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Aptean Apparel ERP, RLM Edition Case Study: Sail to Sable

Aptean Apparel ERP, RLM Edition Case Study: Sail to Sable


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Aptean Apparel ERP, RLM Edition Case Study: Sail to Sable

Feb 6, 2023


  • Sail to Sable Sees Omnichannel Growth With Purpose-Built Apparel ERP

Sail to Sable specializes in sophisticated women's resort wear with a whimsical twist. Drawn by a love of fashion and inspired by the eastern seaboard beach resorts, founder Jennifer Stocker left a New York City publishing career to launch Sail to Sable, originally focusing on home goods. When she introduced a classic tunic to her offerings, customers responded with so much enthusiasm that it was a natural evolution to move the company into apparel.

Today the business designs, sources and distributes dresses, tops, shorts, rompers, skirts, pants, coats and jackets. It produces spring, summer, fall, holiday and resort collections, and its ladies' fashions are known for their colorful stripes and prints, bell sleeves and fun trims, from fringe and feathers to tassels and bows.

Since its inception, Sail to Sable has seen steady increases in e-commerce website traffic and expanded order volume from wholesale customers. In percentage revenue growth, the company has doubled in size every year since its start in 2012.

The Challenge

A move to Shopify’s e-commerce platform three years ago made managing the front end of its website more user-friendly, but Sail to Sable was still relying on the QuickBooks off-the-shelf accounting package to manage both inventory and orders.

As customer orders surged year-over-year, the company’s lean management team and network of sales representatives began to feel the pressures and see the pitfalls of having to manage more and more data with poor visibility to key information. For example, salespeople would take orders from retail customers at trade shows, not realizing which styles were already sold out.

“We never really knew what our inventory numbers were unless we stopped to spend several hours analyzing our data,” said Victoria Brigida, Director of Operations at Sail to Sable.

In addition, Sail to Sable tracked UPC codes on a spreadsheet and stored corporate credit card numbers for many boutique clients in a safe. These card numbers must be entered manually each time the company processes an invoice.

Here are other challenges that Sail to Sable encountered:

  • Continued company growth made it difficult to manage both inventory and ordering

  • Manual data entry was taking up time and causing delays and inaccurate inventory counts

  • New electronic data interchange (EDI) vendor requirements needed to be put in place immediately

The Solution

Having had some preliminary discussions about Aptean’s industry-specific apparel enterprise resource planning (ERP) system in prior years, Sail to Sable asked the fashion business solutions provider for a comprehensive proposal. Sail to Sable was impressed and decided to move forward with a rollout of Aptean Apparel ERP.

The project was fast-tracked so that the system could support EDI-intensive shipments. Within a busy three-month period, Aptean Apparel ERP allowed Sail to Sable to:

  • Migrate product information, UPC codes and other business data from QuickBooks and spreadsheets to the Aptean Apparel ERP solution

  • Build integrations between Aptean Apparel ERP and the new 3PL partner for seamless fulfillment of both B2B and B2C transactions

  • Integrate with the Shopify e-commerce solution, building additional interfaces with the 3PL

  • Activate automated EDI connectivity with department store clients

  • Automate the credit card charging process for specialty store customers so that their cards were automatically authorized at pick-ticket time and charged upon shipping

“Aptean Apparel ERP's integrated system allows us to be a lot less involved in handling single orders. We technically don't have to do anything. Everything takes care of itself.”

Victoria BrigidaDirector of OperationsSail to Sable

The Result

Beyond streamlined e-commerce, as a result of its Aptean Apparel ERP implementation, Sail to Sable has much greater real-time inventory visibility all around. Now, field sales representatives can confidently take orders with available-to-promise inventory details at their fingertips. Plus, new sales team members have access to historical information to help them hit the ground running with their customers.

Overall, the company has unlocked many benefits, including:

  • Gained real-time visibility by having inventory details available at their fingertips

  • Alleviated many manual touchpoints that previously consumed an inordinate amount of time and resources

  • Activated automated EDI connectivity with department store clients

Sail to Sable’s leadership also has more time to devote to strategic planning. “We’re able to give important priorities more attention because we aren’t wrapped up in the detailed minutia of all of the orders and manual administrative tasks,” Brigida says.

Now it’s smooth sailing for this entrepreneurial fashion business as it prepares for the next growth wave—business as usual.

Set Sail to Success With Aptean Apparel ERP

Manual methods, basic tools and outdated systems just won’t cut it when it comes to the fast-paced fashion industry. Instead, you need a purpose-built apparel ERP solution to automate and streamline processes, provide comprehensive visibility, improve demand forecasting and production planning, and enhance inventory management.

Together with the by-your-side support of our in-house experts, this functionality allows you to accelerate time to market, improve agility and boost profitability—all with a straightforward implementation.

So, if you’re ready to modernize your apparel business like Sail to Sable, contact us today or schedule a personalized demo with an Aptean expert.

Ready to transform your apparel business?

We’ve got the specialized ERP solutions you need to conquer your fashion industry challenges.

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