Founded in 1980, American Image produces custom international awards and wayfinding signage for major companies, including Coldwell Banker, Century 21, Dale Carnegie, and many other firms worldwide. The company’s individualized approach to every project creates exceptional solutions that customers love but makes for a challenging manufacturing and shipping environment.
American Image needed a technology partner with the ability to configure their ERP to work with their business model. Many processes hadn’t evolved since the company was founded with a telephone book and an idea; too much of the business was handled manually rather than automated.
Software as Customized as American Image’s Business
American Image selected Acumatica; however, a rough implementation effort left the company needing customizations.
“We’re not in business to sell products,” said John Paragian, President of American Image. “We are in the business of solving problems. We had the right software solution but had not found the partner that could tailor it to our needs.”
The scale and scope of work that American Image provides is staggering in its complexity.
“An order for us may be 6,000 customized products,” John explained. “Each product is unique and delivered to hundreds of locations. Our system needed to work with the nuances of our business.”
The Right Partner—An Essential Ingredient to Success
American Image met Mindover Software and immediately knew they had found their partner. “The Mindover team shares the same values and the same commitment to understanding my business as I feel we share with our customers,” said John. “They understood our problem and the scale and the scope of work we provide.”
Mindover Software’s President, Lloyd Smith commented, “Acumatica does everything that American Image needed. Because of this robust solution we were able to focus on the analytics and provide greater breadth and depth of reporting as well as streamlining processes.”
Data Visibility Propels Growth
A huge benefit came from data visibility. Reporting capabilities evolved beyond the typical shipping process.
“The system is so well customized that if a customer calls me and wants to know where one specific item is, and there are 600 items in an order, I can find the location and status of a single item in 30 seconds,” John explained.
“Mindover was able to do what nobody else had done,” John said. “With visibility in manufacturing, purchasing, production, and projections comes growth. Our sales team can identify customer trends and volumes. The new system has turbo charged customer services’ ability to look up data and respond with much greater immediacy.”
“Acumatica lets us parse data in ways that would have been unthinkable years ago,” said John. “The way we can view information, find it quickly and easily, and respond to our customers is helping our business grow.”
Small Business Competes with Big Business in Pandemic
The customized version of Acumatica supported strong revenue growth for American Image despite the global pandemic.
“In a season of survival, we actually grew when others were losing. Automation propelled company growth. We used to operate with 25-30 people on the shop floor; now we have 12-15, thanks to Mindover Software.
“Our competitive advantage remains steady, commented John. “We do business with top brands, with very few staff. You can’t do what we do with the size of our team if your system is not functioning at a high level.”
Systems That Play Nice Together: Multi-Cloud Applications
American Image needed several applications to operate together in the cloud. Getting four applications to synchronize and share data was what kept American Image from going back to where they started, manually reviewing and processing orders.
“Mindover has modernized our hardware and software infrastructure and moved us to the cloud where possible. They have integrated software with additional applications for taxes, shipping, and website integration. There’s so much that they did right with this project, and it’s helping us in many ways.”
Mindover Software was able to resolve the issues that prevent the cloud applications from communicating. The result: a cloud-based system that ran smoothly. Now, American Image had the data it needed in one system without the manual intervention needed in the first iteration.
More Success on the Horizon
Looking ahead, American Image is working with Mindover on the next phase of ERP automation. “We are taking the system from passive to proactive,” “John explained. The goal is to drive key data to us every day. By innovating our approach with daily data, we will improve customer deliverables, allowing management to better manage demand.”
“Mindover Software is the best in the business,” commented John. “They have allowed us to increase profitability by decreasing costs and expanding capacity without significant additional investment. Based on their past experience dealing with sophisticated financial models, we have full trust in their team. Because of this trust and their deep understanding of not only ERP but our business, we get a full solution that is helping us be successful.”