Under the new partnership, Microsoft will provide both its back office CRM and ERP functions as the company progresses digitally.
Chief executive and managing director David Lenz said the move was undertaken as part of a strategy to update and consolidate to a single cloud-based platform and replace an excess of suppliers with strategic partners including network and communications from Telstra and computing hardware from Dell.
“Getting the right platform and the right partner was critical to ensure streamlined operations and continuous improvement in years to come,” Lenz said.
“Hills has grown through acquisition and has inherited a variety of ERP and CRM systems that are not able to deliver the long-term value that the organisation requires. By consolidating suppliers and streamlining information systems, we’ll achieve world class scalable, real-time Software as a Service technologies across all Hills ANZ locations.”
Lenz said Hills would work with a number of Microsoft Dynamics partners to roll out the CRM platform as the first phase of the project over the coming months, and would then look to consolidate its ERP platform, replacing four separate ERPs with Dynamics 365.
“Moving to a cloud-based solution will also ensure flexibility and scalability as Hills grows and expands, while at the same time reducing the risk posed by legacy infrastructure,” he said.
“The Microsoft Dynamics ERP & CRM SaaS model is scalable and, together with Microsoft 365, gives us a complete end-to-end business technology stack without having to invest heavily in capex infrastructure. Upon the completion of this project, it will deliver opex savings in excess of $1.8 million annually, and will ensure the company is better positioned to support growth while mitigating complexity and risk.
“Hills is an iconic Australian company that, 70 years on, is still evolving and adapting. We are focused on implementing strategies that will deliver improvements in our business and the best outcomes for our customers, shareholders, vendors and staff.”