Coop Eesti Keskühistu

Aivi Vaher
Chief accountant of COOP Estonia
www.etk.ee

COOP Estonia is the oldest and largest group of companies operating in retail area in Estonia. COOP Estonia includes 19 consumer cooperatives with about 83,000 customers-owners, i.e. members of the cooperative. The 350 stores of the cooperatives employ about 4500 people, and half a million regular customers visit the stores.

COOP Estonia uses HansaWorld software since 2006. During those years, several tailored solutions have been created for the company, which enable data exchange with other software programmes. The system is used on a daily basis by 10–20 employees. IT-employees of COOP Estonia regularly participate in HAL programming training.

Why did you choose HansaWorld software and why are you using it today?

The reasons for choosing the software and continuing to use it are rather similar. It has been available in the Estonian market for a long time, many top and middle managers have experience with it and people are used to it. Both in regard to using and implementing, HansaWorld is rather simple and understandable. We use different software programmes for specific functions and bring the financial information together in HansaWorld. The functionality we need it for is very good – simple and convenient both to use and to adapt to other software programmes.

How long did it take to implement it and what were the major challenges?

As we already had the necessary know-how (our IT manager has completed HansaWorld training), it was very quick. The IT unit needed about one month, the financial department about two months. From previous experience I know that it is extremely quick considering the volumes.

How did the extension of the programme go as the company grew?

As the operations grow and the same modules are used, it is not complicated at all. And even when a new area of business is added, it is simply necessary to see if it is possible to adapt the necessary part to HansaWorld, or another specific software programme should be added. And this is not just personal evaluation based on COOP Estonia; I can say the same also based on my previous work experience. The HansaWorld HAL programming language makes it possible to make all interfacing and adaptation operations quite easily – both in the local IT department or outsourcing the service from Excellent, which is also not too costly.

Would you recommend HansaWorld software to other companies? Why?

Yes, I would. It is advisable already because it is suitable for companies of any size. It is simple and transparent, reasonable business management software where one can look at various things side by side, get a detailed view of transactions from document to record and vice versa. It is really very convenient for a user.

What do you appreciate most in Excellent as a partner?

I can honestly say: there is nothing to criticize. We have always got consultations at a right time and to the necessary extent, and if we have needed major developments, it has been possible in the right direction and quickly enough. We like that we can talk to one specific person and do not have to start explaining over again who we are and what we want. It is like seeing a family practitioner – if he would start checking and investigating everything from the beginning every time, it would be unreasonably time-consuming for both. About Excellent it seems the focus is where they started about 20 years ago – a customer feels that they have a partner.

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