Featured in this post
DeIorio’s Migrates to Cloud-Based Aptean Food & Beverage ERP for Greater System Reliability and Utility
DeIorio’s Migrates to Cloud-Based Aptean Food & Beverage ERP for Greater System Reliability and Utility
Jul 20, 2023John McCurdy
From the humble beginnings of an Italian bread baking operation spread across three backyards in 1920s upstate New York, DeIorio Foods, Inc. (DeIorio’s) has come a long way. What began as the dream of two brothers and their wives selling fresh loaves to locals has become a leading nationwide supplier of dough balls, flats, shells, sub rolls, breadsticks and other related products.
That’s because once Pasquale “Pat” and Giovanni “John” DeIorio relocated the business from their homes to a location on Lansing Street, regular expansion became the norm. And as the company’s footprint grew, so too did its offerings—from breads to frozen baked goods and pizza dough, as well as a first-of-its-kind in-store bakery system that could be installed in independent grocery stores.
In 1985, DeIorio’s made the shift from selling to retail through direct store delivery to the frozen wholesale foodservice market, and not long after, the decision was made to stop all fresh baked product lines in favor of frozen products. Then, in 1995, the business debuted its revolutionary frozen dough balls with proprietary formulation and manufacturing process, fueling further growth.
Today, the company serves pizzerias, sub shops, in-store bakeries, cafes, schools, institutions, convenience stores, quick-service restaurants and theme parks, as well as private labels. The 120,000-square foot facility on Bleecker Street is a fully modernized operation with strong food safety practices and an Aptean ERP solution at the center of its tech stack.
Cory Jones, vice president of finance at DeIorio’s, saw the value of the system as a “single source of truth” and shared platform for all operational areas, but also identified that the organization could get even more out of it by migrating it to the cloud.
“The original decision to implement a previous version of Aptean’s food ERP was made back in 2013,” he said. “Then, when we were looking to upgrade our system, we thought we could make a pretty seamless transition to the new cloud-based Aptean Food & Beverage ERP.”
Aptean team members recently spoke with Jones to learn more about the benefits DeIorio’s is seeing; the value of clean and highly accessible data; the migration experience and advantages of a cloud setup; and his words of wisdom for other companies considering such a move. Read on for the full story.
Achieving Operational Improvements
By updating and moving its instance of Aptean Food & Beverage ERP to the cloud, DeIorio’s has been able to realize the greater system dependability needed to implement additional functionalities of the software with confidence. That’s allowed the business to convert what were once manual processes to fully digital methods, which saves time and helps to reduce the chance of human error.
“Having more reliability with the cloud-based system, we’ve been able to add features to the system, such as the planning worksheet for purchasing replenishments,” said Jones. “That is something that previously was done completely manually and was not going well—we had a lot of issues with maintaining proper levels of inventory.”
Other production planning and inventory procedures have also been adapted to take full advantage of the software’s capabilities—and that’s led to greater precision, which in turn is having a positive impact on the financial side. Now that DeIorio’s decision-makers have greater visibility into their information, they’re able to make more informed choices that produce better results.
“I would definitely say that planning and inventory control have improved and become more efficient,” Jones said. “We have a much better handle on both of those and we have a much better handle on budgeting going forward. Now, as we do our costing and forecasting, those processes can change from manual to being handled by the system, which means they’ll be much more accurate and reliable.”
Knowing the Importance of Good Data
The better accuracy of data that Jones spoke of is perhaps the most significant benefit that DeIorio’s has unlocked with Aptean Food & Beverage ERP. It’s a considerable competitive advantage, as employees don’t have to second-guess whether or not the information they see is correct, and having all the facts and figures highly visible aids in creating the optimal business strategies.
“Having reliable data is the only way our business can remain competitive,” said Jones. “To know exactly what our costs are and exactly what our capabilities are so that we can be one step ahead of the competition—it’s crucial.”
What’s more, the fact that the system integrates all departments’ data on one easy-to-use platform and offers features for just about every functional area means there are fewer data silos within the organization. Everyone at DeIorio’s can rely on the food ERP as the system of record and there’s no need to transition between multiple disparate solutions when carrying out mission-critical tasks.
“Having a reliable solution like Aptean Food & Beverage ERP has allowed us to consolidate everything into one system,” Jones said. “And we’re looking to take that further by rolling out more features so that we can do more all within that one system, making it the central source of information for our entire company.”
Cloud is the way to go. It's so much easier and so much more reliable. If you have an internet connection, you're good to go.
Working Together for a Positive Implementation Experience
Jones’ vision for a straightforward and relatively problem-free migration process came to fruition thanks to a collaborative effort between DeIorio’s and Aptean. Our implementation experts were able to act as guides as the software was brought over to the cloud and the updated version was deployed at the customer’s facilities, minimizing the need for any re-training of personnel.
