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Fiona McGuinness15-Sep-2021 08:35:354 min read

JT Atkinson appoint Intact as their new business software partner to support future growth plans and augment their competitive advantage

In the coming months, JT Atkinson, one of the UK’s leading merchants, is set to roll out Intact iQ merchant ERP software across its network of 30 branches in the North of England, 2 warehouses and 2 online stores.

JT Atkinson’s investment in Intact iQ will augment their focus on operational excellence and provide greater visibility and control of the business. Flexibility to support growth was also a key priority for the ambitious team at JT Atkinson.

A Foundation for Change

Merchants like JT Atkinson want an ERP solution that they can easily flex themselves, outside the initial implementation project and without the need for ongoing consultancy time. Intact iQ is the merchant ERP solution that goes beyond paying lip service to the term ’embracing change’. The solution was designed from the ground up to support agile operations. The team at JT Atkinson were immediately drawn to this unique element of the software. It will not only enable the team to be agile as changes can be readily accommodated in the software, but it will also help lower the total cost of ownership of their ERP solution.

For JT Atkinson, being able to quickly adapt to changing market conditions is paramount. With training provided by Intact, the project team will be empowered to easily customise their Intact iQ solution over its lifetime; all in a code-free environment that doesn’t affect the core platform and upgrade compatibility.

Speaking of the decision to move to Intact, Mark Atkinson, JT Atkinson Director, notes, ‘The initial thing that attracted us to the Intact iQ solution was its underlying configurability and its openness to interface readily with other software. Our conviction only grew throughout the selection process as it became clear to us that Intact iQ has these characteristics built into it at its core.

Recent events have underlined the need to be flexible and nimble. The requirement to adapt working practices quickly and effectively has been a huge challenge in the last 18 months, and we believe that Intact iQ will allow us to more readily adapt to changing circumstances going forward.’

Wide Ranging Benefits

Beyond the flexibility benefits Intact iQ offers, the project team at JT Atkinson were also impressed by, what they termed, the ‘undeniably impressive’ range of features included. From merchant focused features such as trade counter, advanced rebate management, hire, transport scheduling etc. to essentials such as business intelligence, workflow automation, mobile, online and CRM, all are included within one cohesive platform.

As noted by Mark, ‘Intact iQ stood out early on because it checked off nearly all of our requirements in the base feature list, but not only that, the additional functionality demonstrated to us gave us the confidence that the solution would be able to continually grow and adapt alongside the business.’

ERP – Your Technical Foundation

Another principal factor for JT Atkinson was the integration capabilities the solution offered. Integration projects have a reputation of being notoriously onerous but modern, open ERP systems, like Intact iQ, are turning this on its head. Today merchants, like JT Atkinson, want to  cherry pick best-in-class software and applications to support their business objectives. But what they don’t want is to create a mish-mash of siloed systems that may deliver niche benefits but have wider negative consequences, related to duplication of effort, lack of data transparency etc.

Mark notes, ‘The ability to seamlessly integrate with other systems was an important consideration for us. You don’t know what technology shifts are on the horizon so we needed to invest in an ERP system that can easily integrate with any current or future ‘best of breed’ solutions we use to ensure we retain a cohesive, central hub to run the business. Essentially, it’s about looking to the future and covering the unknowns and that’s what we’ll have with Intact iQ and its built in REST API capabilities.’

Working in Partnership

Intact are relishing the opportunity to work with the JT Atkinson team on this project. Speaking about the partnership Gary Brookshaw, Intact Product Director, notes; ‘JT Atkinson are a well-established family business with high ambitions for business improvement and growth. We are delighted to welcome them to the Intact Family!

This project will cover their multi-faceted business and bring together key elements such as warehouse management, hire and online sales. We will also drive core operational efficiencies and control where it matters – in their strong branch network.

Their business already has a strong belief in the power of business intelligence but now, with the power and flexibility of Intact iQ, they can truly harness that information in business workflows to drive efficiencies, profitability, and growth.

Integration is also key for them, so they really appreciate elements such as our REST API that gives them future confidence in our open system.’

About JT Atkinson

JT Atkinson is a family owned independent Builders’ merchant with over 160 years’ experience in the supply of building materials. With a comprehensive range of traditional building, roofing, timber, plumbing and heating materials, a growing range of sustainable products, local knowledgeable staff and a large fleet of delivery vehicles, JT Atkinson operates 30 branches across the north of England along with 2 online stores.

About Intact

Founded in 1992 Intact is a merchant focused business management and ERP software and services company where all product development, consultancy and support is carried out locally. Designed for today’s digital economy our merchant ERP solution, Intact iQ, is an end-to-end customisable solution based on the latest technology stack. Developed, implemented and supported by our 170+ strong team, Intact iQ supports every level of your business and extends seamlessly to mobile and online.

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Fiona McGuinness

I've been part of the Intact family for 16 rewarding years. After completing my Business Studies degree, I knew Marketing was a field I wanted to pursue. Prior to joining Intact, I primarily worked in the financial sector, focusing on marketing for credit unions. When I started at Intact, I handled all the marketing tasks by myself. Over time, as our team expanded, so did my role. Now, I specialise in crafting compelling content across various platforms, from blogs to video scripts. No two days are the same, and I thrive on the dynamic nature of my role. Whether it's diving into customer case studies or lead campaigns, I'm driven by the positive impact our solutions bring to businesses. In an age where AI plays a significant role, I remain a firm believer in the power of authentic content. When I'm not working, you'll find me enjoying quality time with my family, sewing, or watercolor paintings.

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