Success Story: Big Pine Builders Supply

RockSolid Helps Keep Them on Their Game

John Scharch of Big Pine 
John Scharch of Big Pine

John Scharch has been in the hardware business for more than 50 years but he says competition for his store, Big Pine Builders Supply in Big Pine Key, Florida, is fiercer today than it’s ever been. 

Big Pine Key is not a large market. There’s a population of just 6,000 most of the year which swells to nearly 12,000 during the winter months. But Scharch’s store is sandwiched between two Home Depots, both less than a 30-minute drive away. And if that wasn’t enough, there are two other independent operations less than half a mile away to worry about as well. 

When you’re up against competition like that every time you open the doors, there’s little room for sloppy execution. You need disciplined management and a strong business infrastructure to succeed. Fortunately for Scharch and his team, since switching to the RockSolid POS system from ECi Software Solutions in August of 2013, they’ve got both. 

“We’re in the kind of market where you have to be on your game all the time and RockSolid helps us to do just that,” says Scharch. 

“RockSolid has helped us tighten up the information stream on the business and that’s been a big plus,” he reports. “With RockSolid, we can get real-time updates on key business metrics literally with just a couple of mouse clicks and it has helped us improve customer service and our own internal efficiency on multiple levels.” 

Managing inventory and maintaining accounts 

Managing inventory, for example, has become so much easier. Big Pine Builders Supply is a True Value store but somewhere in the region of 10% of its stock comes from other sources. 

“RockSolid interfaces very well with the True Value system and makes it very easy to manage non-True Value inventory,” Scharch says. “Since going live with RockSolid, we’ve been able to get a more precise count on inventory and are probably within 98-99% accuracy today.” 

The benefits are just as impressive on the customer service side of the business. About 25% of Big Pine’s business comes from house accounts, and generating and mailing monthly statements used to be a time-consuming, labor-intensive process. Not any more! 

“RockSolid makes processing statements so much easier and more efficient,” Scharch reports happily. “We don’t need to order special invoice forms any more. Instead, we can now print statements on plain paper and email them to those customers who want them. And keeping track of which customers want emailed statements and which ones want them mailed or faxed is just as easy.” 

Improved customer service with Quick Look Up 

On the service side, RockSolid’s Quick LookUp feature makes it easy for the Big Pine team to help customers track down those not-so-easy-to-find items. 

“If one of our people isn’t sure which particular item a customer is looking for, they can just go into Quick Look Up and track it down by its picture,” Scharch explains. “That’s been a big plus—particularly for our new employees.” 

“An effortless switch and excellent technical support” 

Even for the most tech-savvy companies, moving to a new computer system can be a daunting task but, says Scharch, the changeover could not have gone smoother. “The conversion to RockSolid was very well executed with minimal problems. It was an effortless switch and the technical support RockSolid provided was excellent,” he reports. 

And once RockSolid was up and running, Scharch and his team found learning the system remarkably easy. 

“I’m not an IT person, but with RockSolid, I can usually figure out how to get where I want to on the system without too much trouble,” he says. “RockSolid is very intuitive and user friendly and we find most of our people can pick it up just fine within a couple of days. And if there is something that is a little more complex, the RockSolid technical support team is usually very responsive.” 

RockSolid saves us money 

And if all that wasn’t enough to make Scharch happy about his decision to switch, there’s the small matter of the hard cash savings. 

“Our monthly maintenance with RockSolid comes in at about one-third of what we were paying with our previous system and on top of that, RockSolid is saving us about $1,000 a year just on ink and paper costs as a result of being able to print invoices on plain paper,” he reports. 

The bottom line on RockSolid for John Scharch and his team? “It’s one of the best hardware store management systems I’ve seen,” he says. “RockSolid lets you run the business the way you want to run it and do the job you need to do to take care of the customer. It’s like having an extra person to handle all the behind-the-scenes stuff that nobody sees. And it does it all very economically and efficiently!”