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Syntacxt, a clinical research company working with medical device and pharmaceutical businesses, had plans for growth but wanted to make sure they could do so while still maintaining quality and excellent customer service. They chose SAP Business One in order to support this growth and give them the rigor they needed across departments. 

Single, integrated system for the business

Fully auditable system

Increased efficiency across the business

Scalable platform to support growth

About Syntactx

Founded in 2010 and headquartered in New York City, Syntactx started out as a family-owned business and has quickly grown into a leading Contract Research Organisation (CRO). It delivers a variety of services tailored to the needs of its clients, taking clinical trials from product inception through market introduction and post-market studies. In addition to its in-house team of experts, Syntactx fosters strategic partnerships with clinicians, academic and non-academic institutions, and regulatory agencies.

Why SAP Business One?

Clinical trials are vital to the testing and evaluation of new drugs, devices and treatments for diseases, or to find preventative interventions. As a full-service CRO, Syntactx designs and executes clinical research trials for medical device, pharmaceutical and diagnostic laboratory clients. Within its first eight years, the company’s workforce had swelled from two employees to more than a hundred, and the business was operating in 35 countries across three continents. Syntactx was ranked 241st in the 2015 Inc. 500 list of the fastest-growing private companies in America. 

As Chief Operating Officer, David Ouriel, explains, “By 2014, we were starting to hit the limitations of our accounting software. We’d reached the point where we had a good understanding of our profitability and customer and vendor relationships, but we lacked really granular business insight and a customisable view of our data. We also agreed that the financial rigor and credibility of a fully-fledged ERP solution would only increase an eventual investor’s comfort and confidence. We chose SAP Business One as its reputation is far superior to that of competing offerings, with references across industries and geographies, and support for multiple currencies. It could also be easily integrated with other SAP deployments if we were ever to enter into a partnership or joint venture in future.”

Sapphire carried out implementation of SAP Business One, including customisation to Syntactx’ specific requirements, and the migration of customer, vendor and sales data, and the solution went live in January 2015. 

The Benefits

Today, data from a multitude of different systems across the organisation flows through SAP Business One, centralising analysis and enabling insights to be delivered rapidly and reliably across the business. The solution also generates all the documentation necessary to speed through annual audits – a crucial advantage in this highly-regulated industry. 

According to David, “One of the key areas of functionality that we were looking to benefit from was the ability to understand individual departments or service lines. We have nine in total and each operates in an almost standalone manner, so being able to get that level of detailed reporting was a significant leap for us.”

“Our Finance and Accounting team has also dramatically changed shape since we went live. We’ve been able to shift from a transactional focus to more complex, strategic activities. The beauty of SAP Business One is that you can query the underlying database to respond to ad hoc information requests that can’t be satisfied with pre-configured reports. We can access and extract data as easily as you would with any SQL database, which gives us remarkable flexibility.”

Syntactx is currently progressing a project to bring increased rigor to its approval processes. “If you’re approving invoices for payment, or sending invoices to clients, accuracy is absolutely critical in this business – anything that’s incorrect could be detrimental to our reputation. With such rapid growth, manual approvals are becoming too burdensome for any single person or department, so we’re currently figuring out how best to automate this workflow in SAP Business One. Another project in the pipeline is an integration to enable the bi-directional flow of information between SAP Business One and our customer relationship management platform. This will not only save time on data entry and processing, but also minimise human error.” 

With standardised, repeatable processes and best practices, Syntactx is now equipped to scale and expand its global reach efficiently and consistently. “We’ve been thrilled with SAP Business One,” admits David. “It’s allowed us to more effectively manage the business and pursue our vision.”  

Working with Sapphire

“Our choice of Sapphire as our partner for implementation and beyond came down to their people: we were highly impressed with everyone we met. SAP Business One is a fantastic foundation but it’s not a simple case of plug-and-play. While it’s highly customisable, you have to make some decisions during the initial deployment about how to adapt it to your specific business processes and needs. That means evaluating alternatives and plotting the best path forward, so it’s important that your implementation partner has a really sophisticated grasp of the software’s capabilities and a thorough understanding of your requirements, to help you navigate that journey with confidence.”

“As a global partner, Sapphire provides round-the-clock local support to match our operational footprint. Their priority from day one was to really understand our business and use case, and help us meet our objectives – from streamlining compliance to maintaining the high quality client service for which we’re known amid exponential growth.” concludes David.

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