Building Material Distributor Outgrows Acumatica, Chooses NetSuite as the ‘Last ERP We’ll Need’

Mike Stiles, NetSuite Contributor

February 23, 2023


QUICK READ:

  • Delgado Stone manufactures and distributes stone veneer for building projects.
  • The company found its previous system, Acumatica, difficult to use and lacking in reporting.
  • Delgado Stone identified NetSuite ERP as a system it would never outgrow.
  • The team implemented NetSuite seamlessly and saw efficiency gains right out of the box.
  • Now, the controller saves about 30 hours per week on reporting, and the team can generate cost estimates 50% faster.

 

About Delgado Stone Distributors

Delgado Stone(opens in new tab) manufactures and distributes natural stone products to authorized dealers throughout the United States and Canada. Designed for both residential and commercial building projects, its products include over 20 collections of stone veneer used on fireplaces, siding, foundations, and more. Delgado Stone also offers landscape materials including granite, flagstone, and stone steps in a variety of sizes and colors. The company sources 95% of its all-natural, sustainable materials within 150 miles of its two production facilities in Brookfield, Connecticut. It also owns its own quarry, Sterling Tan.

Delgado Stone has seen impressive growth since its founding in 2011. It works with over 100 authorized dealers in 24 states and in Canada, with annual revenues between $10 million and $15 million. The team has more than doubled in size since 2016 — with salespeople handling specific regions and dealers throughout the country — to provide better service to customers.       

Although its products are only available for purchase through its authorized dealer network, Delgado Stone works closely with architects, builders, masons, and homeowners to help ensure they have the right material for their projects. This allows for a smooth process for the customer and the authorized dealer, which is often located closer to the project.

Delgado Stone takes pride in treating employees impeccably well, confident that an incredible employee experience resonates in the quality of both its products and its customer service.

Get an overview of the Delgado Stone story on the NetSuite Podcast:


Acumatica Falls Short Ahead of More Growth

Delgado Stone previously ran an Acumatica ERP system. It wasn't easy to create, run, or drill down into reports, so the controller and finance team constantly pulled data together manually to create reports for leadership and the many salespeople out on the road. Though the Acumatica system was cloud-based, salespeople working remotely found it difficult to use and thus relied on constantly inquiring of the controller, which became downright disruptive. For Delgado Stone, interacting with Acumatica required going through a value-added reseller (VAR), resulting in lots of back and forth and confusing communication.

With plans to continue growing and adding facilities and quarries, Delgado Stone realized its business management system couldn’t go the distance. It needed each team member to be able to operate independently, accessing the information they needed when they needed it.

delgado stone
Delgado Stone owns two production facilities, as well as a stone quarry.


An ERP System for the Long Haul

When looking for a new ERP, Delgado Stone’s primary goal was to find a system it could use forever, so it wouldn’t have to switch systems again. The team wanted a system that constantly incorporated cutting-edge technology and could handle any amount of growth.

Delgado Stone started with a few brand-name ERP systems and quickly narrowed the candidates to NetSuite, SAP, and Abas. The team did plenty of research, watched presentations, and asked some of their customer companies which ERPs they used.

CEO Mike Wolfe said that once the team saw the NetSuite demo, they knew it was the right system for Delgado Stone. His team appreciated NetSuite’s consultative sales process, which was helpful to ensure NetSuite was the right ERP for both the current company and its future growth. The NetSuite team communicated clearly from day one, Wolfe said, then followed through on each promise. This aligned perfectly with one of Delgado Stone’s core company values: staying true to its word and delivering exactly the product and service expected.

To be sure, a new ERP system was going to be an investment. But as Wolfe told his team, the alternative — continuing to pay for a system that only made operations more difficult — wasn’t an option.
 

NetSuite Makes an Impact, Right Out of the Box

The NetSuite implementation team was critical to the project’s success, Wolfe said. They designed a thorough ERP implementation plan(opens in new tab), asked questions, kept a schedule, kept Delgado Stone team members on task, and made it easy. When Delgado Stone had a change of personnel in the controller role right after implementation, the NetSuite team went over everything again with the new controller.

“From day one, NetSuite has walked us through the process of implementing and using the system. From the sales team to our account manager to our implementation team to Advanced Customer Support, they’ve communicated clearly and followed through.”—Mike Wolfe


NetSuite proved more usable than Acumatica right out of the box, Wolfe said. Delgado Stone had to customize about 80% of its Acumatica system, but with NetSuite, it has just begun to explore its first customization four months after go-live. And when more needs arise as Delgado Stone scales, it can tap into the many NetSuite modules(opens in new tab) and integrations offered. Wolfe said that previously, when he’d ask other software vendors if their tools integrated with Acumatica, they’d tell him they were not familiar with that ERP but could look into it.    

