Southern Pacific Sands is a sand mining company established approximately 13 years ago on a reserve of almost 2,500 acres of high quality large silica sands.
The reserve is located east of Caboolture, roughly 50 kilometres from the Brisbane central business district.
The company produces a range of quality processed sands suitable for the construction, foundry, filtration, golf course, glass, speciality sands, sporting oval and horticultural industries.
Moving with the times
Management at Southern Pacific Sands is highly focused. The company has one job: to get good quality sand out of the ground in a cost efficient manner and sell it for a reasonable margin. It's therefore understandable that the majority of attention goes towards the company's heavy machinery and onsite laboratory equipment essential for mining, processing and quality control.
Investment in IT has traditionally taken a back seat. All of this helps to explain why, in late 2010, Financial Controller and head of IT, Jason Miller, found himself faced with an ageing financial system that was on the verge of no longer being covered by support.
Miller explains: "Our old system was doing what we thought we needed at the time. It was stable, reliable and ran on a cheap server. That was our mindset with IT. The software gave us a way to get the data in, but we probably never utilised all the data we had available because of the hassle of getting it back out."
Recognising that an unsupported financial system was too great a business risk, Miller spoke to the company's IT provider, Professional Advantage, to arrange for a replacement. His main requirements included high levels of automation and integration with key software packages including I-Weigh, a weighbridge system which records sales data and is responsible for producing customer invoices.
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