About Switchtec

Switchtec, founded in 1982 by the present Director’s father, started out in a converted stable in Alton. Currently a leading specialist in the supply of electronic components, Switchtec provides over 7,000 product lines for immediate dispatch.

Did you know: more than 35 years ago, Alan Lester started the company after being made redundant. He had loyal customers who, before the ease of the internet, rang him and trusted him for his knowledge of the market and his manufacturer contacts. The company began in his cupboard, grew to the garage and moved to a converted stable, before moving to the current address in Staffordshire in 1995

Number of Employees: 14

Partnered with OGL since: 2005

Company Location: Staffordshire

Company Website: www.switchtec.com

Switchtec reduces manual processes with OGL Software and eShop

Switchtec has steady growth in their future plans and they needed to be sure they had a well-developed system to support them and their growing customer and product base. Before OGL Software, the company used a bespoke, outdated software with a separate CRM that left them still carrying out very manual processes. “One of the biggest reasons we bought OGL Software was because all the modules were integrated, including CRM, accounts, purchasing and now the website.”

OGL Software has made Switchtec more efficient in many areas of the business, including purchasing: “We used to print and manually go through all purchase orders line by line. It was a full-time job because it was so labour intensive. But now, with OGL Software, we have streamlined the process, automated a lot and the role is now part time.”

“OGL Software has made us more efficient in many areas, which frees time up to do other things. “

Implementing an eCommerce website was a big move for Switchtec, but after seeing potential in their eBay account and wanting a newly designed website anyway, “we haven’t looked back. We’re not setting the world on fire but it’s a part of the business we couldn’t be without. We have a minimum order value over the phone of £25, so we often have smaller orders going through the site because there isn’t that restriction. This is because the order is automatically processed, and a picking list is simply delivered to the warehouse team which cuts out the admin work.”

Their eCommerce website also allows them to provide better customer service: “If we have a customer on the phone who is unsure of the exact product they’re trying to order, we direct them to a product page on the website, which has the relevant datasheet attached, and ask ‘Is this what you’re looking for?’ This gives the customer peace of mind that they’ve ordered the correct item, which in turn reduces returns and extra administration.”

“Stock is everything and for us as a distributor, the stock management module is great.”

Switchtec also run a successful eBay account, “and now it’s integrated to OGL Software it works so much better because it removes the manual admin. We were worried about growing the eBay account because of the increase in admin, but OGL Software has made it easy to grow that account and we don’t look back.” The eBay account has also been a great marketing and branding tool for them. Customers have come directly to them once they’ve realised they’re a fully scaled business after seeing them listed on eBay. Having a multi-channel selling technique has allowed Switchtec to keep selling to their customers in more ways than one, keeping them happy and wanting to return.

Ultimately, stock is at the heart of Switchtec and in order for them to continue to expand their portfolio and grow in the UK, they needed an ERP software that connects all business processes and allows them to run efficiently. “For us as a distributor, stock is everything and the stock management module is great. The way you can extract information to run stock reports is probably my favourite feature. The stock module handles perpetual stock checks, reports, dispatching and more, so the system is perfect for distributors as a whole.”

See Switchtec's case study in the media: 

A Little Bit of Stone - Switchtec invests in new IT systems and online store to boost growth

Infotechlead - IT deals: Applied DNA, WNS, EdgePresence, Switchtec

Electronic Specifier - Electromechanical provider boosts sales growth

Business Live - Staffordshire's Switchtec boosts growth with online store and IT upgrade

The Sentinel - Living the electric dream: July print edition 

Stoke on Trent Live - This North Staffordshire business is on track for a record year (thanks to an IT upgrade and the opening of an online store!)

Controls, Drives & Automation - Switchtec boosts growth

Electrical Digest - Switchtec boosts growth with online sales and business processes overhaul

Electrical Wholesaler - August print edition 

“I would definitely recommend OGL Software without a doubt, the system is perfect for distributors as a whole. For stock handling it’s great and at the end of the day, if you have products that can relate to a product number then it’ll work for them.”

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