“We wanted a system we could jump in and use, then add functionality along the way. NetSuite is impactful right out of the box, but there’s no shortage of modules and integrations.” —Mike Wolfe


Wolfe said the NetSuite name has also added a level of clout and credibility to many of the company’s hiring conversations. When interviewing potential new controllers, for example, few candidates had heard of Acumatica, while many more were familiar with NetSuite.
 

Delgado Stone’s Top Benefits of Switching to NetSuite

Today, Delgado Stone uses the system for:

  • Demand planning
  • Inventory management of both raw materials and completed products
  • Order management
  • Purchasing
  • Cost estimations
  • Invoicing
  • Budget tracking

Overall benefits of switching to NetSuite include:

Communication. The team enjoys working with and getting support from NetSuite directly, instead of going through a VAR like they did with Acumatica.

Quick access to insights. Delgado Stone’s remote salespeople use NetSuite dashboards for easy access to the information they need, so they’re more prepared for customer meetings. 

Ease of use. It’s easy to get new employees up and running on NetSuite, especially compared to Delgado Stone’s former system.

Capacity. Delgado Stone is adding a facility and recently acquired a retail business, both of which it can easily integrate into its NetSuite instance. Going forward, the company can continue expanding with peace of mind that NetSuite can handle whatever projects it takes on.

delgado stone veneer
Delgado Stone uses NetSuite for performance insights on its 20 collections of stone veneer.


Saved Time, Higher Accuracy, and Stronger Support

Specific areas where Delgado Stone sees an especially big difference with NetSuite include:

Reporting. Employees across the business, especially the controller, have saved time and effort on reporting. Now that sales reps have their own easy-to-use dashboards, the controller has about 30 more hours per week to analyze sales data instead of merely delivering it. Automatically generated NetSuite reports also mean the team can create project cost estimates about 50% faster, Wolfe said.

“NetSuite gives us access to data that’s going to fuel growth and allow us to make better decisions. Now, our controller can focus on that instead of spending 30 hours a week building individual reports for our sales team.” —Mike Wolfe


Inventory management. Delgado Stone previously implemented Acumatica’s inventory software but felt the support just wasn’t there. As a result, it resorted to managing inventory in spreadsheets. Taking inventory information from one system and plugging it into another left room for errors that could result in wildly inaccurate stock information.

With NetSuite Inventory Management, the team seamlessly and automatically tracks inventory in real time, enjoying a smoother process than any they’ve had before. This allows them to provide more accurate information to their customers and sales team, which is important as they continue to make customer service a top priority. NetSuite Inventory Management(opens in new tab) also allows the production team to plan and forecast more accurately, cutting down on wasted material and lead times.       

Support. To Wolfe, the most impressive part of NetSuite is the support his team receives. For example, Delgado Stone recently changed banks, which required some advanced setup. The bank wasn’t set up to support scenarios like changing credit cards; imported data wasn’t being allocated to the right account; and reports weren’t laid out how exactly Delgado Stone wanted to see them. Leadership tapped NetSuite Advanced Customer Support(opens in new tab) (ACS) to help. They explained their ideal workflows, and the ACS team either walked them through the necessary changes or made changes for them. ACS also helped train Delgado Stone’s sales team on how to fine-tune and better use NetSuite dashboards.

Education. The Delgado Stone team also uses NetSuite Learning Cloud Support, an online learning resource, to familiarize themselves with the system’s breadth of functionality. As members join the team, those already using NetSuite Learning Cloud Support(opens in new tab) can explain what they’ve learned from the tool and point to particularly helpful training videos in the wide-ranging library. Learning more about the ins and outs of NetSuite helps everyone do their job more effectively, Wolfe said.
 

Delgado Stone’s Rock-Solid Future

Delgado Stone plans to continue adding NetSuite functionality this year: It’s exploring the ability to manage sales team expense reports in NetSuite instead of spreadsheets, as well as the NetSuite Fixed Assets Management(opens in new tab) and NetSuite CRM(opens in new tab) modules. It also wants to keep improving the customer experience by using NetSuite to accept online and ACH payments.

Whatever comes next, having access to rich data from across the business gives the team confidence that they truly understand Delgado Stone’s performance and position in the market, which “makes a big impact on how we operate,” Wolfe said.

“We're focused on efficiency and understanding our business so we can provide better service to our customers and a better place to work for our team. With NetSuite, we've invested in a system that’s going to help us do that exponentially better.” —Mike Wolfe


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