, Prangl was named the best family-run business in the Austrian province of Lower Austria. With a fleet of 3,000 vehicles, the company generates sales of around 100 million euros today, and has firmly established itself in the ranks of the top ten European crane companies. Currently, Prangl has 700 employees in 20 locations in Austria, and in six other countries.
"When you carry out such a significant implementation for the first time in your company's history, you naturally feel a bit uneasy. How will it be on the first day? Will we be able to deliver our equipment at all? With our launch of Microsoft Dynamics AX and Sycor.Rental, everything worked like a charm."
Christian Prangl, Managing Partner, Prangl
"Our IT solutions and systems were no longer up to the job, given the developments in recent years. Our branch offices worked with stand-alone solutions, they weren't part of the network, which is crucial to timely enterprise control. The status quo didn't meet our quality requirements, nor was it compatible with the size of our fleet," says Mr. Prangl, the company's Chairman and CEO, when listing the reasons behind the search for a new ERP solution. Accordingly, the objectives pursued in the introduction of the system were quite ambitious: the first thing Christian Prangl wanted to achieve with the software was the mapping and standardization of the core rental processes, as well as to bring together all other corporate processes in a single system. "This meant, of course, that we had to link all locations to the network, and increase efficiency," he adds. This was to set aside enough time to focus on what was essential: calling and meeting with customers, as well as working out ways to improve internal processes. But the system was also supposed to support the control of business operations through a broad data base and analytical functions. "Since we wanted to create added value for our users immediately, and give them the necessary tools to work faster and more easily, opting for Microsoft Dynamics AX and Sycor.Rental was the logical outcome," says Christian Prangl assuredly. Microsoft Dynamics AX, as a full-fledged, sophisticated ERP solution with the familiar Microsoft Office interface, was a convincing choice, while Sycor.Rental was seen as the best industry solution in functional terms for the renting of mobile goods. "What is more, both solutions come with powerful intercompany functions. They are also very flexible and scalable."
The key challenges posed by the project were the mapping of varied processes and the integration of all Austrian locations. Bastian Peter, project manager at SYCOR GmbH, describes: "The processes in the crane and working-platform rental businesses are very different. Cranes are rented with the proper qualified staff and special equipment, and billing is based on staff time recording. This is more complex, and differs substantially from the renting of working platforms." The new ERP solution from Sycor does not only support the central leasing processes of Prangl, but also the planning and execution of transports to deliver the rental goods, as well as the planning and execution of heavy-duty shipments and special transports. There are also functions for workshop and service, billing, and financial accounting. "In this context, we have implemented additional adjustments to the intercompany processes and developed special input masks for internal orders and contracts, so that the system is better fit for the customer," explains Bastian Peter.
"The end result is that our whole business is run using Sycor.Rental – with strong support from DispoControl, the graphic scheduling tool. This has given us a much better overview in the scheduling of our large fleet, ensuring improved deliveries to our customers," says company owner Christian Prangl happily. He believes that the implementation of the system has created a very solid foundation on which the company can build further. "What matters to me is that we don't just stop, but continue developing the program further." His overall conclusion is positive: "The cooperation with Sycor has worked very well. It was very much focused on objectives. Implementing Microsoft Dynamics AX and Sycor.Rental was the right decision. We've been able to realize our goals and expectations. It has paid off, and I believe it was productive and good for both sides."