Advantive & Distribution One Empower Retail Expansion for Industrial Distributor



eCommerce, Reporting


Distribution, Industrial Supply

For more than 30 years, BW Industrial Sales has distributed industrial supplies to North American OEM and commercial industrial clients, and maintained an exhaustive inventory list, earning them a reputation as a vendor partner that provides a rare “never out of stock” experience. BW Industrial Sales attributes their success to their ability to adapt to changing market conditions, recognize and anticipate the needs of their customers, and expedite orders through leveraged global partnerships. Developing relationships like this takes time and effort, and it’s even more amazing when you realize BW Industrial Sales was handling their retail operations with outdated software.

“We did not have one specific issue to resolve when transferring from the old system to Advantive.” Wrote CJ Bundschuh, Chief Innovation Officer of BW Industrial Sales. “Our old system was designed for a retail store and not capable of some of the requirements for our distribution business operates. We felt that the transition would better our operations as it was designed for fastener distribution.”

To get BW Industrial Sales to their next level of business, they needed to select a software partner that would help their teams move past their limited retail capabilities, expedite time-consuming training, and remove barriers to reporting. When it came time to choose that partner, their search brought them to DistributionOne Systems and Advantive.

Could Advantive Be The Partner They Needed?

Before BW Industrial Sales made the switch, they met with Advantive team members exhaustively to iron out their primary concerns. If BW Industrial Sales was going to transition, they had to confirm that DistributionOne Systems could handle these concerns and more.

Fix Time Consuming Training

Their old system used a lengthy and inefficient process for employee training. Could the platform provide a more efficient and effective employee training environment to expedite new hires through a user-friendly interface?

Barriers to Reporting

BW Industrial Sales’ old system was bad at generating the kinds of detailed reporting necessary to grow their company. Would DistributionOne Systems provide customizable reporting features across multiple software functions?

Limited retail capabilities.

Most importantly, their old system was limited in its ability to price inventory accurately and predict cashflow. Were DistributionOne Systems capable of providing a retail platform that could show up to six decimal places?

Luckily, DistributionOne Systems was able to answer each of their concerns in kind.

Implementing DistributionOne Systems

BW Industrial Sales ultimately chose DistributionOne because they provided a software platform that could meet their needs and more. But what pushed them over the edge was Advantive’s exceptional customer service and expert transition process. The close collaboration between the DistributionOne team and BW Industrial Sales, culminating with an Advantive member being on-site for a full week, ensured the transition was smooth, successful, and seamless.

“We wanted to work with DistributionOne because of the transition process and the promised customer service,” said CJ. “We grew close with the team that worked with us on our transition and was in contact with them daily for months. Even had one member in house to help for a full week which was absolutely incredible!”

While on site, DistributionOne facilitated employee productivity and overall well-being by assisting with all business operations. Implementing the new software reduced individual responsibilities, allowing employees to rely on comprehensive data and focus on essential tasks.

“Working with Distribution One changed our situation by opening the door to capabilities we originally did not have… With DistributionOne we have had great success with employee productivity and overall health by allowing the system assist in all business operations. With less responsibility for each individual, our employees have an ease of mind knowing that the system’s data is thorough.”

Working with DistributionOne Systems also enhanced BW Industrial Sales’ capabilities by providing a more user-friendly system with improved navigation. The training feature allowed employees to learn and make mistakes without affecting the live system, while the close collaboration during the transition ensured a seamless implementation.

“The system itself is much more user friendly and is easier to navigate. The training feature is spectacular for when an employee is in training and is able to make mistakes without messing up the real system… But the biggest difference was the transition and how Distribution 1 had multiple members working with my team and making sure everything was in place for a smooth transition. We would not do the transition again unless we have someone on site like we did for whole week.”

Benefits Achieved by Transitioning DistributionOne

By transitioning from their old software provider to DistributionOne Systems and Advantive, BW Industrial Sales was able to achieve several benefits beyond what they had originally hoped. Following the switch to DistributionOne, BW Industrial Sales found the new features provided by the software increased employee productivity and quality of life. The upgraded retail experience and added reporting functionality supercharged their sales. And training new employees became much easier.

New Retail Capabilities

Nothing shows progress like increased sales, and the new retail capabilities BW Industrial Sales implemented directly impacted their ability to price, predict, and manage their orders and stock. Adding four additional decimal places for pricing proved to be a significant improvement over their previous system.

“The biggest positive for the transfer was having 4 decimal places for pricing. Our old system only had 3 and if it was possible, we need 5 or 6! This really help our cash flow stay accurate and not get rounded numbers in reports.”

New Features & Increased Employee Productivity

DistributionOne Systems offered various features that stood out to CJ & BW Industrial Sales, including Vendor Managed Inventory (VMI) and bulk import capabilities.

“Some products that stuck out to me are the VMI and some other apps that we currently don’t use but want to later down the road. The bulk imports feature throughout the system is an awesome time saver! … Reporting is also much better due to the customization capabilities so I can have multiple different views of the same report. Also, the recommended PO report is also a very nice tool that has helped our purchasers.”

“One instance this has helped my team is with back-orders where I was able to customize a report to show back-orders with available quantities that slipped through the cracks and could be fulfilled.”

Lessons Learned from the Transition

While the overall outcome was impressive for BW Industrial Sales, the more impactful step was the transition and the ultimate selection of DistributionOne Systems and Advantive. CJ felt that his team was accurately prepared for the shift from their old system to their new platform thanks to the hard work Advantive put in on their behalf.

“Yes, I would recommend working with Advantive/ D1 because of our good experience with the new system. I would highly recommend having someone on site for anyone wanting to transfer systems… The main thing that exceeded expectations is the transition. We had a very smooth transition and wouldn’t have been if it was not for the constant back and forth work every day. Once again, the member that was in house made the whole difference. He did more work in a week than we could have done in a month of zoom calls! The member that was here in house made the whole experience. Even though we had someone on zoom 24/7 for 3 weeks. The member in house did more work in 1 week fixing a ton of stuff right in the beginning of our launch. He was able to change our packing lists that were messed up in 3 minutes when it took me over as month to get something similar done through customer support.”

Choosing Advantive and Distribution One Set BW Industrial for Success

As BW Industrial Sales have shown, finding the right partner can make all the difference. By picking DistributionOne Systems and Advantive for their retail, training, and productivity needs, BW Industrial Sales was able to make numerous improvements to multiple areas of their business and add several features that improved quality of life for employees throughout the company. However, it was the relationship forged during the transition process that proved to be the true difference maker, cementing Advantive and BW Industrial Sales in a strong union for many successful years to come.