AVI Systems Transforms Operations with Solutions360

Published: May 16, 2024
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Nearly ten years ago, AVI Systems, the largest global audiovisual and unified collaboration systems integrator, needed an overarching solution to streamline its processes across various departments. The quest for efficiency led AVI Systems to Solutions360’s flagship platform Q360, a unified enterprise resource planning software designed specifically for integration companies. The all-encompassing system promised not only to simplify complex processes but also to tightly integrate every facet of the company’s business, setting the stage for continued growth and success.

Prior to the transition, the integration firm was using a variety of software that was not integrated across all its departments causing inefficient workflows and data issues. Kendra Apelt, director of business applications at AVI Systems, recalls, “Prior to Q360, we struggled with siloed systems that lacked integration, resulting in inefficiencies and delays in our workflow. We were seeking a platform that could facilitate better collaboration among our teams. Q360’s centralized system allowed us to break down silos and enhance cross-departmental coordination, leading to smoother project execution and improved client satisfaction.”

The Challenge

Finding a new ERP solution for the growing company was more than aligning with the company’s strategic goals; it was also about selecting a partner to help make the transition with them. Apelt recalls, “At the outset, we recognized the need for a solution that could help us break down silos within our organization and drive collaboration across departments. During our evaluation process, we encountered challenges with vendors who required us to define our requirements in detail, despite our uncertainty about what the ideal solution would entail.” She continues, “We knew what aspects of our current processes were not working and what overarching objectives we aimed to achieve, but we lacked the expertise on our team at the time to outline the exact solution. Solutions360 stood out because they understood our industry and business workings and could show us how their software could address our concerns.”

Watch: Solutions360 on Top Tips to Run a Better, More Efficient Business

The Q360 Solution

AVI Systems kick-started with training sessions from Solutions360, supplemented by an AVI process expert, to give users a solid grasp of the software’s capabilities. For years following initial deployment, AVI Systems worked closely with Solutions360’s team of experts to translate their requirements into actionable customization requests. “Overtime we hired developers within our IT department to take on the customization needs. We have an internal workflow to take requests from our business line leaders to the IT team who work on the customizations, with engagement of the Solutions360 team, to customize our environment to support our unique operational requirements,” says Apelt.

Solutions 360 LogoWhat stands out about the Q360 software is its unified database across multiple business functions and the transparency of that data for all users to see. The integrated approach allows AVI Systems to streamline operations and access real-time data across departments, enhancing collaboration and decision-making.

Additionally, AVI Systems leverages the Q360 job costing functionality to understand the true cost of project and service delivery. Understanding each project, contract, or service call helps in the company’s reporting and enhances its decision making.

Currently, the onboarding of new Q360 users is managed in-house, leveraging Solutions360’s training videos, complemented by peer-to-peer support.

Unified Reporting

As a company familiar with both organic growth and expansion through acquisitions, AVI Systems understands the critical role of good data and strong systems in successfully integrating new locations. Acquisitions present a unique challenge as the company merges a distinct business with its own set of processes and data into its Q360.

“We prioritize collaboration with our new employee owners to understand their existing data for integration into our systems. This collaborative approach ensures that we capture essential data elements necessary for effective operations within Q360,” says Apelt.

The growing technology integrator gathers and organizes the acquired data, working closely with Solutions360 to facilitate the data import process. Through coordinated efforts AVI Systems executes the data import within a structured timeline, typically spanning several days. This approach, aligning the data structure with AVI systems, fosters continuity in operations across departments and the newly integrated entities along with having unified reporting. Everything within the Q360 system is real-time giving staff visibility into “one version of the truth” of what is happening from a process and profitability standpoint.

Increased Efficiency

“After we got past our initial transition of launching Q360 we saw the objectives we were looking for take shape with streamlined processes, centralizing data, awareness of routine tasks and standardizing workflows across departments,” says Apelt. She continues, “this resulted in reduced manual effort, minimized errors, and increased efficiency in our day-to-day operations. We have one source of truth for the data, enhancing our reporting needed to support our decision making. With standard reporting from a database that is being updated throughout the day, our employees have information readily available to analyze and collaborate across all of our locations. As our business changes we do add complexity to our data, tasks, and workflows and with that we continue to work through the impact it has on our employees for the ever-evolving way we get our work completed.  Additionally, the ability to customize Q360 to suit our needs has contributed to driving efficiency, collaboration and success within our organization.”

With over 33 locations in the United States and the ability to do business nearly anywhere in the world, AVI Systems’ journey with Solutions360’s flagship platform, Q360, underscores the pivotal role of integrated software solutions in streamlining complex business processes.

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