Making the recycling business profitable

Recycling is unquestionably a thing of the times, but it certainly isn’t a new invention. GP Metal A/S is proof of this. For 70 years and with four generations at the helm, the recycling company in Glostrup has purchased metal and other waste products, sorted it and resold it, for example to be melted in steel rolling mills. Recently, they chose to switch their ERP system from C5 to Uniconta – partly because the company’s operations require a number of customized solutions.

“We are not a typical industry, because our suppliers are also our customers. We negotiate metal waste truck prices with dirt under our nails, as well as follow the fluctuations of the metal exchange in London in white-collared shirts” explains Production Manager Tim Sørensen, whose great-grandfather founded the company.

“It’s the human side that determines whether we make money or not; how skilled we are at evaluating and sorting different grades of metal; how good we are at selling at the right time and how efficient we are at fully utilizing our transport capacity when we send a truck to a customer. Efficient systems are the key to allowing us time to think things through.”

Overview and integration

Tim believes that Uniconta helps maintain an overview and saves time on all the administrative tasks. “We greatly appreciate that it is user-friendly and easy to work with on a daily basis for all of our routine tasks. But first and foremost, it is the ability to easily integrate other solutions and to adapt the system to our special needs that determined our choice of Uniconta.”

For example, GP Metal’s IT supplier, DataComfort has developed a solution that sends clients’ weighed waste data directly into Uniconta. The van or truck drives directly onto the scale. The trucks identity is determined by the license plate, while the quality of the load is assessed manually. When the weight and assessment data is ready, it goes into Uniconta where everything is registered on the company’s account for the day’s price. Payments are then collected once a month via Uniconta.

“It’s simple and saves us precious time compared to our old system. Unfortunately, the process is a little more difficult for our private customers with whom we settle in cash. It would be great if we were able to use Mobilepay, for example, but there are challenges with the amount limits that still need to be solved,” says Tim Sørensen. However, Uniconta is able to handle overall price structures or individual agreements with the individual customer, if needed.

Declarations and legal requirements

“It is a legal requirement that we report the quantities and types of waste that pass through the company to the authorities. In this case our reseller, DataComfort has developed a system that can calculate the quantities we transfer based on the data we process in Uniconta. It has been of great advantage to us that Uniconta is a very open system which can be added to and developed within both the solution itself and via integration to other systems,” he says. In Uniconta, GP Metal operates well over 100 product categories, and each customer has different price structures within each product category.

Alternative inventory management

GP Metal also uses Uniconta’s inventory module, but perhaps in a rather different way that other clients. “We do not always buy clean products that we can register, but usually a mixed load of various types of metal and other waste. It is only once everything has been sorted that we are able to conclude what we have in stock. Therefore, I take a look around the warehouse once a month or as needed and register our stock in Uniconta then. This gives clarity on the stock we have to work with,” says Tim Sørensen and elaborates: “If the price of copper rises I may want to sell, but I also need to put a truck together with other delivery products, so that transportation remains economical. In Uniconta I can quickly get an overview of our stock. I can also see the average amounts that come in for example in each month. This means that I can take an order for a given quantity at a given price and then based, on the stock turnover, calculate when I can expect to deliver.”

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