Software to help Dawson deliver the headlines faster

Dawson News is implementing new supply chain software as part of a major 9 million IT systems investment over 24 months to support and improve operational and customer services.

As one of the UK's largest newspaper and magazine wholesalers, it is looking to the new IT systems to build on its 22 per cent market share of the UK news distribution market.

The use of Sterling order management and Sterling warehouse management system (WMS) components that form part of the Selling and Fulfilment Suite from provider Sterling Commerce will form a significant element of the company's strategic plan for the continuous improvement of its customer services, combined with measures to reduce operating costs.

In planning the overhaul of its supply chain management system, Dawson News ruled out an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system. The firm said its system selection was based on Sterling's configurability and scalability to meet the news wholesaler's business requirements, delivering centralised customer order management, including sales and returns process and control with local execution.

John Townley, Dawson News managing director, said: "We chose Sterling Commerce because they offered a more simple and effective route to implementation, combined with a strong technology architecture which enables flexibility and adaptability in a complex supply chain. This will meet our needs now and as they change."

The WMS will centralise distribution management control, replacing multiple instances of a distributed legacy system. The company anticipates this will reduce total cost of ownership and provide a global view of inventory across the supply network, common processes and tools to help rapidly add new distribution centre capacity.

As a result, Dawson News expects publisher and retailer customers will experience a more consistent service with high levels of compliance, critical to attaining key performance measures.

Dawson News' customers include all of the UK's major publishers, delivering over one billion copy sales each year to 14,000 news outlets - from independents to multi-sites and supermarket chains.

The system's roll out across all of Dawson's news centres is expected to be completed by May 2010.

Miya Knights

A 25-year veteran enterprise technology expert, Miya Knights applies her deep understanding of technology gained through her journalism career to both her role as a consultant and as director at Retail Technology Magazine, which she helped shape over the past 17 years. Miya was educated at Oxford University, earning a master’s degree in English.

Her role as a journalist has seen her write for many of the leading technology publishers in the UK such as ITPro, TechWeekEurope, CIO UK, Computer Weekly, and also a number of national newspapers including The Times, Independent, and Financial Times.