The “Centrale del Latte di Alessandria ed Asti” cooperative was founded in 1931 by a dozen or so farmers in the provinces of Alessandria and Asti who were committed to developing the local livestock and to promoting a genuine and complete product with high nutritional value, such as fresh milk. The “NUOVA CENTRALE DEL LATTE” joint venture was founded in 1953 during the post-war rebuilding period. The founders of the new company were milk cooperatives, retailers, the Bank of S. Paolo of Torino and the City of Alessandria, which oversaw the building of the current headquarters in Viale Ennio Massobrio, Alessandria. Over the following decades, other municipal dairies were purchased, thus extending the range of action to include the entire province of Alessandra and later Asti and its province, and the cooperative took on its current name. In the 2000s, the marketing activity grew with the expansion of the range and distribution in the provinces of Turin, Cuneo and Pavia, and with the acquisition of other brands in Lucca, Massa and Pisa (MI’Latte brand) and the province of Savona (Latte MU brand). An ISO 9001 and ISO 22000 (March 2008, first municipal dairy in Italy) certified company, in May 1999 it set up the first example of a controlled and certified chain for the production of High Quality Milk (derived exclusively from 12 dairy farms in the province of Alessandria). It now serves almost 4500 customers on a daily basis, with over 400 packaged fresh products.
The project initially involved the installation of the ERP Teseo 7 system and its interfacing with the portable terminals in use. In particular, the Teseo 7 solved the needs relating to off-truck sales, data exchange in multiple formats for the transmission/acquisition of documents from/to mass retailers, preparation of flows for external printing of invoices, calculation of monthly transport fees, commissions and bonuses and deferred discounts to customers, monitoring of direct costs and allocation of indirect costs to various cost centres. The need for data analysis/control was met with the implementation of the Infobusiness application for both commercial data and for analytical accounting data, which enabled the company to obtain actual information and forecasts, fundamental for the decision-making process. The Self Control application is then used to prepare the financial statements and management analysis, also by division. The ZCS Balanced Scorecard application was implemented for a better understanding of the company’s overall performance, instrumental in driving the business strategies. Cassiopea enables the real-time management of sales data, providing the sales force and sales structure with rapid access to their information via the web. The integration of Doc Finance finally allows streamlining and optimising the financial flows. The Teseo 7 database is widely used for developing data analysis prototypes, which is performed with the use of EXCEL, also widely used in the company.
Over the years, the “Centrale del Latte” continued to expand and modernise; at the same time, management discovered that the old information system was no longer able to meet the new needs for the effective management of highly fractional off-truck sales, handling of a substantial amount of data, support in cooperating with large retailers, and the need for in-depth analysis of the available data.
ZCS was chosen as a technological partner because of the high configurability of the ERP Teseo system and the variety of solutions available, which are able to meet the new business needs.
ERP Teseo 7 is like the engine of a complex constellation made up of other specialised applications, which standardises the flow of business information that can be accessed and controlled by the various company figures based on access rights.
Teseo 7 allows us to check the company performances much easier and more efficiently. Over the years, ERP Teseo 7 has become a valuable tool for the improvement of the business and organisational processes; through continuous dialogue with the ZCS staff, we were also able to develop important internal skills for managing a complex information system.