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The Client

Carpet Barn & The Bedstore is a family run, independent business with over 35 years’ experience and expertise offering a wide range of carpets, rugs, flooring, beds, mattresses and furniture. They also specialise in other floor coverings including vinyl, laminate, wood, natural floorings, safety flooring, linoleum, matting and carpet tiles. Carpet Barn & The Bedstore service the South Coast with stores in Poole, Ferndown, Eastleigh and Fareham.

The Brief

Carpet Barn & The Bedstore manage and schedule jobs for fitters, estimators and delivery vans and also have the flexibility to manage and share staff across multiple stores. They previously used a manual process, which consisted of a combination of paper diaries, spreadsheets and paper forms for their internal scheduling system. Each scheduling diary was handled independently at each store and other stores could not see each other’s diaries or schedules, which led to lots of phone calls between each store to share booking information.

Their previous processes had the following disadvantages:

  • No direct access for other stores to view other stores’ schedules
  • No backup of schedules, only a single copy exists
  • Hand-written notes and edits quickly became untidy and could be misread
  • Impossible to analyse historical data
  • No log of who has made changes
  • Drivers had to be notified of changes by phone
  • Estimators had to visit the store to get summary of day’s visits
  • Stores did not see live status of driver’s progress.

Realising the deficiencies in their scheduling procedures and wanting to streamline and modernise their processes, Carpet Barn & The Bedstore looked into a number of existing off-the-shelf scheduling systems but could not find anything suitable.

They had previously invested in an ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) system that managed stock, ordering and invoicing. One key requirement was to avoid duplication of customer details, which were already being stored in the existing ERP system. The Solution Following consultation with Carpet Barn & The Bedstore owners, B4B proposed that their in-house software specialists developed a cloud-based scheduling and diary system called Apps In The Cloud, which would offer booking and scheduling diaries for fitters, estimators and delivery vans across multiple stores and would allow all stores to view all store diaries. B4B offered customisation and delivered a bespoke solution, integrating with the ERP system over a web-based interface to retrieve all customer details and delivery addresses relating to jobs, thus addressing the key issue of data duplication and double data entry. The Result Store personnel now have access to other stores’ diaries and have the flexibility to re-allocate staff across stores when needed. Staff availability is also managed across all stores so that it is easy to ensure staff are not double-booked.

Scheduling Diary

Scheduling Diary

Fitter Availability

Fitter Availability

Estimators no longer have to visit the stores each morning to print out their daily schedule and when out in the field, they have remote access to their diary via a portal on their tablet device. They can complete estimation forms online and upload photos and documents from their tablet devices. They can also update the running order of their day’s schedule, update estimation information and status of their surveys remotely.

The fitter’s diary allows the skillset of each fitter to be configured, so that a job can only be booked to a fitter with the necessary skills for the job.

Fitter’s Daily Diary

Fitters Daily Diary

The delivery van diary facilitates scheduling delivery of goods to customers and between stores. The van drivers also have a portal to remotely update the delivery status of a job such as ‘delivered’ or ‘delivery failed’. Like the estimators, they have remote access to their daily delivery schedule and have the flexibility to alter their day’s running order if needed whilst out on the road.

Client Testimonial

“After several attempts at trying to source an off-the-shelf system to manage our diaries and customer details, we approached Bespoke 4 Business, our existing digital marketing agency, to create a bespoke solution tailored to our exact requirements.

Having explained exactly what we needed, we had regular interaction with B4B to ensure the project was progressing according to our expectations and after just 3 months, we were presented with a bespoke system that’s easy to use yet has all the funtionality we requested – all with on-going support should we need it.

It really has transformed the way in which we now book jobs and organise our fitters, estimators and delivery vans. Being able to view diaries from other stores is particularly beneficial as we can now maximise our staff availability and can offer customers even quicker delivery and installation appointments. I would highly recommend B4B to any company looking for a management or diary system tailored to their specific requirements.”

Darren Ironside, Director, Carpet Barn & The Bedstore

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