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Overview

Kevin Squires, Financial Accountant, explained the requirement to upgrade: "Essentially our hardware had outgrown our software. We hadn't upgraded SunSystems as it worked well for us and there were no failings in the system. When the need to upgrade our hardware arose we also took the opportunity to look at all our software packages and decided to upgrade SunSystems at the same time."

Journal reversals and automated transfer desk

Export management reports more quickly

Simple to use and quick to train user on the system

Reduced manual processes

Objective 

The company already had Infor SunSystems but wanted to upgrade to improve the efficiency of the system, and make it more streamlined for the company.

Solution

Infor SunSystems 5.4.1 / upgrade

Organisation

Townends is a dynamic and highly successful chain of estate agents operating primarily in London, Surrey and Middlesex with a growing presence in Berkshire and Hampshire. As well as residential sales and lettings and management, the company is also able to offer conveyancing, land and new homes and overseas properties to its customers. Townends Estate Agents form part of the Badger Holdings group of property specialists, which also includes Regents Estate Agents, Tyser Greenwood Surveyors and .dot financial services.

Background to the case

Kevin Squires, Financial Accountant, explained the requirement to upgrade: "Essentially our hardware had outgrown our software. We hadn't upgraded SunSystems as it worked well for us and there were no failings in the system. When the need to upgrade our hardware arose we also took the opportunity to look at all our software packages and decided to upgrade SunSystems at the same time."

The goal of the project was to improve efficiencies: "We were looking to be more streamlined in the way we operate" explained Kevin, "Team numbers reduced during the recession and people are more focused".

The upgrade

"Once we had decided to upgrade we wanted it to take place pretty quickly and Sapphire was very helpful in accommodating it" said Kevin. The whole process went very smoothly and everything was completed as discussed and agreed. The upgrade took six weeks from initial stage through to sign off, though it had been planned to take place over a longer period of time. "

From the initial meeting with our Account Manager and Project Manager, to my constant demands on rearranging dates to take advantage of how well the process was going, I have been constantly impressed with the whole upgrade process and the professionalism of the Sapphire team. The initial scope filled me with dread and in truth I kept expecting something to fail. I was delighted to get to the stage where we could trial the system with not so much as a hiccup and was ecstatic with the results that came through with all reports and systems working as intended!" said Kevin.

He went on to say "Finishing the project over three weeks ahead of schedule can only be put down to the professional approach and dedication of the staff at Sapphire – their Technical Consultant even worked until after eight o'clock one night ensuring that everything was working. With Sapphire's Application Consultant on site it has given us renewed vigour to start utilising SunSystems to a greater level and we will be calling on his services (diary permitting) in the near future to enable us to become even more efficient after this upgrade."

What's new and what are the benefits?

The team at Townends have taken advantage of enhanced functionality in SunSystems v5.4, for example with the transfer desk, which helps with corporate allocations.

Kevin stated "There is some new functionality that is beneficial such as journal reversals and the automated transfer desk. Plus, the new version is more user friendly. I am pleased to report that everything is working as expected. We had a couple of minor teething issues, but that didn't slow us down."

Now that SunSystems 5.4 is up and running the Finance Team at Townends has been able to bring end-of-month forward by a whole day and are able to get management reporting out in a more timely manner: "Everything is done that little bit quicker which helps loads of people throughout the whole organisation" commented Kevin.

"As a finance person, for me, one of the best things about SunSystems – especially following our upgrades - is how quick everything is. It is extremely simple to use and new users pick it up quickly with no dramas. I wouldn't go back to using anything else now."

Working with Sapphire

Sapphire's Support Team is "as ever, always there" said Kevin, "We are always happy with the service we receive from the support team and Sapphire overall. Dealings are very simple and Sapphire is a very efficient company. If and when things change it is easy to get in touch and they help out."

To others considering an upgrade Kevin simply says "It needs to be done. Sapphire makes everything as smooth as possible; it was a joy to run through."

Kevin finished by saying "I would recommend Sapphire for the personal service they provide; we are very well looked after."

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