Oliver Packaging Applies AI to Infor CloudSuite Industrial to Help Provide Critical Food Supplies

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Infor®, the industry cloud company, today announced that Oliver Packaging & Equipment Co. — a leading manufacturer of premium food equipment and meal packaging systems — is leveraging its integrated Infor CloudSuite Industrial and artificial intelligence (AI) solution to help provide critical food supplies to senior meals programs (including Meals on Wheels America), healthcare organizations, schools, grocery stores and more.

The integrated solution enabled Oliver Packaging, headquartered in Walker (Grand Rapids), Michigan, to optimize its inventory 30 times faster while boosting customer and employee satisfaction.

“The pandemic created greater demand for packaged meals, combined with supply chain challenges,” said Mitch Summerfield, president of Oliver Packaging. “With Infor CloudSuite Industrial in place, we were able to meet these challenges and improve our business significantly across the board — margins, NPS (Net Promoter Score), on-time delivery, and employee satisfaction. Now, with Coleman AI integrated into some of our key processes, we can stretch them even further simply because we’re able to better project what products we need.”

With customer purchase patterns continually changing, Oliver Packaging knew there had to be a better way to detect these changes so that the right products were delivered at the right time — to improve the bottom line and customer experience.

Leveraging integrated Infor Coleman AI services with Infor CloudSuite Industrial, Oliver Packaging implemented anomaly detection algorithms to identify abnormal customer orders and amounts quickly and more accurately. Daily processing of these anomalies, using machine learning, is delivered to the Oliver Packaging team in a user-friendly dashboard, where it reviews and analyzes the variances for sales and operations to make critical, real-time business decisions.

Implemented in less than 90 days, the AI solution has helped Oliver Packaging realize the following business benefits, in addition to optimizing its inventory 30 times faster to keep pace with shifting customer demand:

  • 90 percent reduced employee workload in identifying customer order anomalies
  • $1.3 million in revenue variance (across 15 percent of its customers, where the ordered amount was less or more than normal) identified in just two months
  • Lower costs by reducing the need to ship more expensive, alternative solutions or to expedite delivery when the right item is not in stock
  • Better customer retention, with sales able to quickly contact customers to address new requirements
  • Improved customer satisfaction by providing the right product instead of shipping alternative solutions

Oliver Packaging could implement the solution in less than 90 days because the Infor OS technology platform enabled the company to automate the process of collecting, analyzing and consuming data. Customer orders from Infor CloudSuite Industrial are automatically collected and managed in the Infor Data Lake, with integrated services to build, deploy and consume AI-driven insights. The Infor OS platform includes tools for data integration, data management, reporting and analytics, and enterprise performance management, as well as tools for machine learning and AI solutions, so that Oliver Packaging can deploy data-driven applications in weeks instead of months.

As a data-driven company, Oliver Packaging has been closely tracking the company’s return on investment in moving to the cloud with Infor CloudSuite Industrial.

“Every ERP integration has its challenges, but what’s critical is ensuring that you have the right partner with industry expertise to work through those issues,” Summerfield said. “We now have a system that has greatly improved our operations, and we’ve seen significant margin improvement simply because we’re able to better project what products we need. This company is light years from where it was four years ago.”

Four years ago, Oliver Packaging worked with Infor and its implementation partner, Decision Resources, Inc. (DRI), to move to the cloud. Since then, both customers and employees are happier because customers can get the right products at the right time and employees can take advantage of the operational efficiencies now in place. This has resulted in Oliver Packaging achieving:

  • A 55 percent increase in on-time deliveries
  • A 15-point increase in its Net Promoter Score (NPS)
  • A 15-point increase in employee engagement

Watch this video to see how Infor CloudSuite Industrial with Infor Coleman AI is helping Oliver Packaging optimize inventory via anomaly detection and forecasting, while improving customer service, productivity and margins.

Learn more about Infor enterprise artificial intelligence solutions.

Learn more about Infor purpose-built ERP solutions for industrial manufacturing.