TiCom ERP + SIPal, 2 solutions - 1 provider

Overlaid text "Testimonial, Södra Wood Långasjö" over background with forklift and wooden packages, Södra branded.
TiCom ERP and SIPal parcel logistics in use at Södra Wood in Långasjö, Sweden.

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The complete digital package for the sawmill and timber industry

Timbertec, Eutin/DE, has been a leader in the timber ERP market for many decades. With the recent acquisition of Datapolarna, Timbertec has added SIPal to its ERP product range. This tool also makes it possible to optimize the entire parcel logistics and forklift traffic. As a user of both solutions, customer Södra is enthusiastic about the resulting synergies.

Text and image: Raphael Kerschbaumer, Holzkurier issue 47, 23.11.2023; and TimberTec

"Before we integrated SIPal into our company for the first time, we couldn't make the search for the right parcels as efficient as we would have liked. This is now a thing of the past," Mattias Holmqvist, responsible for logistics at Södra Wood Långasjö, opens the interview with Holzkurier in southern Sweden, at one of eight sawmill locations of the Swedish timber industry Södra.
"However, there are often challenges between different software solutions, especially at the respective interfaces. With the full integration of SIPal into TiCom, we no longer have to worry about this," continues Holmqvist and Erik Petersson, Consultant at TimberTec, adds: "Thanks to the TimberTec acquisition of DataPolarna, we can now also offer the long-established logistics solution SIPal, which has been widely used primarily in the Nordic countries, together with TiCom. For our customers, this means two solutions in one. No more interfaces and therefore a fully comprehensive system integration of all processes relevant to success in parcel logistics."

Key factor IT

Södra is one of Sweden's largest forestry and timber industries with a softwood lumber production of around 2 million m3/year. "IT is one of the key areas for a company to operate successfully on the global market today. Software solutions are essential in order to operate profitably in the long term. In addition to a fully comprehensive ERP system, this also includes the integration and optimization of all internal logistics," says Johanna Lindén, CFO and IT Manager at Södra Wood, and continues: "Looking back, we are very happy with the decision to switch our ERP systems to Ticom. Timbertec always strives to generate the best output for its customers. They come from the timber industry and are very familiar with it. This is a great advantage when working with an ERP system in a sector as specific as ours."

Success stories that go beyond business

In 2018, Södra began to gradually standardize the IT and ERP systems of its entire sites (see Holzkurier issue 03/21, p.16-17; TiCom at 19 sites at Södra). On Södra's side, Hanna Johansson has been involved in the Timbertec project from the very beginning. After the successful implementation of TiCom, she took over the management of quality assurance and is now Product Owner of TiCom within Södra. "I work with TimberTec almost every day. It now almost feels like we are one team and not two separate companies," says Johansson proudly about the long-standing collaboration with
TimberTec.

No more free rides

Stacker with timber packages at Södra.

The direct route: thanks to RFID technology, the forklift driver finds the right storage space immediately.

Stacker interior equipped with monitor for SIPal software.

Visualization: On the screens in the forklift cab, the driver can see at a glance where his next order is located.

Södra has also been working with the internal logistics software SIPal for years. For Lindén, this results in a number of advantages: "Firstly, the working environment within the forklift truck is significantly improved by using SIPal. The tool also helps us to exchange data within our sites and makes this process much easier. Previously, our day-to-day work consisted of a lot of manual paperwork. This solution not only had great potential for error, but also took a lot of time." "Time in which the forklift drivers can now process new orders or be deployed elsewhere. With all these optimizations, internal logistics can be made up to 20% more efficient," explains Petersson. This is made possible by a sophisticated sender-receiver system. Every parking space at Södra is fitted with an RFID tag in the floor. As soon as the forklift truck approaches a parking space, the system immediately knows where it is located. This is visualized using a digital map based on a real image of the location on a display integrated in each forklift cabin. This means that the forklift driver not only knows exactly where he is, but also where his next destination or order is. Södra is already working on expanding the use of the system: "Our colleagues are really very satisfied with the solution. Thanks to the seamless integration of SIPal into TiCom, we are already working on an implementation for the other locations," says Johansson and continues: "Instead of two, we now have one contact person for both systems. This not only improves the mutual integration of the systems immensely, but also makes our communication much easier."

Speaks the language of its customers

At TimberTec, this is not only the case in a figurative sense. The acquisition of Datapolarna has also enabled the company to significantly increase its local presence in the Nordic countries and now has two Swedish-speaking service locations in Växjö and Skellefteå.
"This is a huge advantage for us. Communication with each other is essential for the success of the entire project. Language naturally plays an important role in this," explains Johansson. Petersson, who traveled from Växjö, adds: "At Timbertec, we always want to be as close to our customers as possible. This is the only way we can offer and guarantee the level of service that we stand for and that our customers appreciate about us. With locations in Sweden, Germany and Austria, we have a very broad base here and, as part of the GENII Group, we also have the necessary size and capacity behind us to be able to supply the market with the best possible solutions."

Pursuing a common goal: Erik Petersson, TimberTec Consultant, Hanna Johansson, TiCom Product Owner at Södra, Mattias Holmqvist, Logistics at Södra, and Michael Niedermair, Marketing Manager at TimberTec (from left)

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