Orchid's DML helps Walther Farms reap the rewards of digitization

The Company

Walther Farms is a 3rd generation family owned business, headquartered in Three Rivers, Michigan. Since starting in the 1940’s with a few acres for vegetable hobby farming they have expanded to have over 12,000 acres of commercial and seed potatoes, grown throughout the United States, for the potato chip and fresh produce markets.

They maintain a family culture with a professional approach to business.

The Challenge

Walther Farms is the epitome of a multi-site business, with a highly mobile workforce. That’s especially so at harvest time, when many of their managers are literally “in the field” for long stretches of time.

If a farm manager had a problem with an invoice, for example, that would mean a phone call to head office.

Someone from accounts would need to look up the Vendor Number, then go searching for the right file, before rifling through it for the relevant document.

The Solution

Josh Reeves, CFO at Walther Farms, was also wearing the hat of IT Director. He could see the potential of embracing digitization and cloud-based applications. Processes were set up to scan source documents into a shared repository as a matter of course.

With their users already having Office 365 licences, SharePoint Online was an obvious choice to form part of their cloud solution. Users no longer needed to be in the office or connected to the VPN – they could now access documents from their smartphone or tablet while in the field. SharePoint also provided the peace of mind of automatic backup, version control etc.

Their Sage solution provider, DataQuest, showed Josh how Orchid’s Document Management Link (DML) could provide the missing link – tight integration with their Sage 300 ERP system. For example, a scanned invoice could be dragged and dropped directly into the A/P Invoice Entry screen. The invoice would then be presented to any user who subsequently brought up a Sage 300 screen referencing that Vendor and/or Document Number.

The Result

Those users in the field can now easily locate and view the supporting documentation they need themselves, without having to call head office and ask for help from Accounting. 

While Walther Farms started using Document Management Link with Accounts Payable, Josh can see the day when almost every screen in Sage 300 will have supporting documents of some sort associated and accessible via DML.  

I love the fact that you can take any screen in Sage 300 and upload a document, be it an image, or an Excel spreadsheet, or a Word document, then manage it from within Sage 300.  That’s way better than having something stuck out on a shared drive, where you can never remember what you called it when the auditors come knocking!

Josh has no doubt that that the extra step of scanning documents will more than pay for itself, thanks to less time running around searching for information that has been filed away. It will also reduce the need for physical storage.

As we get more and more documents into the digitized systems we can get rid of a lot of the filing cabinets that are taking up real estate in our office!

“I love the fact that you can take any screen in Sage 300 and upload a document, then manage it from within Sage 300.”

Josh Reeves
CFO, Walther Farms


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