A number of growers have been preparing for some time for 100% Digital. WPK is working hard as well to meet the requirements of 100% Digital by the end of 2020. In this interview, WPK discusses the process, the challenges, benefits and their experience.
Can you give us a little more information about your company?
WPK is an authority in the area of vegetable cultivation in Europe. Their main activity is growing warm vegetable plants for the greenhouse horticulture industry. In addition, we cultivate tray plants for open field horticulture. In addition to the focus on vegetable cultivation, WPK has developed the House & Garden concept to market flowering pot plants in a distinctive way. We supply flowering pot plants to various customers in Europe.
With the House & Garden concept we are focussing on garden centres, DIY stores, retail and retailers. These products are produced at 3 different locations covering a total of 23 hectares and divided into direct sales, clock and clock presales. These different locations are perfectly equipped for both day trade and large mixed orders. Every year, we produce 4.5 million flowering pot plants for House & Garden, with the main crops being the seasonal plants Celosia and Platycodon.
Are you currently active in/with Floriday?
We are currently not yet active in Floriday, but we are busy working on the preparations for 100% Digital. At the end of the year we want to be ready to switch fully to Floriday. We are working at the nursery with Navision. At the moment the system is not yet parallel to Floriday, but it is being worked on. Everything must be ready this year, so that we can start using the platform and meet the requirements of 100% Digital.
Which functionalities in Floriday would you like to use this year? Or what kind of functionalities would you like to see in the future in Floriday?
If we can fully switch to Floriday, we will utilise all functionalities in Floriday and thus arrange everything for our daily trading activities. As soon as our software package is linked to the Floriday platform, we can get started. In the meantime, we've already attended a number of workshops, so we know the basics of the platform and hopefully we will find our way around it quickly.
What do you think are the advantages of 100% Digital? What benefits do you experience from 100% Digital?
The true advantages of 100% Digital, of course, will only be experienced once we start working this way. It will benefit us greatly that the offer will always be up to date and that we will gain more insight. It's a matter of properly setting up, making good preparations, paying close attention on a daily basis and, of course, obtaining the orders.
Why is 100% Digital important to you/your company?
As mentioned before - transparency. We can quickly process our offer and because the orders will soon all be received through Floriday, we will be able to keep a good overview. In addition, we know that we have to move forward and that this move towards digitisation is necessary. We have chosen to join in from the start, so that we can experience everything and also allow time for this change. We think it is important to be part of this change and to join in at an early stage.
Which things still need to change in order to comply with 100% Digital?
A colleague has focused on this project and has looked into it. He attended several workshops, had a lot of contact with other growers and wrote a manual for the other colleagues. As a result, everything from WPK is ready for 100% Digital. Only the link from our system to Floriday is not yet in place. As soon as this is done, we can get to work!
What are your expectations for the future?
Digitisation in our sector is important, we all have to keep up with this. I'm curious to see how other companies will tackle this process. If everything goes well and works properly, we are going to take a big step forward in terms of efficiency. The insight will save us a lot of time if everything goes well.
As far as ‘digitisation' is concerned, what would you like to tell your fellow growers?
Keep up with this development and make time for it. This is really very important! It's an ambitious goal and it takes some time and preparation, but try to keep up. It's a shame if you're left behind and can't keep up or run out of time. After all, we have to do it together!