From machines and equipment to interior design and furniture, there are growing expectations around product configuration.

Why?

Unless their buying criteria is around lowest price, today’s consumers don’t want off-the-shelf, commodity products. They want products that reflect who they are and what they stand for. Products that have a personally selected pattern or color, for example—like a bicycle or window treatment.

Today’s businesses want custom products, too. Sometimes, unique product specifications can make a tremendous impact on the safety, comfort, or productivity of a company’s employees or end customers. For example, you might be the only producer of a component that keeps a custom-built, industrial machine running each day—or a custom part used in a medical device that treats cancer patients around the world.

On top of it all, both businesses and consumers also want the experience of product configuration. Whether via a web shop or on the phone, they want to participate in the creative design and personalization process. People get a great sense of satisfaction and confidence in their purchase when they have ownership—and they barely notice that they’re actually saving you time and money in the process.

Jeeves Product Configurator is a proprietary add-on module of the Jeeves ERP system designed to help you to reduce the costs, errors, and time needed to give your clients get the order-unique product they envision.

BENEFITS

  • Quote faster than the competition, and increase the number of quotes generated.
  • Reduce order entry errors and order cycle time.
  • Reduce cost per customer transaction, while improving the customer experience through engagement.
  • Reduce engineering support and the time to market for order-unique products.
  • Decrease inventory levels.
  • Increase sales productivity through partial self-service.
  • Reduce the dependencies on engineering and production preparation staff for order-unique products.

FEATURES

LAUNCH FROM JEEVES ERP

Jeeves Product Configurator can be launched directly from within the Jeeves ERP system, giving your sales reps the quick transition they need when walking a customer through their options.

CUSTOMIZABLE FORMULAS AND MATRICES

As part of the Jeeves Product Configurator setup, you can fill in a powerful matrix that will guide your users through a wizard-style product configuration. The matrix helps you to define your products and their features, as well as control the relationship between options, such as invalid or mandatory combinations. Conditions and formulas can also be set up. For example, you might require user responses, or limit the user’s inputs, such as a range of measurement or weight.

QUESTION-AND-ANSWER-BASED WIZARD

Jeeves Product Configurator’s uses a Q&A-style wizard will make product configuration easy and intuitive for your users. The user’s answers can be as simple as “yes” or “no,” a choice in a drop-down list of options, or a data point between a “from” and “to” range. To make the process as efficient as possible, invalid options are grayed out and conflicts are highlighted in red.

MODEL

Defining a product as a “model” flags to the system that it is a configured product with features. A model defines the scope and limits of a product, and generates a template bill of material and routings. Through a model, you can deliver a broader product description, and then leverage features and questions in the configuration wizard to further define an order-unique product. The model allows for make-to-order production, and requires fewer item numbers and stocked inventory in order to fulfill customer demand.

FEATURES

Features characterize a product. All features needed for order entry can be defined using numeric, discrete numeric, option-based, text-based, or file-based values. Using the feature description, features are prompted as questions in the configuration wizard, and can build the order as the questions are answered. All answers can be connected to and controlled by corresponding formulas, conditions, materials, or operations. A set of features can be connected to a model.

FEATURE GROUPS

Jeeves Product Configurator intuitively groups features together in a tab grid, guiding the configuration wizard.

ITEM SIGNIFICANCE KEY

In Jeeves Product Configurator, the item significance key can be used in two ways: either to search for earlier configurations when customers enter repeat orders, or to quickly enter a configuration without displaying the configuration wizard matrix.

STANDARD AND SAVED CONFIGURATIONS

Users can start with standard product configurations in order to save time and manage the configuration process by exception. Similarly, configurations from previously ordered products (unique product SKUs) can be accessed and copied for new orders.

SIMULATION MODE

You can use Jeeves Product Configurator in simulation mode. With order-unique BOMs and routings, and complete visibility into inventory availability and purchasing, the Jeeves Product Configurator is able to dynamically calculate costing and lead times.

RELEASE MANUFACTURING AND PURCHASE ORDERS FROM RESULTS

Authorized users can release manufacturing and purchase orders from a configuration result, or a simulation result.

CHANGED CONFIGURATIONS

Users can delete and change configurations as long as neither a manufacturing or purchase order has been released.

AUTOMATIC GENERATION OF SALES QUOTE

Jeeves Product Configurator can also generate a sales quote based on price options that have been set up in the matrix.

AUTOMATIC GENERATION OF BOMS AND ROUTINGS

The quantities and specifications for all product attributes can be used to generate a unique bill of material and routing. Any value to a material or routing can be configured or calculated using a formula.

SEAMLESS ERP INTEGRATION

Because of Jeeves Product Configurator’s XML connection with Jeeves ERP, all order-unique data, from quote to cash, is updated and stored in Jeeves ERP.

SUPPORTS MULTIPLE PRODUCT TYPES

Products can be configured dynamically—sales order line by sales order line. In order to simplify BOM maintenance, phantom products can be created to group certain components or operations together.

SUPPORTS COUNTRY-SPECIFIC VARIANTS

For many manufacturers, country-specific laws require geographic and language-based configuration options, such as different electrical standards. Jeeves Product Configurator supports these conditions through component attributes.

SUPPORTS MULTI-COMPANY CONFIGURATION

Jeeves Product Configurator supports product configuration by a selling company that is later fulfilled by a delivery company.

ATTACH DRAWINGS AND DOCUMENTS

You can attach documents or CAD drawings to any saved configuration—helping to speed any potential collaboration with engineering.

INTEGRATION WITH WEB STORE

Because of the open, service-oriented architecture of Jeeves ERP, Jeeves Product Configurator can be easily integrated with your web store.

ERP Sales and Customer Service
Whether your goals are to find new clients, or service your existing customers, Jeeves ERP includes fully integrated CRM functionality, plus a range of order fulfillment tools that will give your customer service reps the data they need to set realistic expectations around pricing, lead times, and deliveries. You can extend this module with the product configurator in order to assist customers with configuring order-unique products. With a 360-degree view of the business, your customer-facing team will be able to keep customers happy and provide more accurate revenue forecasts.