“We imagined it would be pretty smooth, and it was,” said Jones. “Plus, our employees already had a lot of familiarity with the software, and it’s very user-friendly. It’s been good for our team and it wasn’t too steep of a learning curve getting on the improved system.
Meanwhile, the staff at DeIorio’s has come to rely on Aptean’s dedicated support professionals for answers to their inquiries and advice on how to fully maximize the utility of our solution. Aptean Food & Beverage ERP is developed to be flexible, and our team is always eager to help clients leverage the many functionalities that the system offers.
“Aptean’s customer success teams are very responsive—we usually get very quick responses, and if it’s something that requires further investigation, they’re quick to tell us that and get back to us when they have a more complete answer,” Jones said. “Also, if it’s something that maybe the system isn’t currently configured to do, we talk about options for further training and development.”
Unlocking the Benefits of a Cloud-Based System
The greater reliability of a cloud-based ERP has been the most apparent advantage of the new software hosting model for DeIorio’s. When the company can depend on the system being available, productivity can remain high despite external disruptions—and with Aptean-provided maintenance and data protection, there’s little chance of a loss that would hold back operations.
“Having our own local server for the software was resulting in a lot of unplanned downtime and necessary maintenance. And when we went down, we would be down for a number of days, sometimes weeks,” said Jones.
“But with a cloud-based system, we don’t have to worry about a power outage or anything else at our site because we know that it’s backed up in the cloud and there are other people who are watching over it. That means a lot fewer headaches for us,” he concluded.
Still, that’s really just one of the benefits of moving the solution to the cloud. As an implementation method for deployment, it offers greater flexibility, enhanced cybersecurity and broader accessibility as compared to an on-premise setup. It can also make integrations with other software easier and lessens the burden on DeIorio’s internal IT team.
“Cloud is the way to go,” Jones said. “It’s so much easier and so much more reliable. If you have an internet connection, you’re good to go.”
We’ve been very happy with our return on investment so far. Aptean Food & Beverage ERP is already helping us to stay competitive by giving us a better handle on our costs and production.
Passing on Advice and Lessons Learned
When asked for any words of wisdom that he’d share with other organizations looking to either implement their first ERP solution or migrate a current system to the cloud, Jones was quick to re-emphasize the importance of clean, accurate data and sound processes for recording it. The software can certainly help you keep figures straight, but it can’t correct what was faulty in the first place.
“Make sure that you have a solid foundation to build upon and make sure that your data is sound,” Jones said. “If you’re populating a field, you should know why you’re populating it. And keep in mind that one little change can cause 20 different issues to pop up.”
“We realized that a lot of our data in the old system wasn’t sound when we brought it over into the new system, and that resulted in some problems,” he continued. “It wasn’t because the new system wasn’t working—it was because the data we put into the system wasn’t correct.”
Beyond this “good housekeeping” of your information, it’s also important to remember that asking questions is not a sign of ignorance, but rather an opportunity to learn and get more out of the software in which you’re investing. Just be sure to do some due diligence yourself beforehand so that you can tailor your queries to get clear and applicable responses.
“We have the most success when we ask a lot of knowledgeable questions—that helps us get specific instructions for what we need to do,” said Jones. “To get the best results, come to the table well-informed. That gets you quick results, because you can speak to the Aptean team on a higher level and get to a solution quicker.”
Choosing Aptean as a Solutions Provider You Can Trust
Looking back on the decision to upgrade and migrate Aptean Food & Beverage ERP to the cloud, Jones expresses satisfaction and reiterates the positive results that DeIorio’s is already seeing. And looking forward to the future, he’s expecting continuous improvement, more refined processes and better business outcomes.
“We’ve been very happy with our return on investment so far,” said Jones. “Aptean Food & Beverage ERP is already helping us to stay competitive by giving us a better handle on our costs and production. Knowing whether or not we’re running up to standards and doing a good job with purchasing is huge.”
“And having reliable data that’s hard to poke holes in will allow us to hold people accountable to their responsibilities. We’ll be able to make business decisions based on good information instead of the less reliable numbers we had in the past,” he concluded.
At Aptean, our ERP solution for food and beverage businesses delivers on its value proposition in large part thanks to the decades of collective expertise that our team has in the industry. We know the unique challenges of not just the sector as a whole but also the sub-verticals within it and we’re eager to share best practices and tips for overcoming the obstacles you face.
In addition to the guidance we provide during implementation, the support provided after rollout and the option to deploy the software from the cloud, we’re also proud of our industry recognition. Most recently, we were named North American Food and Beverage ERP Customer Value Leader for 2023 by Frost and Sullivan, which is a testament to our dedication to the industry and commitment to clients.
Now, if you’re ready to start the conversation of implementing Aptean Food & Beverage ERP for your food and beverage company, feel free to reach out to us today. We can help answer your questions and determine what’s right for your situation, and you can also request a personalized demo.
Ready to improve your bakery operations?
We have the ERP solutions to boost your performance when working with grain-based products.