Client Case Study Video Interview with Lucid Motors, Menlo Park, CA
We recently went to visit one of our clients in the local San Francisco Bay area here in California called Lucid Motors.
Lucid are creating a brand-new electric vehicle which will be years ahead of the competition and as we saw with our own eyes highly advanced and very beautiful to look at. We are very proud of our small involvement with the production of their brand-new car, the components of which were purchased using our software ! Almost the entire team at Lucid touches our system in one way or another from the engineers to production to purchasing and the accounting team.
After having used our software for 18 months we were curious to see what benefits they had seen from the system and what their feelings were about both the product and us here at Mikrofax.
So we sat down with supply chain analyst, Ming, and spent 45 minutes interviewing her regarding her and her team’s use of the software you can see highlights of part of the interview here in this video.
Q: Why were you looking for a system in the first place and how long did it take to find one ?
A: We spent about three months looking for the right solution for our business and the effort was being led by the accounting team as they are the ones who are most familiar with our cost accounting and chart of accounts. We did a comprehensive market analysis of the majority of the procurement tools that were available to us and we decided upon the Mikrofax eBA system due to a combination of high functionality and reasonable cost. The other factor in choosing Mikrofax was that we received very fast answers to all of the questions we asked you before we purchased it related to the different aspects we were interested in prior to signing a contract with you. It was easily seen by us that the system has very strong functionality and this convinced us to go ahead and we have not regretted it.
Lucid Video Interview
We were looking for a solution to assist us with our efficiency – before we got the system, we spent a lot of time and effort on procuring components with many back and forth emails between our different departments to first source the components and then receive approval for purchasing the equipment and finally accounting for the purchases – all of this took a lot of people a lot of time and we thought there had to be a better way. That’s what caused us to initiate the search.
Q: Now that you have been using the system for 18 months has the system met your expectations in a functional sense?
A: Definitely YES ! All of us who use the system are very happy and are strong advocates for it in the business. Even the engineers who normally hate everything that we ask them to use have finally come around and adapted to it and now see the benefits of using it. Even my boss who was not a believer at the outset could see that once we had the system installed and it was operating and that you could adjust it to his requirements even he now sees the benefits of the solution as well. I would say that all of my team including my boss are big advocates for the solution.
The system is definitely one of the easiest systems I have used and also your technical support is one of the most responsive that I have ever worked with. Clearly you can see the system was designed by a team of people who are really expert in purchasing and procurement.
The other features we appreciate in the system are the fact it keeps a detailed history of what we are doing with our purchase orders including any changes and it constantly monitors the data integrity. This means that we can trace back to find any problems with our ordering or with our vendors and allows us to find areas to improve and clearly we needed a system to do that.
Q : Has the system been easy to use ?
A: Yes very easy to use and very easy to train – in fact I only delivered one training session and I can tell you that it’s very rare people come to me to ask “Hey, can you show me how to use the system?”. Any questions I generally get are very specific about a specific function in the system – I never have encountered anybody who feels “threatened” by the software – it does seem to be a very intuitive tool.
Q: How reliable has the system been ? Its speed of response and any downtime experienced?
A: The system has been very reliable and is very quick we have not noticed any lags in response whatsoever and have not experienced any downtime – I have been very impressed.
We felt we had to convince our top management regarding the use of the system and you have managed to do that by showcasing your ability to make changes in whatever we ask. For example, certain areas were not quite to our liking and some of the formatting we wanted to change and you were quick to do that and it made our senior management very happy.
You are even proactive enough to do changes without even asking us first because you know intuitively that is what we want, that is very impressive service. And even when we ask for customized changes that do cost some money we never get a big bill and we really appreciate that because we are a startup and our budgets are always constrained ; you always worked within the budgets that we had available and that was appreciated as well.
Q: Can you give me one example of how the system has saved you time and effort ?
A: Yes just lately we had to change all of our cost centers which in any other system would have been a very large pain, however, in your system all we did was enter the new cost centers and switchover the approving people to those new cost centers and the system just worked – it was amazing ! How did you do that? We were very impressed as there was no impact on our business and it felt like both you and the system thought everything through and made the whole experience painless for us.
I ran my tests first to make sure everything should go smoothly and it did!
Q: How do you find working with the Mikrofax team?
A: Your technical guys really understand our questions and that’s really quite something because in the past we have found that technical support people can be nice and they can have a good attitude but they just don’t know the product very well I think that is sometimes a problem with large companies technical support departments where the people are not trained and the turnover rate is very high but forMikrofax that is clearly not the issue.
One example I can give you is we recently asked you for a new feature in the system to have a 1000 character formatted box where we could enter some additional text on the orders and you guys provided it such that it works just like a Word document and we can format it and make the text look pretty and it’s so easy to use, I was very impressed.
In summary, I can say we have had a very good experience with Mikrofax we look forward to continuing our relationship and expanding the use of the system ; so far we feel it has been money well spent.